Russian Premier League – Matchday 5 Review

Matchday 5 got underway on Saturday in understated fashion with a 0-0 draw between Ural and Amkar in Yekaterinburg. Bulgarians Georgi Peev and Blagoy Georgiev both returned to the starting lineup after being demoted for a short period after a bust up with Amkar manager Stanislav Cherchesov.

Zenit then took on Anzhi in the weekend’s most anticipated game. The Anzhi line up was very much depleted relative to recent games over the past couple of seasons. Chris Samba, Willian, Lacina Traore and Lass Diarra were all missing from the squad but Samuel Eto’o did start. Goalkeeper Vladimir Gabulov was dropped to the bench in favour of Mikhail Kerzhakov. It’s expected that further departures are expected before the window closes. The match was a one that the home side dominated, Roman Shirokov opened the scoring before Hulk doubled Zenit’s lead just before half time. The home side wrapped the game up 15 minutes before the final whistle with full back Cristian Ansaldi scoring on his debut. Anzhi with only 2 points so far this season and they find themselves second bottom at this early stage.

In Saturday’s final game, Terek continued their poor start to the season against Lokomotiv. Both teams were seemingly heading towards a drab 0-0 draw which would have probably been a fair result, however the away side scored the winner in injury time through Alexander Samedov who fired a shot into the roof of the net.

On Sunday, CSKA were made to work hard to earn a 1-0 victory against Kuban in Moscow. Ahmed Musa with neat work in the area before shooting past Belenov for the only goal of the game. It was Kuban’s first league defeat of 2013, a run which involved three different managers. Both sides had plenty of chances throughout the game Dzagoev and Musa both missing for the home side whereas Kabore, Bucur and Cisse all had chances for Kuban but all failed to convert.

Spartak and Rubin played out another 0-0 draw in typical Rubin fashion which typifies their performances of recent years. Spartak hit the woodwork twice in the match and may feel unlucky not to have taken all three points in the match. The game was played at Lokomotiv’s ground due to the athletics taking place at the Luzhniki. It was Rubin’s third consecutive 0-0 draw in the RPL.

Tomsk remain the only team without a point in the RPL and nothing in their 1-0 defeat away to Krylya showed that that may change. Krylya were even reduced to 10 men after Ilya Maksimov’s challenge Mikhail Komkov saw him see red 10 minutes into the second half. Despite this, the home side took the lead five minutes later through Ibragim Tsalagov with a neat strike from the edge of the area. Tomsk still failed to take control during the remainder of the match which ended in their fifth straight defeat.

Dinamo played out a 1-1 draw Krasnodar, the home side were ahead within 10 minutes through last year’s top scorer Wanderson. Only Igor Denisov made the match squad of the recent trio of signings with Yury Zhirkov and Alexander Kokorin both left out. It was then ironic that Dinamo then had to rely upon 18 year old Andrei Panyukov to rescue a point for the away side with only 7 minutes of normal time remaining. It was Panyukov’s first career league goal for Dinamo and a point that could be vital in keeping up momentum.

Finally on Monday, Rostov showed why it is they who find themselves top of the league after 5 games with a 4-0 victory over Volga. Jano Ananidze ran the midfield, he scored the opening goal just after the restart before going on to set up Timofey Kalachev and Artem Dzyuba for Rostov’s third and fourth goals respectively. Byung-Soo Yoo scored his first goal for the club to thoroughly cement Rostov’s place at the top. The away side’s misery was also compounded by the fact that Denis Kolodin received a second yellow card for handball on 81 minutes.

Full Results:

Ural 0-0 Amkar
Zenit 3-0 Anzhi
Terek 0-1 Lokomotiv
CSKA 1-0 Kuban
Spartak 0-0 Rubin
Krylya 1-0 Tomsk
Krasnodar 1-1 Dinamo
Rostov 4-0 Volga

Twitter – @FootRussiaLive

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