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    Hiddink frees Arshavin from Turkish training camp

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    The trainer of the Russian national team, Guus Hiddink, has decided not to take Andrei Arshavin to a training camp in Turkey, the country's soccer authorities said on Thursday.

    MOSCOW, February 5 (RIA Novosti) - The trainer of the Russian national team, Guus Hiddink, has decided not to take Andrei Arshavin to a training camp in Turkey, the country's soccer authorities said on Thursday.

    The Russian Football Union announced on its website that the decision had been made not to call up Arshavin, 27, for the February 8-12 training camp due to his recent move to Arsenal.

    "The decision was taken in the interest of the national side and the player," Hiddink's assistant, Alexander Borodyuk, told Sport Express.

    "The decision is entirely unsurprising," the national side's press officer told Radio Zenit.

    "Andrei needs to adapt to England, to his new club, and to train and get used to his teammates," Ilya Kazakov said.

    Hiddink earlier decided not to call up Russia's only other foreign based players, Roman Pavlyuchenko at Tottenham Hotspur and Marat Izmailov at Sporting Lisbon, for the camp.

    The Russian domestic season starts in March. The national side's next matches are both World Cup 2010 qualifiers, the first on March 28 in Moscow against Azerbaijan, the second away to Lichtenstein on April 1.

    Arshavin signed for Arsenal from Zenit St. Petersburg for a reported fee of 16.9 million pounds ($24.5 million) on Tuesday, ending one of soccer's longest and most complicated transfer sagas.

    "I am happy to be here. I became a Gunner. I am happy now," he told Sky News after the deal had been confirmed.

    Although lacking match fitness, Arshavin, one of the stars of Euro 2008, could make his debut this weekend against Tottenham in Sunday's north London derby.

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