Fulham striker Pavel Pogrebnyak has been named in Russia’s preliminary 26-man squad for the European Championships.
Russian coach Dick Advocaat included the 28 year-old forward who has scored six goals in eleven games since joining the Whites on a short-term deal from VfB Stuttgart at the end of January. Fulham are hoping that a deal to keep Pogrebnyak, who recently tipped his club manager Martin Jol as a potential successor for the unpredictable Advocaat, at Craven Cottage can be concluded by tomorrow. He will be keen to do make up for lost time in Poland and Ukraine, having missed the Euro 2008 finals – where Russia reached the last four – through injury.
Advocaat has sprung some surprises in this announcement – dropping former Everton midfielder Diniyar Bilyaletdinov and Zenit St Petersburg winger Vladimir Bystrov, who excelled under Guus Hiddink at Euro 2008. Advoocat, who will leave the national team post to take over at PSV Eindhoven after the tournament, included uncapped pair Magomed Ozdoyev and Vladimir Granat in his squad, which must be trimmed to 23 players by the end of May. The Russians start their championships against the Czech Republic in Warsaw on June 8, before playing Poland and Greece in Warsaw.
Advocaat’s squad will come together for a pre-Euro 2012 training camp next Sunderland and play three friendlies against Uruguay in Moscow on 25 May in Moscow, Lithuania in Nyon four days later and Italy in Zurich on June 1st.
RUSSIAN PRELIMINARY SQUAD FOR EURO 2012
Goalkeepers: Igor Akinfeev (PFC CSKA Moskva), Vyacheslav Malafeev (FC Zenit St Petersburg), Anton Shunin (FC Dinamo Moskva).
Defenders: Aleksandr Anyukov (FC Zenit St Petersburg), Aleksei Berezutski (PFC CSKA Moskva), Vasili Berezutski (PFC CSKA Moskva), Sergei Ignashevich (PFC CSKA Moskva), Vladimir Granat (FC Dinamo Moskva), Yuri Zhirkov (FC Anzhi Makhachkala), Dmitri Kombarov (FC Spartak Moskva), Roman Sharonov (FC Rubin Kazan), Roman Shishkin (FC Lokomotiv Moskva).
Midfielders: Igor Denisov (FC Zenit St Petersburg), Konstantin Zyryanov (FC Zenit St Petersburg), Roman Shirokov (FC Zenit St Petersburg), Denis Glushakov (FC Lokomotiv Moskva), Magomed Ozdoev (FC Lokomotiv Moskva), Igor Semshov (FC Dinamo Moskva), Marat Izmailov (Sporting Clube de Portugal), Alan Dzagoev (PFC CSKA Moskva).
Forwards: Andrey Arshavin (FC Zenit St Petersburg), Aleksandr Kerzhakov (FC Zenit St Petersburg), Artem Dzyuba (FC Spartak Moskva), Aleksandr Kokorin (FC Dinamo Moskva), Roman Pavlyuchenko (FC Lokomotiv Moskva), Pavel Pogrebnyak (Fulham FC).