The USSR (who became the Commonwealth of Independent States during the campaign) reached the 1993 UEFA European Women's Championship quarter-finals at their only attempt and Russia were to match that two years later, with both teams losing to Germany over two legs. In 1997, they qualified directly for the final tournament but once there were defeated by Sweden, France – who they had beaten in the preliminaries – and Spain. However, they were among six European sides to qualify for the 1999 FIFA Women's World Cup, thanks to two 2–1 play-off wins against Finland, and comfortable victories over Japan and Canada earned them a quarter-final, where they lost to eventual runners-up China.
They cruised unbeaten into the 2001 continental finals but managed only a point against England in the group stage. Russia's fine qualifying run then continued in the 2003 World Cup and they again reached the quarter-finals before a 7–1 loss to Germany. That preceded something of a decline in fortunes as Finland avenged their 1999 reverse by beating Russia in the play-offs for UEFA WOMEN'S EURO 2005, before Russia had the misfortune to draw Germany in 2007 World Cup qualifying.
Renewed hope soon began to come from the younger generation, however, with a young member of the 2003 squad, Elena Danilova, inspiring victory in the 2005 UEFA European Women's Under-19 Championship, their first post-Soviet national team title at any level. Although the striker has suffered injury problems, many of her colleagues have graduated to the senior squad, with Russia eventually reaching the 2009 finals with a dramatic away-goals play-off success against Scotland. At the final tournament, Russia were drawn against Sweden, Italy and England in Group C. The team was unable to get past the group stage and finished last as they lost all the three matches, scoring 2 and conceding 8.