Spartak Moscow vs PFC Sochi (By: Isaiah)
Spartak Moscow disappointed in the previous season, as the team ended only at the fifth position and will do everything possible to revert the things in the new one.
Of course, Zenit remains a favorite to win the title, but surely everyone expects them at least in the fight for the Champions League position if not the title itself.
Beside the victory over Sochi in the early phase of the preparations, they have lost to Rostov, winning over CSKA Moscow 3:1 and Gyor 3:0. As the last test game, they lost to Krasnodar 1:2 nine days ago.
Spartak has completed signing of forward Ponce from Roma, while Russian internationals Glushakov and Kombarov have left the club over the summer. Their coach Kononov should be having clean bill of health.
Sochi was one of the surprise packages in the previous season in Russian FNL, ending up as second just above Tomsk and Nizhny Novgorod.
They lost the title in the last phase of the race being winless in last three rounds, but it doesn't matter much since the first two teams earned their entrance to Premier League directly.
As for the preparations, the team has won over Luch, lost to Spartak Moscow, finishing the pre-season matches with victories over Radnicki Nis 2:0 and Croatian vice-champions Rijeka 2:1.
Top scorer from the previous season Barsov will miss due to a knee injury, while defender Yurganov remains suspended. They did change a team a bit, improving it, but their realistic target will be just avoiding the relegation somehow is possible. Zenit gave them four players on the loan deal as well.
As said, Spartak is one of the favorites to win the title and as such, it's difficult to see them having a lot of problems in this one. After all, they did crush the same opponent 7:1 just twenty days ago - of course, with both having rotated teams. All in all, Spartak should have no real problems here in order to open up the season in a proper way.
Spartak Moscow vs PFC Sochi predictions
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Spartak Moscow vs PFC Sochi betting preview represents the personal opinion of the author (Isaiah).