|Photo: RIA Novosti. Vitaliy Timkiv|
Mordovia Pummel Rostov 3-0Not surprisingly, FC Rostov started off the first half with an attempt at storming the home team's net. Adamov got the ball in the middle of the box and had a shot that went wide of the post. The more enticing events of the match were yet to come. FC Mordovia led an exciting first half, scoring from a free kick by Osipov. A low ball bounced off the pitch in front of Pletikosa, who jumped out a little too late. Kalachev tested Mordovia's net on the 14th minute, but the shot went out for a corner. Despite playing a more active first half, Rostov were a bit on the safe side and did not leave their side of the pitch too often. It was all Mordovia from then on, and the guests were desperately trying to fend off the ball. The home team had a terrific combination on the 32nd minute, when Tomislav Dujmović, a midfielder on loan from Dynamo Moscow, gave a pass to Bober, who got the ball into the box. Ruslan Mukhametshin picked up the ball and took a shot, but it was just a bit wide. Neither team made any halftime substitutions, although Miodrag Bozovic had Edgaras Česnauskis come on for Benoît Angbwa on the 38th minute. The former proved to be quite effective later on in the game.
Mordovia kept up the initiative at the start of the second half, as Mukhametshin's shot from outside the box flew close to the crossbar. Rostov's Salata received the first yellow of the match after a dirty tackle. The major upset for Bozovic's team came on the 51st minute when Bober's pass to the previously tackled Ruslan Mukhametshin's younger brother, Rustem, resulted in a shot that was saved by Pletikosa from close range. However, the ball was still in play, and it ricocheted off of Rostov defender Dyakov's leg, resulting in an own goal. Rostov seemed a bit more motivated on the attack after conceding the second goal, but Mordovia's defense kept the guests from having any real chances. Rostov had one of their few attempts on the 58th minute. Cocis took a cross in the box, but his shot was unsuccessful. Mordovia weren't satisfied with the 2-0 lead, and Osipov attempted a double, but his shot went wide of the post. Pletikosa's heroic save on the 67th minute brightened up the game. Rustem Mukhametshin's shot from inside the box was saved by the Croatian keeper in mid-air. Maksim Rogov's shot for Mordovia was a close call as well. Rostov had a few more moments, but none amounted to a goal, and Mordovia's keeper Yurchenko kept a clean sheet. Ruslan Mukhametshin got Mordovia's third and final goal. He went one-one-one with Pletikosa and his shot was brilliantly executed - Ruslan picked up the ball and kicked it while it was still afloat, sending it to the upper right corner of the net. Pletikosa's fingertips barely grazed the ball, but who could blame him? Mordovia showed true class, and then some. A team that was promoted to the Premier League for the first time in its history, Mordovia is the epitome of what can happen to a club under a good manager. All it takes is having the right leader.
Russian Premier League, 3rd Week
FC Mordovia vs. FC Rostov - 3:0 (1:0)
1:0 - Osipov ('10)
2:0 - Dyakov ('51) (OG)
3:0 - Ruslan Mukhametshin ('90)