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Advocaat asks home boys to prepare Russia for Irish group

NEW RUSSIA manager Dick Advocaat is keeping things local as he is relying heavily on Russian league players for his first game in charge next week, writes AIDAN FITZMAURICE.

Russia, who are among Ireland's opponents in the Euro 2012 qualifiers, play Bulgaria in Moscow next Wednesday, Advocaat's first game in charge since he took over from Guus Hiddink.

He has named just five foreign-based players in his panel for the game. Four come from the English Premier League: Andrei Arshavin (Arsenal), Roman Pavlychenko (Spurs), Yuri Zhirkov (Chelsea) and Dinidar Bilyaletdinov (Everton), along with Stuttgart forward Pavel Pogrebnyak.

The rest of the squad are drawn from home-based clubs like CSKA Moscow (5), Dinamo Moscow (3), Lokomotiv Moscow (2) and domestic league leaders Zenit St Petersburg (5).

Russia play Ireland in Dublin in October. Also next week, Armenia -- Ireland's first opponents in the qualifiers -- play at home to Iran in a friendly.


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