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    Russia have slight injury worries over the trio of Diniyar Bilyaletdinov, Ivan Saenko and Alexander Anyukov, but all should be fit to play.

    Bilyaletdinov and Anyukov were restricted to light running at training, while Saenko did not complete the full session.

    Defender Denis Kolodin and attacking midfielder Dmitry Torbinski are both missing through suspension.

    Spain's Cesc Fabregas is vying with Xavi for the role of playmaker.

    Arsenal star Fabregas impressed off the bench against Italy in their quarter-final and scored the decisive penalty in the shootout.

    Spain look to have a full squad to choose from and are favourites to progress, having beaten Russia 4-1 in their group meeting.

    But Russia have improved markedly since then, with Andrei Arshavin returning from suspension to pull the strings.

    But they will miss key defender Kolodin and attacking midfielder Torbinski, who scored their second goal against the Dutch.

    Vasily Berezutsky is favourite to start in central defence alongside CSKA Moscow team-mate Sergei Ignashevich.

    The other option is Roman Shirokov, who has not played since the first game against Spain.


    Spain and Russia (including Soviet Union) have met each other on nine previous occasions with Spain winning five times and Russia only once. The sole defeat for Spain came in a European Championship qualifier in 1971 with the Soviets winning 2-1.

    Head to head records and significant meetings
    Spain have won all three previous encounters at the European Championship, 2-1 in 1964, 1-0 in 2004 and 4-1 at Euro 2008.

    This is the ninth time that two countries have met in the group phase and the knock-out stages of a European Championship or World Cup.

    The only countries to win the knock-out encounter after first losing in the group phase are West Germany against Hungary at the 1954 World Cup and the Netherlands against the Soviet Union at Euro 1988.

    Nations meeting in group and KO phases of major finalsTeam facts - Russia Russia's Euro 2008 squad has won a total of 503 caps, fewer than any other country that was present at Euro 2008.

    The average age of the Russian squad is also the youngest in this tournament. Their average age is 26 years and 99 days on the day of the semi-final.

    However, head coach Guus Hiddink is vastly experienced in major tournaments. Euro 2008 is his fifth European Championship or World Cup. So far Hiddink has recorded 11 wins, equalling Dutch record holder Rinus Michels. Only Berti Vogts (12), Mario Zagallo (13), Luiz Felipe Scolari (16) and Helmut Schon (19) have won more matches in European Championships and World Cups combined.

    Russia and Turkey became only the fifth and sixth countries to qualify for the European Championship semi-finals despite losing their first match in the group.

    Team facts - Spain

    Qualified for a European Championship semi-final for the third time. Spain went on to reach the final on the two previous occasions, in 1964 and 1984.

    Unbeaten in 20 matches (17 wins and three draws) since losing to Romania (0-1) in November 2006. The Spanish record is 31 and was set between September 1994 and November 1997.

    The second longest unbeaten streak was also set during the reign of coach Luis Aragones. Between August 2004 and June 2006, Spain remained unbeaten in 25 matches in a row.

    Aragones is the oldest coach to lead a team to the semi-finals in a European Championship. He is 69 years and 334 days old on Thursday. The previous record holder was Otto Rehhagel, who was 65 years and 327 days old when Greece played in the last four of Euro 2004.

    Player facts - Russia

    By scoring three goals, Roman Pavlyuchenko has become Russia's joint top scorer in European Championships. He equalled Valentin Ivanov (1960-1964) and Viktor Ponedelnik (1960-1964).

    Igor Akinfeev, Vyacheslav Malafeev, Aleksandr Anyukov, Vladimir Bystrov, Igor Semshov and Dmitri Sychev sat on the bench when Spain and Russia met at Euro 2004. Sychev made a substitute appearance.

    Dmitriy Torbinskiy and Denis Kolodin are suspended for this match.

    Player facts - Spain Santi Cazorla has come on as a substitute for Andres Iniesta in every match at Euro 2008.

    For some Spanish and Russian players this will be the fourth time they meet this season, including Euro 2008. When Villarreal CF were knocked out by Zenit St. Petersburg in the third round of the Uefa Cup, Joan Capdevila, Marcos Senna and Santi Cazorla faced Vyacheslav Malafeev, Aleksandr Anyukov, Roman Shirokov, Konstantin Zyryanov and Andrei Arshavin.

    Miscellaneous Info

    Belgian referee Frank De Bleeckere also controlled Russia's group match against Sweden (2-0) at Euro 2008.

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