The final of the Russian Football Cup turned out to be the most spectacular – the overcrowded Luzhniki stadium, where about 69 thousand fans gathered, was able to watch the Moscow derby: Spartak fought with Dynamo in its centennial. And if the white-whites finished the season in the top three (despite their devastating loss to their main rival Sochi in the final round), then the football year for the red-whites was not the most successful: in the Russian Premier League, the team took tenth place. Even in winter, the fans rejoiced – Spartak reached the Europa League playoffs from the first place in the group and was preparing to fight Leipzig, led by the former coach of red and white Domenico Tedesco. But sanctions against Russian football are keeping Spartak from confronting his former mentor.
Winning the country’s Cup for Spartak would help soften the impression of a failure in the championship, and the team understood this – the score of the match with Dynamo was already opened in the 10th minute of the game. Oleksandr Sobolev shot the ball to the close corner of the goal with a shot from outside the penalty area, but first the offside position was corrected and then the video assistant referee system (VAR) intervened for the first time in the match. The goal was confirmed, and the striker celebrated his goal in a very touching way – under his shirt was a T-shirt with the inscription “Mom, it’s all for you”. Sobolev could not hold back his tears, he dedicated the goal to his mother, who passed away in the summer of 2020. After the match, it was the striker who was recognized as the best player of this fight.
Dinamo recovered only ten minutes after the start of the second half. The team failed to develop an attack in the middle, but Arsen Zakharyan took advantage of the ball bouncing off the penalty line and took his shot. Playing in Spartak’s last game, Samuel Gigot tried to block the shot, but the ball flew into Alexander Maksimenko’s goal with a rebound from his foot. Spartak put a lot of pressure in the second half of the game and that pressure paid off.
In the 72nd minute, the red and whites made a quick counterattack, which resulted in Quincy Promes entering the penalty area, defeating Igor Leshchuk and scoring the winning goal.
Already in the pause of the match, Dynamo had a chance to equalize and keep fighting. Ruslan Litvinov hit Roman Evgeniev in the face with his elbow in the penalty area. The episode was analyzed for a long time – first the judges in VAR, and then the head referee Kirill Levnikov went to watch the replay, then at 90 + 5 minutes gave Maksimenko a penalty. Daniil Fomin approached the “point”, but the football player could not cope with his nerves – the ball flew over the goal, and the final whistle sounded almost instantly.
Spartak won the first trophy since 2017 and the first Russian Cup since 2002/03 season. The match ended with a beautiful performance – a crowded stadium sang “Do You Know”, the club’s unofficial anthem, along with singer MakSim and red-and-white football players.
Former Spartak and Dynamo midfielder Yuri Kovtun noted in a comment to socialbites.ca that passions were in full swing until the last minute in the match, and the missed penalty was an incredible result for such a duel. Separately, he noted that the generation of the former midfielder Luzhniki was the Spartak stadium, where he won many victories.
“There is an understanding that I play for both Spartak and Dynamo. With Spartak I won the Cup and three titles, with Dynamo I won the Cup. There was no keen sympathy for one of the teams, but someone had to win.
Dynamo failed at the end of the season – there are moments when the last step is missing. There was an unsuccessful match for Silver, now the Cup final. It’s a sport, I have no right to blame anyone here.
Can the season be considered a success for Dynamo despite the unsuccessful ending? You know, everyone has their own opinion. Management can adhere to one position, fans – another. Yes, they had a real chance to be the champion and take the Cup, they craved it. I will not say that there are question marks about the work of the coaches, the championship has been positive for them. Presumably, the leadership will make some decisions, but then they will think about new tasks. After such a good season, we need to keep going,” admitted Kovtun.
Dmitry Bulykin, who played for Dynamo throughout his career, congratulated Spartak on the trophy on the centenary of the club, and also noted that the season went well for blue and white, despite the opportunity to compete in the championship. compete and win the trophy.
“Great impressions – atmosphere, stadium and intrigue. Unfortunately, Dynamo failed to spot the moment from the penalty spot. And so, it became a holiday for fans. Dynamo wasn’t good enough to finish the season in the title race, silver or Cup. You can congratulate Spartak: they took the trophy on the club’s centennial year.
Will it be difficult for Fomin after the missed penalty? I repeat very often that any statistic is interrupted at some point. Of course, it’s a shame when something like this happens in such matches, but it happens – you need to go through it, move forward and prepare for next season.” Bulykin shared his impressions with socialbites.ca.
Denis Boyarintsev, a former player of the Russian national team, who had reached a significant turning point in his coaching career the day before and brought the Rodina football club to the Olympus – National Football League, admitted in a comment to socialbites.ca, in his opinion, I did not improve much from the Spartak training camp , but he was more organized and consistent in this match, he deservedly won, even if he didn’t show fascinating football. Boyarintsev drew attention to the problems in the defense of Dynamo, which today not only led to conceded goals, but also prevented the team from imposing a fight for the RPL title on Zenit.
“We won the cup – great! We won with a good game – we were stronger than Dynamo. It is always harder to build – in the first minutes both teams destroyed their offensive attempts. But Spartak was luckier, they made a good attack – Misha Ignatov opened well between the lines , Sobolev took an excellent position among the players.
They worked great, they worked fast, they scored the first goal – and it made sense, Spartak had a slight advantage. And Dynamo was never successful in the attack.
Dynamo objectively won the start of the second half, they began to take the initiative. However, he followed up with a great quick response attack at decent speeds and Promes did a great job with the keeper, of course. In the end, the penalty was optional, but the success was on the Spartak side – they got the trophy they deserved, ”the statement said.
In his career, Valery Gladilin played for Spartak as a player, and also took part in the team as a coach. He noted that the game was not as easy as expected, it was not fun, but the players struggled a lot against each other.
“The teams knew each other and the coaches learned about the behavior of the opponents and the players. At the forefront were dedication, maximum composure and better use of their moments. The match can’t be said to be brilliant but it was a real cup game with a huge audience – it’s a shame that so many fans gathered for the Cup final. it wasn’t long ago.
Vanoli did not have time to deliver such games to Spartak. Luck smiled at the last moment – what happens next if the Dynamo player changes the penalty?
Then there would be an 11-foot array. But luck was on Spartak’s side. There were brilliant matches throughout the season, there were disastrous matches. It is very difficult to say in which direction Spartak is moving. And what will happen next is hard to predict. While “Spartak” won because of emotions and luck, but there is no set game – so he took tenth place in the championship. But still Spartak fans deserved victory in the Cup. The players thanked them on the 100th anniversary of the club, ”the red-and-white veteran concluded in a comment to socialbites.ca.