Matchday 21 Review: Dynamo sparkle away, Lantratov penalty king, Akhmat finally draw

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We have picked out our favourite stats and figures from the Russian Premier Liga matchday 21 fixtures.

2 - Spartak were brought back down to earth with a considerable bump after their exhilarating 2-0 win over historic rivals Dynamo last week by conceding two goals themselves this weekend in their defeat to Krasnodar. It marked Paolo Vanoli’s second loss in his first two home league games in charge, making him only the second Spartak manager after Michael Laudrup to carry that burden.

3 - Dynamo Moscow bounced back from their disappointing derby defeat at home to Spartak last weekend in emphatic fashion as they smashed four goals past Arsenal Tula to close the gap at the top to three points. It highlights their extraordinary away form, since it was their third consecutive away fixture in which they have scored three or more goals - the first time they have ever achieved such a feat in the top flight - and takes them to more away wins (7) than any other side.

4 - Ilya Lantratov was once again the penalty hero for Khimki this weekend as he kept out Artur Yusupov’s second-half spot kick, but this time his contribution fed into a tangible result as his side earned a point at home to Sochi. It was his fourth penalty save of the season, equalling the highest single-season tally in the last decade set by Ufa’s Aleksandr Belenov five years ago.

5 - Matchday 21 was one of the least successful for home sides all season, with no hosts winning across the eight matches for only the second time this campaign, and a mere five goals scored by them. This makes it the second-lowest scoring weekend for home sides after just two goals were scored by hosting teams on matchday 10.

7 - Although Arsenal are still in a relegation battle, they have at least an in-form pair of brothers in Evans and Kings Kangwa. Evans’ equaliser at the weekend against Dynamo Moscow marked the seventh direct goal contribution the pair have made from their side’s last eight goals in the RPL; Kings has laid on four assists and scored once, while Evans has scored twice.

15 - Rostov lifted themselves out of the relegation playoff zone with their away win over Rubin Kazan on Monday, thanks to Dmitry Poloz’s ninth goal of the season. His first-half strike improved his personal best season tally - and also boosted his record against his former club to 10 wins, more than against any other RPL side - but also put Valery Karpin’s side on 15 goals scored away from home this season. Only Zenit, Dynamo and Krasnodar have managed more on the road, while Ural have managed two goals fewer in total.

19 - Akhmat Grozny have finally ended one of the most unusual runs in Russian Premier Liga history this weekend, as they became the last side to finally record a draw after 20 matchdays without one. Their goalless stalemate in Ekaterinburg was not as simple as two lifeless attacks cancelling each other out either; Akhmat faced 19 shots from the hosts, although of the 30 total shots taken by both sides, only seven were on target.


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