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Soccer-Kerzhakov starts for Russia against Algeria

Reuters

CURITIBA, Brazil, June 26 (Reuters) - Veteran striker Alexander Kerzhakov will start for Russia on Thursday in a World Cup Group H match against Algeria that Fabio Capello's side must win to progress to the knockout stages.

Russia's 31-year-old all-time top scorer, who bagged a vital equaliser against South Korea but featured only in stoppage time in the 1-0 defeat to group leaders Belgium, replaces Maxim Kanunnikov.

Capello made no other changes to the lineup who lost against Belgium, with midfielder Alan Dzagoev again on the bench. Kerzhakov is the only member of the Russian squad to have appeared at a previous World Cup.

Algeria, who are likely to need only a draw to reach the last 16 for the first time, made one change to the team that overwhelmed South Korea 4-2 with defender Madjid Bougherra replaced by Essaid Belkalem. (Reporting by Alan Baldwin, editing by Justin Palmer)

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