Monday, September 28, 2009

Lokomotiv 10 match unlosing streak comes to an abrupt end.

With Lokomotiv winning the home match 4-0, and CSKA slipping against Zenit, everyone believed that it would be easy for Lokomotiv to clinch the temporary third place. However, as I predicted, Lokomotiv were unable to beat Terek Grozny and it was no surprise that coming the end of the match Lokomotiv failed to take any points from the Sultan Blimkhanov Stadium, especially with the way Lokomotiv played the last two games against Spartak Nalchik and FC Moscow. Unfortunately yesterday's encounter showed Loko's shortcomings both in attack and defence. Terek's two goals resulted from two defensive errors (Dujmovic and Kocsis) while Loko's goal involved the two central defenders. It's clear that the right back slot is not for Kocsis while on the other end with Wagner out injured Lokomotiv were lacking that player which connects the midfield with the attack. Torbinsky's place is on the wing, Kaita seems not up to level while for the don't know time there is no place for Odemwingie. Despite his undoubted skill it's clear that he doesn't give half of his all for Lokomotiv. Lokomotiv do miss Bilyaletdinov. For the match, Syomin kept the usual 4-2-3-1 formation. Guilherme started in goal while Kocsis, Asatiani, Rodolfo and Yanbaev completed the back four. The midfield comprised of Dujmovic, Kaita - his first ever start for Lokomotiv, Gatagov, Torbinsky and Odemwingie. Sychev completed the starting 11.

Bouyant both from their intent of revenge for the 4-0 suffered in May and their fans at the stadium who created one hack of a hostile atmosphere Terek started the match in a very aggressive manner. Terek came close to open to score within ten minutes through Adlan Katsaev whose shot went just centimetres wide. Few minutes later Terek threatened again but Guilherme responded well. On the other end Sychev came very close to break the deadlock. Good work on the right by Odemwingie was followed by a pin point cross onto the path of Sychev who from just 6 yards out was certain to score. However a goal saving tackle from former Lokomotiv man Sergey Omelyanchuk saved a certain goal; much to the disbelief of the Lokomotiv striker. Soon after Terek opened the score. Dujmovic pass was intercepted by Terek keyman Shamil Lakhiyalov, who in turn ran through on the keeper. As the Terek number 10 was going to shoot he noticed that the Loko defence were all on the wrong foot and thus instead of shooting he passed the ball on to the right to Sadaev, who in open goal made no mistake. One up for Terek and all to play for Loko.

In the second half Lokomotiv came out very more aggressive. Despite dominating the play it took 15 minutes to the Railwaymen to threaten Dikan. A pin point cross from Kocsis on the right was perfectly met by Sychev. Unfortunately the keeper was equal to the bullet header. When the equalizer was a matter of when rather then if, Terek hit Lokomotiv cold and doubled the score. Kocsis made a mess of a what should have been an easy cross to clear and Daniel Pancu took full prize from Loko's defensive error. 35 minutes to play, 2-0 for Terek and game over for Lokomotiv. Even if there was still time to at least snatch a draw, Lokomotiv looked demoralised and lost their momentum. However with ten minutes to play Lokomotiv opened the match through a goal which involved the two supposed less likely to score - the two central defenders. Assisted by Asatiani, Rodolfo expertly put the ball in the far bottom left corner giving the keeper no chance. After the goal, Lokomotiv seemed to had found their momentum again and tried to snatch the equalizer. Soon Semin replaced Kocsis with Minchenko as Lokomotiv surged forward and forward. However no matter how much Lokomotiv tried, Terek managed to hold on to victory, much to delight of the fans and club president Ramzan Kadyrov.

Player Ratings
Guilherme - 6
- did relatively nothing apart collecting the ball two times from the net. Could do nothing with any of the goals.

