Russia have every chance of escaping Group H in Brazil this month - but will Fabio Capello's side flatter to deceive? 

Goalkeepers: Igor Akinfeev (CSKA Moscow), Yury Lodygin (Zenit St Petersburg), Sergey Ryzhikov (Rubin Kazan).

Defenders: Vasili Berezutskiy, Sergey Ignashevich, Georgi Schennikov (all CSKA Moscow), Vladimir Granat, Alexey Kozlov (both Dynamo Moscow), Andrey Eshchenko (Anzhi Makhachkala), Dmitry Kombarov (Spartak Moscow), Andrey Semenov (Terek Grozny),

Midfielders: Denis Glushakov (Spartak Moscow), Igor Denisov, Yury Zhirkov, Alexey Ionov (all Dynamo Moscow), Alan Dzagoev (CSKA Moscow), Alexander Samedov (Lokomotiv Moscow), Victor Faizulin, Oleg Shatov (both Zenit St Petersburg), Roman Shirokov (Krasnodar).

Forwards: Maxim Kanunnikov (Amkar Perm), Alexander Kerzhakov (Zenit St Petersburg), Alexander Kokorin (Dynamo Moscow).

Fixtures

17th June v South Korea (Cuiaba)

22nd June v Belgium (Rio de Janeiro)

26th June v Algeria (Curitiba)

Strengths

Since Fabio Capello took the reigns, Russia’s new high-pressing play has seen them only lose twice since July 2012. CSKA Moscow pair Sergei Ignashevich and Vasili Berezutski form a solid centre-back pairing which gets good support from midfield. Alan Dzagoev will look to be the spark of creativity from midfield and Alexander Kokorin is always a threat in front of goal.

Weaknesses

Russia have a poor record in recent tournaments and an aging squad may struggle against a youthful team in the hot conditions.

Key Player

Alan Dzagoev. The 23-year-old performed well at the 2012 European Championships and could be Russia's star man in Brazil.

Prediction

They could sneak into the last 16 but a potential tie with Germany could put an end to their World Cup hopes.

Odds

80/1


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Topics:
#World Cup
#Football
#Internationals