Rostov vs Ural by Isaiah
Defeating all the odds, Rostov managed to get through to the Champions League play-off round, even though they were almost overwriteen after their 2:2 draw at home against Anderlecht in the first leg. However, Russians were awarded for their great fighting spirit on Wedneseday night, as the team looked much more concrete in attack and deservedly celebrated their victory.
They opened the scoreline in 28th minute with a goal from Noboa and it was easier for them from that moment on, they mostly waited on counter attacks and managed to hit the opponent again - in second minute of repetition with a goal from Azmoun. They will be playing against Ajax in the final round and do have proper chances to progress to the group stage. They have started the season with narrow victory over Orenburg and the team expects no less but another three pointer here.
Home side should be playing in 3-5-2 formation with Poloz and Bukharov as strikers. Iranian forward Sardar Azmoun suffered an injury in a game against Anderlecht and probably will not be risked here, being doubtful for now. Aleksandr Erokhin who missed the opening game, returned against the Belgium side and should be ready for this one as well.
Ural will be hoping to repeat the previous season, as the club can't expect for much more but a safe ending of the season without relegation trouble. They ended the previous season at eight position, quite far from the red zone, but at the same time, very far below the European tickets as well.
They made a surprise good start in the new season, winning 2:0 at home over Ufa, but this game will be much more difficult task for them. They sealed the victory with two goals inside the first halftime (via Emeljanov and Pavlyuchenko), leaving more of the ball possession in the second half to their guests, positive for them, without really endangering their lead and their goalkeeper.
Visitors from Ural should be playing in a bit defensive 4-2-3-1 formation with Pavlyuchenko as striker, but also with Kulakov, Pavlenko and Lungu to help him in offensive tasks. New signing Roman Pavlyuchenko started in a great form and he will be one of the key players for the visiting side to do something more meaningful in attack. Defender Vladimir Khozin is still recovering from a long term injury.
- FC Rostov have won their last 7 home matches (Premier League).
- FC Rostov have won their last 6 matches against Ural.
Players of Rostov are coming into this one with a morale boost after entrance in Champions League play-off round and should be motivated now to confirm the victory with another good performance, this time in the domestic league. Some rotation is possible, but I expect hard working home team to get a victory even easier than the odds suggest, they do have balanced and quality, quite deep roster.