The Russian Premier League returns to the fold with a high-octane fixture this weekend as league-leaders Zenit Saint Petersburg take on an in-form PFC Sochi at the Gazprom Arena. Both teams have been excellent this season and will want to make a statement with a victory in this game.
Zenit Saint Petersburg are currently at the top of the Russian Premier League table with 21 points in 10 games. The home side was held to a 1-1 draw by second-placed Spartak Moscow in its previous game and will want to return to winning ways in this fixture.
PFC Sochi, on the other hand, picked up an emphatic 4-2 victory against FC Rostov in their previous match and will be confident going into this game. The away side is currently in fourth place in the Russian Premier League standings and can potentially move further up the table with a positive result in this game.
Zenit Saint Petersburg vs PFC Sochi Head-to-Head
Zenit Saint Petersburg have faced PFC Sochi a total of five times and have managed four victories against the away side. PFC Sochi have won only one game against Zenit Saint Petersburg and will want to improve their record in this fixture.
The previous meeting between these two teams resulted in a narrow 2-1 victory for Zenit Saint Petersburg. Malcom and Sardar Azmoun got on to the scoresheet on the day and will feature in the game this weekend.
Zenit Saint Petersburg form guide in the Russian Premier League: D-W-D-W-D
PFC Sochi form guide in the Russian Premier League: W-D-L-W-W
Also Read: Serie A 2019/20: Team of the season
Zenit Saint Petersburg vs PFC Sochi Team News
Zenit Saint Petersburg
Zenit Saint Petersburg will be unable to field Sebastian Driussi against PFC Sochi. Andrey Lunev is also injured and has been ruled out of this fixture. Wendel has joined the club from Sporting Lisbon and might make a substitute appearance in this game.
Injured: Sebastian Driussi, Andrey Lunev
PFC Sochi will have to do without Aleksey Pomerko and Ivelin Popov in this fixture. Ibrahim Tsallagov is currently recovering from a muscle injury and remains a doubt for this game.
Injured: Aleksey Pomerko, Ivelin Popov
Doubtful: Ibrahim Tsallagov
Zenit Saint Petersburg vs PFC Sochi Predicted XI
Zenit Saint Petersburg XI (4-4-2): Mikhail Kerzhakov; Douglas Santos, Dejan Lovren, Yaroslav Rakitskiy, Vyacheslav Karavaev; Daler Kuzyaev, Wilmar Barrios, Magomed Ozdoev, Malcom; Sardar Azmoun, Artem Dzyuba
PFC Sochi Predicted XI (3-4-3): Soslan Dzhanaev; Sergey Terekhov, Ivan Miladinovic, Miha Mevlja; Elmir Nabiullin, Christian Noboa, Artur Yusupov, Timofey Margasov; Joaozinho, Anton Zabolotny, Nikita Burmistrov
Zenit Saint Petersburg vs PFC Sochi Prediction
Zenit Saint Petersburg will welcome Malcom and Sardar Azmoun back into their side for this fixture and hold the upper hand against PFC Sochi. With Artem Dzyuba in exceptional form, the home side has a potent attacking force and is likely to dominate the ball in this game.
PFC Sochi are known to punch above their weight, however, and their ability to create chances in the final third cannot be underestimated. The away side has its fair share of gifted midfielders and can trouble Zenit Saint Petersburg in this game.
Zenit Saint Petersburg have been clinical this season and have also fielded a robust defensive line. PFC Sochi have plenty of work to do ahead of this game and might not be able to overcome what is set to be a difficult challenge.
Prediction: Zenit Saint Petersburg 2-1 PFC Sochi
Also Read: 10 Greatest Football Managers of all timePublished 14 Oct 2020, 21:39 IST