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...]

Preview: Sparta Prague – FC Rostov

Sparta Prague (0) v (4) Rostov, Thursday First Leg In the preview for the first leg in Russia, we asked whether Rostov could continue their European adventure, and it’s safe to say that Kurban Berdyev’s men replied in the perfect way. Goals from Miha Mevlja, Dmitry Poloz, Christian Noboa and Sardar Azmoun secured a 4-0 victory, which should be more than enough for Rostov to book a ticket to the next stage of the tournament. After 32 minutes, with the score 1-0 to the home team, … [Read more...]

FC Rostov – Sparta Prague Preview: Can the European Adventure Continue?

Following a long and boring winter break, FC Rostov are eager to get back to competitive football, and continue the impressive European campaign that has already seen them defeat Bayern Munich and finish third in their Champions League group ahead of PSV Eindhoven. Rostov face Czech giants Sparta Prague, and will have deliver their absolute best to avoid facing suffering defeat like FC Krasnodar did against the same opponents last season. Top strikers on a defensive team Although Rostov’s … [Read more...]

Krasnodar – Fenerbahce Preview: A Chance for the New Boys to Shine

After a long winter break that saw some key business done for FC Krasnodar, they resume competitive action against Turkish giants Fenerbahçe on Thursday night, looking to improve on last season’s capitulation to Sparta Prague at the same stage. Russian clubs traditionally perform poorly in the knockout stages of continental competition, with many blaming the extended lack of match fitness, but with qualification for next year’s Europa League in the balance, Igor Shalimov’s side will be desperate … [Read more...]

Russian Premier League Preview Part Two: Rostov to Zenit

Rostov Manager: Kurban Berdeyev (Dec 2014) Last Season: RFPL - 2nd; Cup - 5th round RFN 2016-17 Prediction: Top Half Major Transfers In: Sardar Azmoun (CF - undisclosed - Rubin) Major Transfers Out: Guélor Kanga (CM - free - Red Star Belgrade), Byung-Soo Yoo (CF - released), Timofey Margasov (DR - released), Pavel Mogilevets (CM - loan expired - Zenit) Controversy rather than pure glory has surrounded Rostov's debut in the Champions League after last season's top goalscorer … [Read more...]