A sensation in the Russian Cup! The classics of “Rotor” and “Alania” gave a miraculous goal in the style of Kasymov
Anatoly Romanov September 27, 2023, 21:10 Moscow time
The teams were reduced, as in the 1990s, and Volgograd eliminated the leader of the First League.
The sign “Rotor” – “Alania” in the Russian Cup is a pleasant return to the 90s, when clubs competed in the fight for championship medals. The last time the teams from Volgograd and Vladikavkaz met was in the 2021/2022 season in the First League. But in the RPL there have been no matches between Rotor and Alania since 2004. And so far, unfortunately, there are no preconditions for what will happen in the coming years. If Vladikavkaz is the leader of the First League, then Volgograd now occupies only seventh place in one of the Second League groups.
The head coaches of the teams, Oleg Vasilenko from Alania and Sergey Popkov from Rotor, decided to rotate the team, however, there were many well-known figures on the field. For example, former Ufa partners Alexei Nikitin and Vyacheslav Krotov opposed it. The central defender signed a contract with the Volgograd club this summer after returning from Bosnia and Herzegovina, and the forward was loaned to the Vladikavkaz team from Paris NN a couple of weeks ago.
From the first minutes, Alania had greater ball possession and territorial advantage, while Rotor defended with a medium or low block in a 5-3-2. The locals defended better than the visitors attacking. Vasilenko’s team created tension in the Volgograd area only through set pieces. However, the leader of the First Division did not take his corners on dangerous shots. Only after half an hour of the match, a failed attempt to clear the ball by defender Danil Pelikh gave the Vladikavkaz team a chance: Batraz Khadartsev hit the rebounded ball from several meters, but Rotor goalkeeper Sergei Samok made the save.
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“Rotor” didn’t do much counterplay either. The forward duo Rashid Magomedov-Ilya Vorobyov lacked support from their teammates. Zenit graduate Vorobyov, who once even played for the blue and white first team in the Russian Cup, could have scored when he beat defender Alan Bagaev one-on-one, but the striker was disappointed by a marriage. Before the break the rival got excited, there were several tough confrontations and a mess. If the quality and intensity of the game left much to be desired, the players had no problems with emotions.
The cup match between Rotor and Alania attracted a fairly large number of spectators at the Volgograd stadium, where the 2018 World Cup matches were held. And at the beginning of the second half, Alania’s attacking midfielder Batraz Gurtsiev was about to make a real beauty for the fans. Bagaev took advantage and made a discount, and Gurtsiev tried to score himself. If the visiting player had not hit the home defender, he would probably have received applause for his goal even among the Volgograd crowd. But the masterpiece did not happen.
After the break, Rotor did not have any counterplay, so after an hour of play Popkov renewed the attack by changing both forwards. The coach got the substitutions right! New striker Mikhail Ageev caught his rival in a mistake. The Alania player made a bad back pass and goalkeeper Georgiy Natabashvili, who flew out of the goal, knocked down Ageev practically on the penalty line. When the referee showed a yellow card and awarded a penalty, it was thought that Alania was incredibly lucky to avoid the penalty and the goalkeeper being sent off. But this episode ended with a brilliant shot from Rizvan Akhmedkhanov. The ball went under the crossbar, Natabashvili did not help. Perhaps the goalkeeper has not yet recovered from the crash.
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In the 1990s, Alania’s star midfielder Mirjalol Kasymov scored goals from free kicks, but now the inhabitants of Vladikavkaz themselves suffered a goal of his style. This goal helped Rotor create a sensation: he eliminated the leader of the First League from the Russian Cup. In the end, Vasilenko’s team had a chance to recover and take the match to a penalty shootout, but it was Volgograd’s day.