Cordoba & Krychowiak penalty settle fiery battle over Spartak

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Krasnodar 2-1 Spartak Moscow
Saturday 20 November, Krasnodar Stadium

Goals: Krasnodar - Cordoba 16', Krychowiak (pen) 61'; Spartak - Sobolev (pen) 45+4'
Man of the Match: Remy Cabella (Krasnodar) 

A pulsating first half ended in the most fraught fashion possible after Sergey Petrov dragged down Mikhail Ignatov on the area, leaving Aleksandr Sobolev a chance to level from the spot. 

His first attempt was struck poorly after an attempted bunny hop in the run-up, but the assistant referee flagged for encroachment as he took it, and a retake was ordered. This time he struck it firmly into the opposite corner to head into the break level. 

Krasnodar had carved Spartak's defence apart for the opener with clinical precision to lay an unmissable tap-in on a plate for Jhon Cordoba. Eduard Spertsyan sprayed a  ball across to Remy Cabella, but instead of shooting as most people expected, the Frenchman threaded an inch perfect first-time cross through the eye of a needle to Cordoba to apply the finishing touch. 

There were plenty of feisty challenges flying in - and a penalty appeal from Jordan Larsson turned down - and once again the referee's decision was central. 

Aleksey Ionov burst past Ayrton Lucas at speed to latch onto Spertsyan's fantastic flick after some fine interplay, and was caught by the Brazilian. Aleksey Sukhoi had no hesitation pointing to the spot, before Grzegorz Krychowiak slammed the penalty confidently into the corner. 

Spartak showed great character to push forward with the best chances, with Victor Moses and Quincy Promes causing havoc out wide and Aleksandr Sobolev making a nuisance of himself in the box. 

Chernikov was almost rewarded for a deft volley a few minutes from time, only to be denied by a sensational flying fingertip save from Aleksandr Selikhov. 

Krasnodar go fifth on 24 points, while Spartak stay 10th on 19 points.

Next RPL fixtures: Saturday 27 November - Khimki vs Krasnodar; Monday 29 November - Ufa vs Spartak

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