MOSCOW, May 24 (RIA Novosti)
Russia’s squad for Euro 2012 has suffered its second withdrawal in less than a week after Lokomotiv Moscow right-back Roman Shishkin was ruled out of the tournament with illness Thursday.
Experienced defender Vasily Berezutsky pulled out of the squad with a hip injury Sunday, meaning that coach Dick Advocaat’s 26-man preliminary squad has now been reduced to 24, with a 23-man squad required for Euro 2012.
“Unfortunately, the national team has lost a second player and defender due to a health problem,” team spokesman Ilya Kazakov said.
“Roman has an acute problem of the gastrointestinal tract.”
The original problem has now been healed, but he has lost weight and is suspected to have an inflamed digestive tract, Kazakov added.
Shishkin missed the last two days' training, with Advocaat saying he was suffering from food poisoning, but the Dutch coach admitted the defender had actually been hospitalised.
Advocaat said that he would not call up another player to replace Shishkin, arguing that Russia had enough defensive cover in the preliminary squad.
“We have enough defensive players. That’s why an extra defender was called up," he said.
Shishkin was widely expected to cover for first-choice right-back Alexander Anyukov and his departure leaves Russia with only one other player specialising in the position, Rubin Kazan's 35-year-old Roman Sharonov, who last played for the national team in 2004.
Shishkin, 25, has eight caps for Russia and was first called up in 2007 by Advocaat’s predecessor Guus Hiddink for a Euro 2008 qualifying match against Estonia, although he did not play again for another three years.
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