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Capello Drops Zhirkov for First Friendly

© RIA Novosti . Alexey Kudenko / Go to the photo bankYuri Zhirkov
Yuri Zhirkov - Sputnik International
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New Russia coach Fabio Capello has dropped ex-Chelsea wing-back Yuri Zhirkov for his first friendly in charge, in an otherwise conservative 24-man squad released Monday by the Russian Football Union.

New Russia coach Fabio Capello has dropped ex-Chelsea wing-back Yuri Zhirkov for his first friendly in charge, in an otherwise conservative 24-man squad released Monday by the Russian Football Union.

The squad will face the Ivory Coast in Moscow on August 15.

Of the 24 players, 15 were in the Russia squad that crashed out in the group stage of Euro 2012, while two more, defenders Vasily Berezutsky and Roman Shishkin, were originally picked for the tournament before being ruled out with medical problems.

As well as Anzhi’s Zhirkov, another notable absentee is Sporting Lisbon’s Marat Izmailov, while Reading forward Pavel Pogrebnyak was already out of contention, having been left off an earlier 36-man provisional list.

There is also no place for Spartak Moscow striker Artem Dzyuba, who narrowly missed out on a place at Euro 2012 but is tipped as one of Russia’s brightest prospects.

Ex-Everton midfielder Diniyar Bilyaletdinov returns after failing to make the squad for Euro 2012.

The squad hints at selection problems in midfield, with Capello selecting 11 midfielders including Arsenal’s Andrei Arshavin and CSKA Moscow’s Alan Dzagoev, one of the stars of Euro 2012.

Four players - defenders Georgy Shchennikov and Andrei Yeshchenko, as well as midfielder Viktor Faizulin and Magomed Ozdoev - could win their first caps.

Squad:

Goalkeepers: Igor Akinfeev (CSKA Moscow), Vyacheslav Malafeev (Zenit St. Petersburg), Anton Shunin (Dynamo Moscow).

Defenders: Alexander Anyukov (Zenit St. Petersburg), Alexei Berezutsky (CSKA Moscow), Vasily Berezutsky (CSKA Moscow), Sergei Ignashevich (CSKA Moscow), Georgy Shchennikov (CSKA Moscow), Taras Burlak (Lokomotiv Moscow), Andrei Yeshchenko (Lokomotiv Moscow).

Midfielders: Dmitry Kombarov (Spartak Moscow), Diniyar Bilyaletdinov (Spartak Moscow), Vladimir Bystrov (Zenit St. Petersburg), Igor Denisov (Zenit St. Petersburg), Alan Dzagoev (CSKA Moscow), Viktor Faizulin (Zenit St. Petersburg), Denis Glushakov (Lokomotiv Moscow), Magomed Ozdoev (Lokomotiv Moscow), Alexander Samedov (Lokomotiv Moscow), Roman Shirokov (Zenit St. Petersburg), Andrei Arshavin (Arsenal).

Forwards: Alexander Kerzhakov (Zenit St. Petersburg), Alexander Kokorin (Dynamo Moscow), Roman Pavlyuchenko (Lokomotiv Moscow).

 

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