Cassierra blasts through shaky CSKA defence in emphatic win

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Sochi 4-1 CSKA Moscow
Saturday 6 November, Fisht Central Stadium

Goals: Sochi - Yusupov 3’, Cassierra 14’, 16’, Yurganov 89’; CSKA - Zaynutdinov 56’
Man of the Match: Mateo Cassierra (Sochi)

Sochi raced out of the traps to take an early lead with brutal efficiency that even Vladimir Fedotov could scarcely have imagined, thundering their way into a three-goal lead after quarter of an hour - each time punishing sloppy mistakes in the CSKA defence.

First, Nikita Burmistrov snatched up possession after Ivan Oblyakov’s slip just three minutes in, crossed to a wide open Mateo Cassierra who unselfishly looked up and squared the ball to Artur Yusupov to slam a firm finish over Igor Akinfeev from six yards.

Cassierra was the grateful recipient of a lapse in Igor Diveev’s concentration, side-footing home when gifted the ball a few yards out 10 minutes later, and before the shell-shocked visitors could recover, the Colombian striker was at it again. Kirill Zaika made space for a cross through the six-yard box, but Diveev switched off and left the ball for Cassierra to slide in for his second.

Midway through the blistering opening period it should really have been four as yet another slip-up gifted a golden opportunity. Chidera Ejuke played a risky pass under pressure towards his own area, which Yusupov raced onto before beating his marker but lashing a shot just wide of the far post from a slightly tight angle. As if to rub it in, moments later CSKA had the ball in the back of the net, but it was rightly ruled out for offside.

The Armymen came out all guns blazing for the second half though, and didn’t have to wait long to pull one back. Ilzat Akhmetov drew a flying save from Nikolay Zabolotny, and from the resulting corner Baktiyor Zaynutdinov glanced a quality header in. Zabolotny somehow escaped a frantic goalmouth scramble shortly after as the momentum swung firmly in CSKA’s favour.

Despite their best efforts they couldn’t make a further breakthrough, and in the penultimate minute Igor Yurganov slid in a late goal just to make sure any late surge would be futile. Sochi even had time to hand brief minutes to Emmanuel Mamana and Ivelin Popov after injury layoffs to cap a successful evening’s work.

Sochi go second on 27 points, while CSKA remain fifth on 23 points.

Next RPL fixtures: Sunday 21 November - CSKA vs Khimki; Sochi vs Rubin

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