Kocsis - 4.5 - poor match from Romanian. It's clear that the job on the right flank is not for him. Unfortunately responsible for Terek's second goal
Asatiani - 6.5 - closed well and good vision to pick out Rodolfo
Rodolfo - 7.5 - Loko's best player on pitch. Goal saving tackle and excellent finishing on the other end.
Yanbaev - 6.5 - Surged forward whenever possible. Good match from the international

Dujmovic - 5 - mixed match from the Croatian. Gave away the ball for Terek's first goal.
Kaita - 5.5 - poor. Lost as many balls as he won.
Odemwingie - 6 - Just a cross and an attempt on goal throughout the whole 90 minutes
Torbinsky - 6 - lacking match practice and maybe his place is on the wings
Gatagov - 6 - sent in some good crosses. Need to find some consistency

Sychev - 6.5 - Good attempt at goal. Lacked service.

Glushakov - 6.5
- slotted in very well.
Minchenko - N/A - no time to impress.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Torbinsky out injured, Charles to return.

According to, Dmitry Torbinsky is expected to skip the match between Lokomotiv and Chechenians Terek Grozny due to injury sustained in his ankle last Saturday during the encounter against FC Moscow. A real pity. After loosing Bilyaletdinov to Everton and Wagner to injury, the loss of Torbinsky is something really unwanted at this stage. With an eye over the third place, such injuries will for sure hamper Lokomotiv's progress. I just hope I am proven wrong. At least Lokomotiv can count on the return of Charles. Actually, the same website reports that the former Cruzeiro midfielder is expected to play part in the upcoming encounter. Let's hope for the best; it ain't an easy trip for sure!!

Basha to cross Moscow?

According to "Sport-Express" Spartak Moscow are interested in the services of Montenegrin central defender Marko Basha. The same website reports that during last summer Spartak tried to snap Basha, however head coach Yury Semin opposed such move and thus the transfer never materialised.

With Spartak making the priority of signing a reliable defender, and Basha finding his chances limited by the partnership of Asatiani & Rodolfo, a move can be on the cards. Recall that the last transfer occured between the two arch-rivals was that of Dmitry Torbinsky, in December of 2007.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Sychev penalty enough to see Loko off FC Moscow in derby

A penalty scored by Dmitry Sychev just before the stroke of the half time was just enough to see Lokomotiv beating the challenge of fellow Moscovite team FC Moscow in a derby, which although generally regarded as the least hot Moscow derby amongst all other derbies, in the end it resulted to be quite a heated affair. Despite only 5 yellow cards were shown, the first within just 16 seconds, tackles flew in high and some of them, on another day could have been more severely punished. The penalty was crystal clear, and for sure the citizens cannot even think to complain about it. However on the end, they do have a right to appeal for penalty in the first quarter as Kocsis cleared touched the ball with his hand, even though unintentionally and in a close distance. In this case the Railwaymen were lucky. Huh, no big deal at all. Lokomotiv had been unlucky for nearly half a season. Finally, and really finally, lady luck seem to smile on us. Moreover the win over FC Moscow put Lokomotiv in the momentary third place, surpassing arch-rivals CSKA in the process. CSKA is due to play tomorrow in a yet another Moscow derby, this time versus Dynamo. Well, unsurprisingly tomorrow I will be rooting for the guys in the blue shirt; I just hope they give us a hand to keep our 3rd place.

For the match against FC Moscow, Semin made only 2 changes. Rodolfo, who recovered from injury regained his place in the backline. On the other end Gatagov, replaced the injured Wagner. The other nine were the same as last week's encounter in Nalchik, that is Guilherme in goal; Kocsis, Asatiani, Rodolfo & Yanbaev at the back; and Dujmovic, Glushakov, Odemwingie, Torbinsky, Gatagov together with Sychev made the starting eleven. The match kicked-off in a one hack of aggressive manner. Just 16 seconds on the clock and Martin Jakubko, the Slovakian FC Moscow striker was booked for quite a hard challenge on Dujmovic. I sit and wondered, wow that's an aggressive way to start the match. As minutes passed by, both sets of team seemed very reluctant to stay back and let the other team do the play. Within just two minutes FC Moscow's Belarusian keeper Zhevnov was already on alert in order to deny Gatagov. On the other ended Samedov threatened Loko's back four. The first real chance of the match fell onto the feet of Sychev. A perfect cross from the right was misjudged by Okoronkwo, and with Sychev in the thereabouts, the Russian striker took the ball and hit a crushing shot, to which Zhevnov replied relatively well. Soon after, on the end, a cross from the right from former Loko winger Samedov, sweatly fell into the path of Cesnauskis (who was literally forgotten by Loko backline), who after doing well to take an advantage of the indecisive Guilherme, however failed to deposit the ball into open net as Asatiani recovered well and saved the day for Lokomotiv. By the half of the first half the match was transfered to the middle of the pitch as neither team could play the final ball. Moreover by now the match became truly aggressive. Incredible. To say the truth for a second I wondered if CSKA or Spartak were our opponenets.

