- Associated Press - Saturday, May 21, 2016

MOSCOW (AP) - Schalke defender Roman Neustadter, who formerly played for Germany, has been included in Russia’s squad for the European Championship.

Neustadter, who was born in the Soviet Union in what is now Ukraine and moved to Germany as a young child, qualifies for a first Russia call-up because his two caps for Germany were in friendlies.

It was not immediately clear whether Neustadter had a Russian passport yet. “This issue is being solved as we speak,” Russian Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko, who is also head of the Russian Football Union, told the R-Sport news agency.

Besides Neustadter, Brazilian-born goalkeeper Guilherme could make his competitive debut for Russia after receiving a passport this year. Guilherme has been with Lokomotiv Moscow since 2007, and first played for Russia in a friendly against Lithuania in March, becoming the first naturalized foreigner to do so.

There were few other surprises in the 23-man squad revealed on Saturday, although two important players from qualifying, left wing-back Yuri Zhirkov and right back Oleg Kuzmin, missed out through injury.

Regular captain Roman Shirokov is included despite recent speculation in the Russian media that he would not make the cut after dropping out of league champion CSKA Moscow’s first team. CSKA’s coach Leonid Slutsky is also coach of Russia.

Russia, which will host the 2018 World Cup, is in Group B for the European Championship with England, Wales and Slovakia.

The tournament in France starts on June 10.

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Russia:

Goalkeepers: Igor Akinfeev (CSKA Moscow), Guilherme (Lokomotiv Moscow), Yuri Lodygin (Zenit St. Petersburg).

Defenders: Alexei Berezutsky (CSKA Moscow), Vasily Berezutsky (CSKA Moscow), Sergei Ignashevich (CSKA Moscow), Dmitry Kombarov (Spartak Moscow), Roman Neustadter (Schalke), Georgy Shchennikov (CSKA Moscow), Roman Shishkin (Lokomotiv Moscow), Igor Smolnikov (Zenit St. Petersburg).

Midfielders: Igor Denisov (Dynamo Moscow), Alan Dzagoev (CSKA Moscow), Denis Glushakov (Spartak Moscow), Alexander Golovin (CSKA Moscow), Oleg Ivanov (Terek Grozny), Pavel Mamaev (FC Krasnodar), Alexander Samedov (Lokomotiv Moscow), Oleg Shatov (Zenit St. Petersburg), Roman Shirokov (CSKA Moscow).

Forwards: Artyom Dzyuba (Zenit St. Petersburg), Alexander Kokorin (Zenit St. Petersburg), Fyodor Smolov (FC Krasnodar).

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