Moscow (AFP) – Russian Premier League table-toppers Spartak Moscow hope to bounce back from last week’s 1-0 home defeat to minnows Ufa when they visit Zenit St Petersburg on Sunday.
Despite last weekend’s shock, Spartak still have a one-point lead at the top over second-placed reigning champions CSKA, while Zenit sit third, two points further back.
But a trip to Saint Petersburg will unlikely be an easy outing for the nine-time former champions, who won their last title in 2001.
Spartak manager Massimo Carrera refused to criticise his team for suffering their first loss of the season.
“It was a very difficult game as Ufa played a defensive style football,” he said. “We also had scoring chances and the result could have been different. But sometimes you lose when you don’t deserve a defeat.
“I don’t have any reproaches for my men. They played with a good spirit and fought for the win up to the very end. Hopefully our efforts will be rewarded in the next match.”
Last weekend, Zenit gave up a 2-0 lead to draw 2-2 with Anzhi Makhachkala but coach Mircea Lucescu insisted that slip-up is behind them.
CSKA will try to bounce back from their 1-0 Champions League home defeat at the hands of Tottenham when they visit last season’s runners-up Rostov, also on Sunday.
“We wanted to perform our top football in the match with Tottenham,” CSKA midfielder Zoran Tosic said. “Unfortunately we failed to achieve a positive result.
“But life goes on and now we must prepare for the match at Rostov the best possible way. Our main rivals (Spartak and Zenit) will clash head-to-head. I believe we can capitalize on that.”
Fixtures (all times GMT)
Tomsk v Ural Yeakaterinburg (0900), Samara v Anzhi Makhachkala (1130), Lokomotiv Moscow v Arsenal Tula (1400), Terek Grozny v Orenburg (1630)
Ufa v Amkar Perm (1100), Zenit St Petersburg v Spartak Moscow (1330), Rostov v CSKA Moscow (1600), Krasnodar v Rubin Kazan (1600)
25+ Channels With Sports & News
- Starting price: $33/mo. for fubo Latino Package
- Watch Premier League, Liga MX, MLS & World Cup
- Includes ESPN, FOX, Univision, TUDN and more
Favorite Leagues At The Best Price
- Starting price: $7.99/mo. for Live TV Package
- Watch Argentine league, Brasileirāo and Copa Libertadores
- Includes beIN SPORTS, GolTV, TyC Sports and more
Many Sports & ESPN Originals
- Price: $6.99/mo. (or get ESPN+, Hulu & Disney+ for $13.99/mo.)
- Features LaLiga, Bundesliga, MLS, Copa del Rey & more
- Also includes daily ESPN FC news & highlights show
Live TV, Soccer & Originals
- Starting price: $4.99/mo.
- Features Champions League, Serie A, Europa League & more
- Includes CBS, Star Trek & CBS Sports HQ
175 Premier League Games & PL TV
- Starting price: $4.99/mo. for Peacock Premium
- Watch 175 exclusive EPL games per season
- Includes Premier League TV channel plus movies, TV shows & more
Get All 3 And Save 30%
- $13.99/mo. for ESPN+, Disney+ & Hulu
- Includes Bundesliga, LaLiga, NHL & the home to UFC
- Features Marvel, Star Wars + shows & movies for your entire family