Kocsis positioning was once again exposed as Cesnauskis threatened again on the left. However Kocsis recovered well in order to stop the Lithuanian from making damage; albeit replays showed that Kocsis did it with the help of his hand. On the other end, just before the stroke of the half time, Lokomotiv, maybe a little bit undeservly went in front. After playing a good one two with Sychev, Torbinsky stormed into the Citizen's area, only to be illegally stopped by Sheshukov. With no hesitation Sukhina pointed to the spot, whom Sychev confidentially blasted at the top of the net, thus giving Zhevnov no chance. One up for Lokomotiv in the break. In the second half, the players came out a little bit less aggressive. Actually the match lost some of it's momentum and it was no surprise that coming the end of the match, neither Loko nor FK really threatened in the second 45. 1-0 for Lokomotiv was the final score and off to the third place we go; even though momentarily. Go Loko!!
Player Ratings
Guilherme - 6.5 - never really tested. Strong on handling and distribution. Always on alert.
Kocsis - 5.5 - played again out of position. Did relatively well however its clear that the lad never marked a man before. Not so defensively aware and marking really let him down.
Asatiani - 7 - calming presence at the back and did one goal-saving tackle
Rodolfo - 6.5 - captain on the day, marshalled the back four relatively well.
Yanbaev - 7 - seem to be more at home on the left than on the right. Another good match from the Russian Speedy Gonzalez.
Dujmovic - 6 - failed to mark his authority. Flew in some hard tackles. Could have been sent off on another day.
Glushakov - 6 - energetic display from the young midfielder. Had also one good shot
Gatagov - 6 - quite a poor match from the youngster. Need to find a little bit of consistency.
Odemwingie - 5.5 - poor showing like much of the midfield from the Nigerian. Seem to be deeply unmotivated. Should have doubled the score.
Torbinsky - 7 - had some good runs and was the one most likeliest to score. Won the penalty for the men in red.
Sychev - 7 - a relatively quiet game from the striker. Usual work rate and gave no chance to Zhevnov with his penalty.
Kaita - 6.5 - came in for Glushakov and worked very hard in the midfield. Slotted in very well.
Kuzmin - N/A - no time to impress. Wondering why Kocsis is prefered over the former FC Moscow full back.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Railwaymen interested in Belarusian youngster

According to, the Railwaymen are interested in the services of Belarusian young striker Maxim Skavysh. Currently the 19th year old plys his trade at Belarusian top club BATE Borisov. According to the same website, Lokomotiv had been following Skavysh for several months. The Railwaymen are expected to monitor closely the young striker, especially by watching him in action during BATE's upcoming UEFA Europa League campaign against European heavyweights such as Benfica.

Moreover according to reports emanating from Belarus, Lokomotiv aren't the only Russian club interested in the youngster. Actually Maxim, who scored 10 goals to date in the Belarusian Premier Liga attracted the interest of other leading Russian clubs.

Wagner sidelined for three weeks

Lokomotiv Moscow's new boy Wagner, who suffered an injury during the match last Sunday versus Spartak Nalchik is expected to be sidelined for three weeks. Ultrasounds revealed that the Brazilian wizard teared his Quadriceps femoris muscle, which makes part of the thigh. Recall that Wagner suffered the injury in the first half and had to be replaced by Gatagov.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Lokomotiv take home the 3 points

After a stop due to the international break, today Lokomotiv resumed it's quest to obtain the third place. Although playing a little bit poorly, Lokomotiv at least delivered and obtained the three points. Spartak Nalchik will for sure feel a little bit hard done however no one can say that Lokomotiv stole anything from the match. The penalty was crystal clear and it was deservedly awarded. To be sincere, today I couldn't follow Lokomotiv the way I did to date. My mind was too much full of thoughts. Every time i saw the ball going from one point to another I just couldn't help myself but reflect on what happened last Thursday. I was just running as Sychev, Odemwingie, Asildarov, Arshavin, Zhirkov, anyways just like any other football player till I fumbled and broke my ankle. How could my favourite sport treat me that way? 3 days had passed and still I cannot come in terms to the reality. I just couldn't watch the match without thinking, reflecting and wondering on what had happened to me. Actually I was too mixed up that I couldn't stay tuned to the whole match; that is this time I will be unable to rate the player's performances. For this, I offer you my apologies.

