Europa League Preview: FC Krasndar – Crzena Zvezda

First Playoff Round, First Leg: Bulls Bullish or Red Star Gleaming? Krasnodar enters this week’s Europa League match against Serbian side Crvena Zvezda in some spotty form. As of late, they have drawn against two potential relegation candidates in the RFPL. Between these disappointing draws came a last gasp victory over FC Akhmat, who is expected to challenge for European places this year. On top of their questionable form, injury concerns abound for Krasnodar, with some newcomers potentially … [Read more...]

Champions League Preview: BSC Young Boys – CSKA Moscow

First Playoff Round, First Leg: Young Boys vs Old Boys? Young Boys By @FootballSwiss It was a mixed pre-season for Young Boys as they achieved some memorable wins and less than memorable defeats as they geared up for the new season. Lower league side Breitenrain, Salzburg and Russian side Grozny all defeated YB with Akhmat winning 4-1 at the beginning of the July. YB only managed two wins during their preparations with those coming against Wacker Innsbruck of Austria and more … [Read more...]

Season Preview: FC Ural

Ural will look back on 2016-17 as the season that could have been; reaching the Russian Cup Final for the first time was a momentous achievement for a side more accustomed to battling relegation than fighting for continental football, and the financial advantages a Europa League run would have brought could have offered extra security. As it is, they prepare to move into the redeveloped Centralniy Stadium later this year with a reasonably settled squad under the man who effectively resurrected … [Read more...]

Confederations Cup Preview: Russia – Mexico

After losing to Portugal earlier this week, Russia travel back to Kazan, where they also played against New Zealand, with the need to beat Mexico in order to emerge from the group stages of the Confederations Cup. A draw will be enough to take Mexico through and a point would only suffice for Russia in the unlikely event that New Zealand beat Portugal. Last time out The hosts are in danger of missing out on a semi-final spot after losing 1-0 to Portugal in Moscow. Cristiano … [Read more...]

Confederations Cup Preview: Russia – Portugal

Russia will look to build on their 2-0 opening-day win over New Zealand when they play European champions Portugal in Moscow. The match will be played at the Spartak Stadium in Moscow, usually known as Otkritie Arena, and the hosts go into the game with confidence against a Portuguese side that drew 2-2 with Mexico on Sunday. Last time out In St. Petersburg, Russia’s Confederations Cup campaign got off to the perfect start thanks to a Denis Glushakov-forced own goal and a Fedor Smolov … [Read more...]

Confederations Cup Preview: Russia – New Zealand

On Saturday evening, Russia kick off the Confederations Cup, when they take on Oceanian champions New Zealand in the opening fixture at St. Petersburg Stadium. We have teamed up with Ola Bjerkevoll from FootballOceania.com for this preview. Russia By John Gorrod (@John_CRFC) Russia’s Confederations Cup campaign kicks off against New Zealand in St Petersburg – and nothing but a win will suffice. The tournament is being viewed as a chance for Sbornaya to banish the ghosts of the disastrous … [Read more...]

Preview: Hungary – Russia

Monday afternoon, Russia play their first of two friendlies prior to the Confederations Cup at home field. Having started their preparations in Austria on training camp, Sbornaya have travelled to Budapest, where they take on Hungary. RFN has teamed up with the Tomasz Mortimer (@TMortimerFtbl) of Hungarianfootball.com for this preview.  Hungary By Tomasz Mortimer (@TMortimerFtbl) Hungary head into their game on Monday night against Russia with a depleted squad almost completely devoid of … [Read more...]

Play-Off Sunday: Who’ll Play in the RFPL Next Season?

On Sunday, two of the most important fixtures in the Russian football calendar are played – the final relegation/promotion play-off games for the Russian Football Premier League. These two games decide which teams get to play in the top flight with all the opportunities it presents, and which will play in the dreaded Football National League, where clubs go bankrupt left, right and centre, and the financial prospects are highly limited. This season’s two games are between Arsenal Tula and … [Read more...]

Russian Football is Back! Cup Previews

After a long winter break, Russian football finally returns this week with cup matches being played on Tuesday and Wednesday, and the Russian Football Premier League returning on Friday with the game between FC Rostov and Tom Tomsk, a game that has been moved from Tomsk in Siberia to Rostov-on-Don due to the weather. First of all, however, we have to get through the quarterfinals of the Russian Cup, where the draw is as follows: Match 1: FC Krasnodar - Ural Yekaterinburg Krasnodar has … [Read more...]

Preview: Zenit St. Petersburg – Anderlecht

Zenit (0) v (2) Anderlecht, Thursday 6pm GMT, St Petersburg First Leg Mircea Lucescu didn’t fare quite so well with reacquainting his players with competitive action after the enforced winter layoff as a thunderbolt double from Frank Acheampong put the Belgians marginally in control of this tie. Zenit were ponderous, wasteful in possession and disjointed in attack, so there is plenty to work on ahead of the return leg if Russia’s strongest squad left in Europe is to continue their … [Read more...]