Russia Training Session - 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia
MOSCOW, RUSSIA - JUNE 13: Stanislav Cherchesov, Head Coach of Russia talks to the media during a Russia press conference ahead of the 2018 FIFA World Cup opening match against Saudia Arabia at Luzhniki Stadium on June 13, 2018 in Moscow, Russia. (Photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images)

Stanislav Cherchesov has teased that Sergei Nikolayevich’s shock comeback for Russia for the World Cup was actually all part of his grand plan

The CSKA Moscow defender, who will turn 39 in July, unexpectedly came out of international retirement to replace the injured Rubin Kazan defender Ruslan Kambolov.

Since he made his international debut in 2002, Ignashevich made a record 122 appearances for Russia before retiring in 2016.

While the veteran defender had expected to be a mere spectator for the World Cup, he was then asked by Russia head coach Cherchesov to come out of retirement in their time of need.

“As far as Ignashevich is concerned, I have the feeling that he never left us,” said Cherchesov, as stated on The Guardian.

“We kept track of him from day one, we reached an agreement with him and we kept our end of the bargain. He’s a cementing factor inside and outside of the pitch.”

Russia will begin the World Cup today at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow against Saudi Arabia in Group A.