Russian Premier Liga: Week 3 Preview

Russian Premier Liga

Our footy writer previews some of the biggest pre-season fixtures taking place this weekend. 

With the football season edging closer and our favourite football league’s making an imminent return, we turn our attention to the Russian Premier Liga for the time being. As we enter round three, Zenit Saint Petersburg, Lokomotiv Moscow and Krasnodar are level on points as well as goal difference at the summit.

Meanwhile, champions Spartak Moscow IS placed 10th on the standing after playing to stalemates in their opening two clashes. The Russian Premier Liga is full of surprises so it’s best to play it safe at times – something I’m generally not used to doing. Find out what’s worth backing below.
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Saturday 29 July

FC Ural 16/10 | Draw 18/10 | UFA 39/20
Ural and UFA will open proceedings on Saturday afternoon in what promises to be a tightly contested affair. The home side are off the back of a hard-fought 1-0 win away to Dynamo Moscow while their opponents earned a well-deserved point against Spartak Moscow last time out.

Both teams are unbeaten after two matches with a win and a draw apiece. The last eight meetings between the sides have seen Under 2.5 goals scored between them. Follow the trend at 4/10, it’s a tad low in terms of value but it’s definitely one for the multiples.

Rubin Kazan 6/10 | Draw 5/2 | Arsenal Tula 47/10
Rubin Kazan have made a terrible start to the new campaign, suffering back-to-back defeats but put in a solid effort last time out besides going down 2-1 away to Zenit. They may have struggled at home last season but they should do enough to see off Arsenal, who failed to win a match on the road.

The Gunsmiths are off the back of a 1-0 home win over newly-promoted SKA Khabarovsk on Monday night and will look to build on that. However, Arsenal have lost their last 11 games on the road dating back to last year November and that doesn’t look like improving here. Get on the home win.

FC Akhmat Grozny 12/10 | Draw 39/20 | Dynamo Moscow 5/2
The final matchup on Saturday will see Akhmat Grozny take on Dynamo Moscow. The hosts have made a top start to the new season with two wins on the bounce – both nail-biting narrow 1-0 victories.

Dynamo Moscow have made a stuttering start but will be determined to find the form the lead them back to the Russian Premier Liga last season. I’m expecting to see more of a fight from the newcomers – back them on the win/draw Double Chance at 6/10.

Sunday 30 July

Amkar 31/20 | Draw 33/20 | Rostov 22/10
Sunday’s opening clash pits Amkar up against Rostov, the Red and Blacks have lost their opening two games, while Rostov have struggled, with one win, and one draw coming into this encounter.

Rostov finished in the top half of the table last season, claiming sixth spot but their record on their travels was horrendous, earning just two wins from 15 games. The last six meetings have seen Under 2.5 Goals – follow the pattern and fire at 3/10.

Lokomotiv Moscow 11/20 | Draw 26/10 | Anzhi 5/1
Lokomotiv and Anzhi Makhachkala are next up to do battle on Sunday evening. The Railroaders have made a spritely start to the new season with consecutive wins, scoring four goals and conceding just once.

Anzhi Makhachkala just about got up for the win last time out, edging Amkar 1-0. This meeting ended in a 4-0 triumph to Lokomotiv last season and they are tipped to come out on top yet again.

Tosno 17/2 | Draw 36/10 | Zenit 3/10
The weekend’s Russian football action will come to an end with new boys on the block Tosno squaring off against powerhouses Zenit. The home side have made a dreadful start to the season, suffering back-to-back losses, conceding three times without scoring.

Zenit are in opposite form with two wins on the spin and I can’t see this match going any other way but a victory for the Lions. Take the away win on the (-1) Handicap at 17/20!

Monday 31 July

Spartak Moscow 9/10 | Draw 47/20 | Krasnodar 29/10
Monday night’s only fixture will see champions Spartak Moscow go toe-to-toe with Krasnodar. The People's Team have drawn both their games, while their opponents have made the perfect start to the new campaign with two straight wins.

Spartak have won their last 10 home games with their last defeat coming in the form of a 1-0 defeat to UFA last year September. A cagey affair is on the cards with both sides expected to find the back of the net. Both Teams To Score – Yes – is tipped at 17/20.

Dinamo Moscow Win/Draw Double Chance 6/10
Lokomotiv Win 6/10
Zenit (-1) Handicap 17/20

Written by Aaron Crowie for @Hollywoodbets

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