Zenit lose ground on CSKA after home defeat
Reigning champions Zenit St Petersburg missed the chance to join CSKA Moscow at the top of the Russian Premier League after suffering a 2-0 home defeat to FC Krasnodar on Saturday.
Moscow: Reigning champions Zenit St Petersburg missed the chance to join CSKA Moscow at the top of the Russian Premier League after suffering a 2-0 home defeat to FC Krasnodar on Saturday.
Iceland centre-back Ragnar Sigurdsson and Colombian midfielder Ricardo Laborde set last season`s third-placed side FC Krasnodar on their way to a first ever win in Saint Petersburg as they move up to sixth place.
"This is the win that we really needed to boost our self-confidence," FC Krasnodar manager Oleg Kononov said.
"Today we played well in defence and threatened back on the counter-attack and it worked perfectly.
"I`m pleased with both the result and my team`s performance."
Andre Villas-Boas` Zenit remain second, three points behind CSKA, who beat Spartak 2-1 in the Moscow derby on Friday.
Zenit dominated possession from the off but it was Sigurdsson, who silenced the home fans in the 26th minute with a close-range header from Laborde`s free-kick.
Zenit, spurred on by a capacity 21,000 crowd at Stadion Petrovsky, poured forward in search of the equaliser but they were hit on the counter as Laborde made it 2-0 five minutes after the break, beating `keeper Yury Lodygin from 30 yards.
"Today everything went the wrong way for us," Zenit head coach Villas-Boas said.
"We experienced problems in the first half with our attacking football and we failed to control Krasnodar`s counter-attacks.
"We came out with a strong spirit in the second half but conceded the second goal and couldn`t get back into the game," added the former Porto, Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur boss.
In the late Saturday kick-off, two-time former champions Rubin Kazan, who have struggled so far this campaign, chalked up their first win with a 1-0 success at Kuban Krasnodar.
Turkish veteran Karadeniz Gokdeniz was the hero as he scored Rubin`s first goal of the campaign in the 33rd minute.
Rubin are finally off the mark having lost their previous four matches.