This was an enthralling game that promised goals from the off, before literally slapping viewers around the face with them via Welliton’s six-minute hat-trick!
Overall, Spartak deserved the three points, though it’s a shame the away side’s club-captaining goalkeeper Sergei Pareiko was at fault for 75 percent of their strikes.
His side were 4-1 down until Sergei Pasyakov’s harsh injury-time red card allowed another Sergei, Kornilenko, to reduce the deficit from the spot: a task rendered unproblematic as Martin Stranzl was forced to don the gloves.
Referee Eduard Maliy perhaps felt he needed to make amends by awarding the Siberians a penalty – at 0-0, he awarded then subtracted a dot-shot to the visitors, bemusing all by replacing it with a drop-ball!
Spartak started in a manner suggesting they were still buoyed by last week’s 3-2 *away* win over Loko at the Luznikhi stadium – the same venue used to contest this game.
They made one change from that successful XI, incorporating newbie Dmitri Kombarov after his signing from Dynamo. Aidan McGeady, on the other hand, wasn’t even deemed fit enough for the bench. Continue reading