MOSCOW, July 23 (RIA Novosti)
Two goals from Armenian-American striker Yura Movsisyan gave FC Krasnodar a surprise 2-1 win over Rubin Kazan in their first fixture of the new Russian Premier League season.
The match was the last fixture of an opening weekend that concludes with reigning champions Zenit St. Petersburg topping the table after their 2-0 defeat of Amkar Perm on Saturday.
Movsisyan gave Krasnodar the lead on 41 minutes, hitting a shot into the empty net after goalkeeper Giedrius Arlauskis, granted a rare start in place of Sergei Ryzhikov, parried Vladimir Koman’s shot.
Penalties at both ends just after the hour mark left the score 2-1 in Krasnodar’s favor, Movsisyan grabbing his second goal after Arlauskis brought down Marcio, before Bibras Natkho scored for Rubin following a foul by Alexander Ryazantsev.
In the first half, Rubin saw more of the ball, but it was Krasnodar who created better chances than their more illustrious opponents.
Rubin suffered their first shock on seven minutes, as Arlauskis deflected Movsisyan’s powerful shot into the path of Vladislav Ignatyev, who failed to control the ball with no-one between him and the goal.
The Rubin defense vanished on 31 minutes, leaving Movsisyan one-on-one with Arlauskis after picking up a long ball, but the goalkeeper charged out of his area and kicked the ball away from the striker’s feet.
Rubin registered more shots in the first-half, but they were of far inferior quality, the best coming on 14 minutes when Sergei Davydov lashed the ball into goalkeeper Nukri Revishvili’s body from close range.
In first-half stoppage time, Revishvili was called into service again, making a diving save to keep out Bibras Natkho’s free kick.
Rubin seemed invigorated after the break, and ex-Borussia Dortmund striker Nelson Haedo Valdes almost equalized after picking up Davydov’s lobbed pass, but saw his shot trickle wide of the far post.
Before Arlauskas gave away the penalty, he seemed unnerved after running out to deal with a Joaozinho breakaway, and there were later calls for a second penalty he was involved in a collision.
Krasnodar had chances to score a third, but Arlauskas dealt with a good Movsisyan chance on 67 minutes before Joaozinho saw his thunderous shot blocked with ten minutes remaining.
For Rubin, Roman Eremenko’s free-kick on 87 minutes seemed destined for the top corner of the goal, and only a spectacular leap from Revishvili denied the Finn an equalizer.
Rubin next play Alania Vladikavkaz on Sunday, while Krasnodar take on Terek Grozny on Monday.
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