Graeme Jackson

Friday Mar 09, 2018. 12:30

As the build-up to the 2018 FIFA World Cup reaches intensity, Russia national team coach Stanislav Cherchesov says he is watching Egyptian players.

Cherchesov spoke about his team’s Group A opponents the Pharaohs, Saudi Arabia and Uruguay as the hosts prepare for the World Cup.

The Russian national team are set to face Hector Cuper’s Egypt in their second group stage match on June 19 at the Krestovsky Stadium in Saint Petersburg.

“I recently travelled to England to watch some of Egypt’s leading players in action,” Cherchesov told

“Mohamed Salah at Liverpool, Mohamed Elneny at Arsenal, and the pair at West Bromwich [Albion].

“I’m sure that they too will have changed a lot compared to last year.

“We’re learning about Saudi Arabia gradually. This team has a new coach, which means over analysing their matches from last year would be pointless because there may have been a lot of changes.

“We’re observing how they’re playing in warm-up matches.”

The manager will have a tough task on his hand after two of his starting three centre-backs have picked up injuries, which makes their World Cup appearances unlikely.

“Unfortunately, two of our starting central defenders, Viktor Vasin and Georgi Dzhikiya, have been ruled out for long spells through injury. At the same time, we’re gathering information on our opponents,” he concluded.

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