Bibras Natkho Dmitri Khokhlov

Scoreless Again

1:51 PMAleks Vee

Rubin Takes the Lead

Central Stadium at Kazan, Russia. Photo: Kate Lokteva
The home team led the first half in possession, their home field advantage apparent from the first minutes of the match. However, they had few serious attempts at scoring. Rubin entered Dynamo's box just as the match began. Fans saw some solid goalkeeping from Roman Berezovsky. Rubin's Nelson Valdez took Eremenko's cross inside the box, but ended up offside. The Portuguese forward's presence made a real impact for his team. His attempts were often made possible by teammate Bibras Natkho, whose pass on the 23rd minute allowed Valdez to take a shot from inside the box. Once again, Berezovsky was there to save Dynamo. Dynamo's Luke Wilkshire earned his usual yellow for a slide on Cristian Ansaldi. The most dangerous moment of the first half occurred on the 35th minute when a fast shot by Karadeniz was saved by Berezovsky. Ryazantsev shot on the rebound, but Marko Lomic cleared the ball away in time. Dzsudzsak picked up the ball from captain Kuranyi, but his shot was wide of the net. Dynamo's best attempt came from none other than the captain himself, whose shot from outside the box went high of the far post. Rubin led 63:37% in possession before halftime. This was the 7th time this season that Dynamo could not score in the first half.

The home team began the second half the same way as the first, retaining possession and creating chances. Natkho's shot on the 48th minute was saved by Berezovsky. Dynamo's Yusupov was booked, like Wilkshire, for a foul on Ansaldi. Rubin earned their 4th corner of the match, leading to Ryazantsev's attempt at the far post, but Semshov was there to head the ball away. Though both teams were still scoreless, the guests displayed some great defending that was nice to watch after their not-so-successful start to the season. Venezuelan forward Salomon Rondon made his debut for Rubin Kazan on the 63rd minute after being subbed in for Karadeniz. The former Malaga player was quite active in the last twenty minutes of the match. Dynamo got a few crosses into the opposition's box, but lost the ball after a rebound and several bad passes. Misimovic had a brilliant long cross to Kokorin, who could have gone one-on-one with the keeper if he had reached the ball. Rubin earned a free kick at a dangerous position outside of the 18-yard box after Yusupov's unnecessary foul. The kick was taken by Eremenko, whose shot from 23 meters graced the far post, landing in the lower left corner past Roman Berezovsky. There was no way the keeper could have known where the ball was going, and it looked as though there was a slight ricochet after the kick, which may have changed the direction of the ball.

Rubin takes the 2nd spot on the leader board after the 4th matchday of the season.

At this point, you really can't blame interim coach Dmitri Khokhlov – he's only been with the team for two games, one of which was a Europa League qualifier against the not-so-technical Scottish team Dundee United. He hasn't had much time to really make an impact in terms of RPL results. It'll take lots of patience from both the fans and the manager to turn the beat around for the legendary team.

Russian Premier League 2012/2013
- 4th matchday -
Sunday, August 12, 2012, 11AM (EST)

Rubin Kazan vs. Dynamo Moscow - 2:0 (0:0)
Arena: Central Stadium (Kazan, Russia)
Referee: Vladimir Kazmenko (Rostov-on-Don)
Goals:
1:0 ('78) Bibras Natkho
2:0 ('90+) Roman Eremenko

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