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Zenit Shamed in Moscow Loss

Published: March 19, 2014 (Issue # 1802)



  • Although Zenit outshot their opponents, they were unable to find a way past CSKAs goalkeeper and Russia national team member Igor Akinfeev.
    Photo: fc-zenit.ru

A difficult week for FC Zenit St. Petersburg was capped off by a 1-0 loss to reigning champions and bitter rivals CSKA Moscow on Mar. 15 as the clubs chances of retaking the Russian Premier League title took yet another blow.

Bulgarian midfielder Georgi Milanovs stunning 32nd-minute strike was the difference in Zenits first game under interim manager Sergei Semak after Zenits Italian manager Luciano Spalletti was fired at the beginning of last week following a disappointing 0-0 home draw with relegation-threatened Tom Tomsk on Mar. 9.

Related: Midfielder Roman Shirokov Leaves Zenit for Krasnodar

Although Zenit outshot their opponents, they were unable to find a way past CSKAs goalkeeper and Russia national team member Igor Akinfeev.

Zenits loss meant Lokomotiv Moscow expanded their lead at the top of the table to three points after drawing 0-0 with FK Amkar Perm on Sunday.

Obviously the match didnt put us in a good mood, Semak told Zenits English-language website after the game. We did alright at the beginning of the match, and were active on offense and reliable in defense, but the goal we allowed changed the course of the game.

Related: St. Petersburg Football Team Zenit Fires Coach

Zenit now faces a difficult trip to Dortmund for the second-leg of their UEFA Champions League tie tonight against Borussia Dortmund, last years runners-up in the competition, in hope of overturning a two-goal deficit after losing 4-2 at home to the Germans in February.

Spallettis firing comes after Zenits seven-point lead at the top of the league disappeared due to a string of poor performances. Poor league form was the catalyst for the removal of Spalletti, who won the league twice with the St. Petersburg club.

Nicolas Lombaerts, the clubs Belgian defender, was quick to shift the blame for Spallettis firing away from the club. If the coach is fired, the players should take a look at themselves, he said following the loss to CSKA. In the end, if he was fired, then were one of the main causes.

On Tuesday, Zenit announced it had agreed to terms with Portuguese manager Andre Villas-Boas to replace Spalletti on a two-year contract. He will be officially introduced as Zenits new manager Thursday.

In other action from around the league, Rostov-on-Don won 2-0 in Samara against Kryliya Sovetov while Kuban Krasnodar dented Dinamo Moscows title hopes in a 1-1 draw on Mar. 15. On Sunday, asides from Lokomotivs 0-0 draw in Perm, Rubin Kazan won 3-1 at home over Volga Nizhny Novgorod. Both Monday games ended in draws as Tom Tomsk drew 1-1 with Krasnodar and Spartak Moscow drew 2-2 with Anzhi Makhachkala.





 


ALL ABOUT TOWN

Thursday, Jan. 29



Attend a master class on how to deal with complicated business negotiations today at the International Banking Institute, 6 Malaya Sadovaya Ulitsa. Running from 3 to 6 p.m., Vadim Sokolov, an assistant professor at the St. Petersburg State University of Economics, will introduce aspects of managing the negotiation process and increasing its effectiveness. Attendance is free with pre-registration by telephone on 909 3056 or online at www.ibispb.ru



Celebrate what would be writer Anton Chekhov's 155th birthday at the Bokvoed bookshop at 46 Nevsky Prospekt. Starting at 5 p.m., the legendary author will be feted with readings of his stories and short performances based on his plays by various St. Petersburg actors. Chekhov's books will also be offered at a 15% discount during the event.



Friday, Jan. 30



The Lermontov Central Library, 19 Liteyny Prospekt, will screen 'Almost Famous in English with Russian subtitles at 6:30 p.m. Cameron Crowe's Academy Award-winning comedy from 2000 stars Billy Crudup, Kate Hudson, and Patrick Fugit, and tells the story of a budding music journalist at Rolling Stone magazine in the 1970s. Admission is free.



Meet renowned Russian poet, journalist and writer Dmitry Bykov, famous for his biographies of Boris Pasternak, Bulat Okudzhava and Maxim Gorky, and winner of 2006 National Bestseller Award. Bykov will read old and new poems as well as answer questions about his works at the St. Petersburg Philharmonic, Main Hall, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at 1,000 rubles and are available at city ticket offices and the from the Philharmonic website www.philharmonia.spb.ru.



A retrospective of the films of Roman Polanski starts today at Loft-Project Etagi, 74 Ligovsky Prospekt, with a screening of Repulsion at 7 p.m. and Rosemarys Baby at 9:15 p.m. The series runs through Feb. 4 and will include Polanski's eminently creepy The Tenant, the cult comedy The Fearless Vampire Killers and Cul-de-sac among others. Tickets are 150-200 rubles and the complete schedule is available at www.vk.com/artpokaz/



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