Tarasova used her power and she made Kovtun represent Russia in European, rather than Menshov or Arthur G. Kovkun was in 17 place and for that reason Russia has only one place to Sochi. Skating young Kovtun is still inconsistent. Plushenko failed in the free program (R.N) and why Kovtun won for a few points of difference , otherwise Plushenko had won nationals. Plushenko is still the best skater in Russia. Plushenko should go to Sochi. Simple: he is the best choice for Russia yet. Plushenko 70% of his level is better than 100% Kovtun. Plushenko should retire in Sochi; he deserves it.
The only culprit is the Russian Federation, and now they have to solve problems caused by poor organization of the past.