MOSCOW (AP) – Fulham striker Pavel Pogrebnyak is looking to make up for missed chances at the European Championship after Russia coach Dick Advocaat included him in a preliminary squad.
The powerful forward exploded on the English Premier League in January after arriving from Stuttgart. He scored five goals in his first three matches, including a hat trick against Wolverhampton Wanderers.
After missing Euro 2008 due to injury, the former Zenit St. Petersburg star is eager to make amends in Poland and Ukraine and add to his tally of eight goals in 31 internationals.
Advocaat, who will return to PSV Eindhoven after coaching Russia at the championship, surprisingly dropped former Everton midfielder Diniyar Bilyaletdinov, who now plays for Spartak Moscow.
Instead, the Dutchman called up several newcomers: Spartak Moscow defender Vladimir Granat and Lokomotiv Moscow midfielder Magomed Ozdoyev. He also invited veteran Sporting Lisbon midfielder Marat Izmailov, who has 31 caps but last played for Russia in 2006.
The team will start preparations for Euro 2012 on May 20 and is scheduled to play three warm-up matches. Russia will host Uruguay in Moscow on May 25 and will face Latvia and Italy in Switzerland on May 29 and June 1 respectively.
The final 23-man squad must be submitted to UEFA before May 29.
Russia will face Greece, Czech Republic and Poland in Group A, starting from June 8.
Goalkeepers: Igor Akinfeev (CSKA Moscow), Vyacheslav Malafeev (Zenit St. Petersburg), Anton Shunin (Dinamo Moscow).
Defenders: Alexander Anyukov (Zenit St. Petersburg), Alexei Berezutski (CSKA Moscow), Vasiliy Berezutski (CSKA Moscow), Sergei Ignashevich (CSKA Moscow), Vladimir Granat (Dinamo Moscow), Yuri Zhirkov (Anzhi), Roman Sharonov (Rubin Kazan), Roman Shishkin (Lokomotiv Moscow).
Midfielders: Igor Denisov (Zenit St. Petersburg), Roman Shirokov (Zenit St. Petersburg), Konstantin Zyryanov (Zenit St. Petersburg), Denis Glushakov (Lokomotiv Moscow), Magomed Ozdoyev (Lokomotiv Moscow), Igor Semshov (Dinamo Moscow).
Forwards: Andrei Arshavin (Arsenal), Alexander Kerzhakov (Zenit St.Petersburg), Roman Pavlyuchenko (Tottenham), Pavel Pogrebnyak (Stuttgart), Alan Dzagoyev (CSKA Moscow), Artyom Dzyuba, (Spartak Moscow), Marat Izmailov, (Sporting), Alexander Kokorin (Dinamo Moscow).