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GENEVA, June 7. /TASS/. Zenit St. Petersburg FC midfielder Artur Yusupov has been officially approved to replace his teammate Igor Denisov in the Russian national football squad for matches of the 2016 Euro Cup, UEFA’s press service announced on Tuesday.
Yusupov arrived in France on Monday as a matter of urgency from his vacation in Monaco. He joined the Russian national football team as a possible replacement for midfielder Denisov, who sustained an injury on Sunday night in a friendly match against Serbia in Monaco.
The Russian Football Union (RFU) announced on Monday that Denisov was diagnosed with a hamstring injury and his recovery would require at least two weeks.
In line with the UEFA regulations, a national team is allowed to replace an injured player before the start of the championship in case "a doctor from the UEFA Medical Committee and the team doctor concerned both confirm the injury or illness is sufficiently serious to prevent the player taking part."
Dinamo Moscow FC player Denisov, 32, received an injury in the 51st minute of the match against Serbia, which was played as part of preparations for the 2016 UEFA Euro Cup at Monaco’s Louis II stadium on June 5. The match ended with 1-1 draw.
Russia emerged the winner only once in four friendly matches it played ahead of the major European football tournament, beating Lithuania by three goals to nothing. There was one draw against Serbia on Sunday and two defeats to France (2:4) and the Czech Republic (1:2).
The 2016 UEFA Euro Cup will be held in France between June 10 and July 10 with matches to be played in 10 different locations, namely in Bordeaux, Lens, Lille, Lyon, Marseille, Nice, Paris, Saint-Denis, Saint-Etienne and Toulouse.
A total of 24 European national teams qualified for the Euro Cup final tournament in 2016, after the contestants’ format, which was used since 1996, was decided to be extended from 16 to 24 teams.
The contesting teams were divided into six groups and Russia was placed into Group B, sharing it with the teams from England, Wales and Slovakia. The Russian football team will play three matches in the Euro-2016 group stage: against the team of England in Marseille June 11; Slovakia in Lille on June 15; and Wales in Toulouse on June 20.