In order to cut off the boredom currently I am in, I was really looking forward for the Loko match. But well, also in this case life made things difficult for me. The page I usually used to watch Lokomotiv games couldn't load. Thus meaning that I lost the best first minutes of the match. Anyways the first minutes I watched gave me the impression that Lokomotiv weren't so motivated; however this can't be said to Loko's counterparts. Nevertheless they are in a relegation battle. But with a third place within reach I believe that we should have been a little more motivated. Keeping the same formation, Syomin made only two changes from last encounter against Kuban. Rodolfo's injury gave a chance to Mark Basha to impress while on the other hand Torbinsky was favoured over Gatagov. Guilherme started in goal while Kocsis, Asatiani and Yanbaev completed the back line. Dujmovic and Glushakov protected the back four while Odemwingie and Wagner together with Torbinsky assisted Sychev up front. As I had already said, the first half failed to produce any actions of note, albeit it forced Semin to replace Wagner with Gatagov. All this was due to injury to the former. The first half soon ended as it started. Nil-Nil was the score.

The second half seemed to continue the way the first one ended. However as time passed by Lokomotiv started to hold a little bit more possesion and restrict the home club into their half. On the 64 the minute, Odemwingie laid the ball to Gatagov who in turn sprinted through onto Nalchik's area, only to be brought down by Nalchik defender Amisulashvili. Sychev lined up and made no mistake from 11 metres. Credit to Nalchik keeper Radic who guessed the way and got a touch onto the ball. However, luck was on Sychev side on the day. After the goal, the match continued the way it was, that is rarely were the times that Spartak threatened. Unsurprisingly Lokomotiv won the match and the three points which sent them into the third place. On the other side Spartak continue to languish in the 15th place and with their place in the Premier Liga looming.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Rest in Peace, Jacob

Yesterday, 9th September 2009 marked the first year from the death of our beloved Jacob Lekgetho, the South African player who graced our red-green shirt for 4 years before returning to South Africa after the death of his wife. Jacob, who according to Sport-Express lost his life after losing a lengthy battle with AIDS, played for Lokomotiv 76 times and scored 3 games.

Jacob will be for sure fondly remembered for his trademark runs down the left, determination, never-say-die attitude and above all, for his love for the club.
Rest in Peace Jacob, you will forever be in our hearts. . .

Loko beat Kazak champions Aktobe

In a friendly match played yesterday in Moscow, Lokomotiv recorded a win against fellow Kazakh champions Aktobe. The goals were both scored in the first half (29, 39) by Dmitry Sychev, who despite his recent fine form for Lokomotiv was still overlooked by Hiddink for a place in the Russian squad.

Despite a lot of positives could be derived from the friendly match, unfortunately Brazilian central defender Rodolfo picked up injury and had to be replaced. By today Lokomotiv should know the full extent of the injury suffered by Rodolfo. Hope for the best & congratulations to the boys!!

The starting line-up was the following:
Guilherme (Cech, 46), Kocsis, Asatiani (Kambolov, 60), Rodolfo (Sennikov, 14), Kuzmin, Torbinsky (Pavlov, 73), Dujmović, Glushakov, Wagner (Mujiri, 62), Minchenkov (Voinov , 79), Sychev.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Charles to return to Moscow in middle September

Lokomotiv Brazilian midfielder Charles is expected to stay in Brazil till September 14th. Recall that the defensive midfielder injured his inguinal ring and he underwent surgery under the guidance of the physiotherapist of his former club Cruzeiro.
Charles had been playing for the whole of three months through the pain. However as the injury agravated; the player himself and the management decided that it would be the best option to carry out an operation. All the best and get well soon Charles!!