Anzhi Makhachkala-Volga Nizhny Novgorod preview

Big-spending Anzhi take on relegation-battling Volga in the 23rd round of the Russian Premier League season later on this evening (8.30pm local time). The clash will see Anzhi’s marquee buy Samuel Eto’o handed his home début at the 20,000-seater Dinamo Stadium, with the Cameroonian striker likely to make a first start for his new employers (despite travelling to Africa during the past fortnight for a Cup of Nations qualifier). During that time, those of his teammates not on international duty met Kazakhstani outfit Aktobe in a friendly scheduled as part of the preparation for the clash with Volga – playing in the top-flight for the first time since being reformed in 1998. Continue reading

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FC Krasnodar 2-2 Anzhi Makhachkala

The first half formations.

Big-spending Anzhi Makhachkala have fallen seven points behind table-toppers CSKA Moscow after the Dagestani side could only draw 2-2 with fellow 2011 surprise package FC Krasnodar.

Round 16 of the Russian Premier League’s 2011 season concluded with two of this year’s surprise packages coming together. Like city rivals Kuban, whom Krasnodar faced in the top-flight’s first ever non-Moscow derby last weekend, the home side were flying high in the table, and knew a win here could see them go sixth in a league of 16 teams. Putting that in perspective, Krasnodar were in the Russian third division just three years ago. But Slavoljub Muslin’s squad is definitely first division standard these days, with plenty of experience at the back, flair players like Andrei Gorbanets, and goalscorers like former Real Salt Lake and Kansas City Wizards striker Yura Movsisyan. Continue reading