FIFA World Cup 2018: Fyodor Smolov, Artem Dzyuba to spearhead Russia’s attack
Russia have one more warm-up game ahead of the FIFA World Cup 2018, against Turkey in Moscow at the CSKA Arena in Moscow on Tuesday.Updated: Jun 03, 2018 22:25 IST
Injury-hit Russia named their World Cup 23 today with their hopes of performing respectably as hosts riding on attacking duo Fyodor Smolov and Artem Dzyuba.
Coach Stanislav Cherchesov has lost Spartak full-back Georgi Dzhikiya, CSKA defender Viktor Vasin and Zenit St Petersburg striker Alexander Kokorin to knee ligament injuries, while Spartak Moscow goalkeeper Alexander Selikhov has ruptured his Achilles tendon.
Krasnodar forward Smolov, the Russian league’s top scorer in 2016-17, who finished second in the league scorers’ chart this year, will spearhead Russia’s attack alongside with Dzyuba, who was loaned from Zenit St Petersburg to Arsenal Tula at the start of January.
One player who seems to have recovered from injuries at the right time is midfielder Denis Cheryshev, who plays for Villarreal in the Spanish Liga. He came as a substitute as Russia lost, 1-0, to Austria in a friendly last Wednesday, and has been included in the 23.
Cherchesov cut Rubin Kazan goalkeeper Soslan Dzhanaev, former German youth internationals Roman Neustadter and Konstantin Rausch, Dynamo Moscow midfielder Alexander Tashaev and CSKA Moscow striker Fyodor Chalov.
Russia have one more warm-up game, against Turkey in Moscow at the CSKA Arena in Moscow on Tuesday.
They kick off the World Cup against Saudi Arabia in Group A at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow on June 14 and also face Egypt in St Petersburg on June 19 and Uruguay in Volgograd on June 25.
Goalkeepers: Igor Akinfeev (CSKA Moscow), Vladimir Gabulov (Brugge/BEL), Andrey Lunev (Zenit St Petersburg) Defenders: Vladimir Granat, Fyodor Kudryashov (all Rubin Kazan), Ilya Kutepov (Spartak Moscow), Andrey Semyonov (Akhmat Grozny), Igor Smolnikov (Zenit St Petersburg), Mario Fernandes, Sergei Ignashevich (both CSKA Moscow) Midfielders: Yury Gazinsky (Krasnodar), Alan Dzagoev, Alexander Golovin (both CSKA Moscow), Alexander Erokhin, Yury Zhirkov, Daler Kuzyaev (all Zenit St Petersburg), Roman Zobnin, Alexander Samedov (both Spartak Moscow), Anton Miranchuk (Lokomotiv Moscow), Denis Cheryshev (Villarreal/ESP) Forwards: Artem Dzyuba (Arsenal Tula), Alexei Miranchuk (Lokomotiv Moscow), Fyodor Smolov (Krasnodar).
Tunisia announces squad
Tunisia coach Nabil Maaloul stripped six players from his provisional group to reveal a whittled down 23-man World Cup squad on Saturday.
The Carthage Eagles are back in the finals after a 12-year break and after drawing 2-2 with Turkey this week Maaloul said they had “what it takes to get past the first round.”
Tunisia play England June 18, Belgium June 23 and Panama June 28.
Goalkeepers (3): Aymen Mathlouthi (Al Batin Saoudi/KSA), Farouk Ben Mustapha (Al Shabab Saoudi/KSA), Mouez Hassen (Chateauroux/FRA)
Defenders (8): Hamdi Nagguez (Zamalek/EGY), Dylan Bronn (Ghent/BEL), Rami Bedoui (Etoile Sportive du Sahel), Yohan Benalouane (Leicester/ENG), Syam Ben Youssef (Kasimpasa/TUR), Yassine Meriah (Club Sportif Sfax), Oussama Haddadi (Dijon/FRA), Ali Maaloul (Al Ahli/EGY)
Midfielders (6): Ellyes Skhiri (Montpellier/FRA), Mohamed Amine Ben Amor (Al Ahly/KSA), Ghaylene Chalali (Esperance Tunis), Ferjani Sassi (Al Nasr Saoudi/KSA), Ahmed Khalil (Club Africain), Saifeddine El Khaoui (Troyes/FRA)
Forwards (6): Fakhreddine Ben Youssef (Al Ittifak/KSA), Anice Badri (Esperance), Bassem Srarfi (Nice/FRA), Wahbi Khazri (Rennes/FRA), Naim Sliti (Dijon/FRA), Saber Khalifa (Club Africain)