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Russia boss Hiddink concerned about Tottenham's Pavlyuchenko

Russian national team boss Guus Hiddink admits he is concerned about the lack of game time striker Roman Pavlyuchenko has received at Tottenham recently.

The 27-year old is down the pecking order under Harry Redknapp at White Hart Lane and the fact he is not playing regular Premier League football may affect him as his country heads towards the World Cup.

Russia will need to qualify for South Africa 2010 via a two-legged play-off and Hiddink is worried that Pavlyuchenko may not be picked for those games or at all if he doesn't push himself into Redknapp's calculations.

"Yes, there is that danger," Hiddink said on dailymail.co.uk. "It will depend on other strikers. I'm not going to take six forwards for one position.

"A similar situation could arise in 2010 and Roman should remember this. But we know how Pavlyuchenko can improve in the run-up to the World Cup.

"When we began preparing for Euro 2008, he was not in good form. But with three to four weeks of heavy training he lost four kilos and put himself in a position that allowed him to perform well at the European Championship."

Andrew Slevison
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Andrew Slevison

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