SKA Khabarovsk vs Lokomotiv Moscow Prediction, Preview & Lineups
SKA Khabarovsk vs Lokomotiv Moscow prediction before their clash at the “Lenin Stadium” in Khabarovsk. The game is part from the Russian Premier League round 18 schedule and is set take place on Monday evening (local time), 27 November 2017. However, this will be Monday morning Central/Western European time since Khabarovsk is located in the Russian Far East, on over 6000 kms (by airplane) from Moscow. Find out more in our detailed match preview, prediction and free betting tips.
H2H History: SKA Khabarovsk vs Lokomotiv Moscow
SKA Khabarovsk marks its Russian Premier League debut season but besides their match in early-August, the Khabarovsk outfit and Lokomotiv Moscow have also met in the 2009-10 Russian Cup 1/16 finals. This is an encounter that keeps some great memories for SKA Khabarovsk who were hosts and have won 2:1 on 15 July 2009.
In August 2017, “The Red-Greens” took revenge for the loss eight years ago when Aleksey Miranchuk scored the only goal in the final part of their Moscow duel.
Russian Premier League: SKA Khabarovsk vs Lokomotiv Moscow 27.11.2017
After a crucial victory over FC Copenhagen in the midweek UEFA Europa League round, Lokomotiv Moscow travels far east with an only purpose to maintain its top position in the Russian Premier League. Yuri Semin’s men are doing well on all fronts, although they have already been knocked out from the ongoing Russian Cup campaign, whose previous edition they had won only a few months ago. Nevertheless, they have enough commitments in the Europa League as well as in the Premier League, where Lokomotiv aims to win the domestic league for the first time since 2004 and towards European breakthrough.
SKA Khabarovsk found themselves on the other pole but that’s not unexpected as the club enjoys its very first season in the top tier of either Russian or Soviet football system. Former long-standing player of the club, who also had a short spell in Lokomotiv’s city rivals – CSKA, Aleksey Poddubskiy was SKA Khabarovsk’s youth team coach in the period 2016-2017 before being promoted initially as a caretaker, later on as a head coach in spring of 2017. The Khabarovsk club finished fourth in the 2016–17 Russian National Football League (second division) regular season, which awarded them a golden opportunity to take part in the relegation play-offs, where Aleksey Poddubskiy’s men eliminated FC Orenburg after a two-legged matchup.
Now, couple of months later, SKA Khabarovsk have won 12 points in 17 games and are looking for a way out of the relegation zone. Unfortunately, even the best possible scenario here (a win) won’t climb them in the standings since Dynamo Moscow and Anzhi, who are 14th and 15th respectively, are both having four-points lead but the good news are they have already lost their round 18 fixtures, so they can’t increase the distance.
SKA Khabarovsk vs Lokomotiv Moscow Preview: Squads and Missing Players
Lokomotiv showed enough composure to beat FC Copenhagen on Thursday night and the Moscow “Railroaders” are very close to reach the Europa League knockout phase, unless they don’t lose to Zlin, who are already eliminated, and Copenhagen wins against Sheriff in the meantime.
That was a second successive win for Lokomotiv Moscow who had another long journey to Kaspiysk (almost 2000 kms) last weekend, where Aleksey Miranchuk scored his seventh league goal against Anzhi to brought the whole set of points in Moscow. A few days later Peruvian striker Jefferson Farfan was under the spotlights as he netted a brace against the Danish champion and was chosen for the UEFA Europa League‘s Player of the Week.
Yuri Semin will most likely stick to the same 4-2-3-1 formation used in the midweek but he may reintroduce Serbian defender Nemanja Pejcinovic back in the starting lineup. He was injured but should be fully recovered to play from the outset in Khabarovsk, while his centre-back partner Vedran Corluka still recovers from a long-term injury. Other first-team players who are either injured or still recovering are – goalkeeper Guilherme, wing-back Macej Rybus and striker Ari. Ukrainian Taras Mykhalyk suffered an injury in the match against FC Copenhagen and is a doubt, but as we mentioned Pejcinovic is fully fit so he is a first-choice anyway.
SKA are going through a negative run of results after losing their last three Premier League games against FC Krasnodar (4:1), Arsenal Tula (1:2), CSKA Moscow (2:4). Moreover, they have conceded 10 goals in these three rounds and need to strengthen their defensive line when another title contender arrives in town.
Aleksey Poddubskiy will probably add on his defensive formation and he may start with five defenders, instead of four. It’s something similar to a 3-4-2-1 but both wing-backs Giorgi Navalovski and Konstantin Savichev will have bigger defensive responsibilites.
Midfielder Aleksey Druzin is the only injured player in the home side but his absence is not something new as he is being treated for a persistent leg injury.
SKA Khabarovsk vs Lokomotiv Moscow Prediction and Betting Tips
Lokomotiv will be extremely inspired after the positive results in the past few weeks, including a massive 0:3 success in Saint Petersburg from end of October. However, “The Red-Greens” must deal with all consequences of the long and exhausting journey, especially one of their star names Jefferson Farfan, who travelled to some other away destinations like his homeland Peru and even New Zealand, to take part in the FIFA World Cup inter-confederation play-offs.
Yuri Semin’s men are surely favourites to win here but they are not the type of a team that will push for a high-scoring result, not after all busy weeks and before the last three competitive matches they have to play in rest of 2017.
We expect more tightened defensive look of SKA Khabarovsk as they definitely hope to benefit from the restful 8 days and lack of any traveling after losing to CSKA Moscow. Furthermore, we shouldn’t underestimate the heavy weather conditions in Khabarovsk where temperatures around -25 were usual in the days before the match, while on match day they will hit “only -13/14”. In fact, the Russian Football Union has refused a request made by Lokomotiv to change the match venue to Sochi, which is a city known to have more favorable climate.
Both teams have been involved in some “overs” (4 of their last 5 matches have ended with Over 2.5 Goals) for the past weeks and maybe it’s time for a low-scoring affair at the stadium in Khabarovsk. Our betting prediction goes on the goal scoring markets and we recommend “Under 2 Goals”. This means you will have your money back if there are exactly two goals scored.
Possible Lineups of SKA Khabarovsk and Lokomotiv Moscow
Venue: “Lenin Stadium”, Khabarovsk.
Referee: Roman Galimov.
SKA Khabarovsk: Aleksandr Dovbnya – Konstantin Savichev, Aleksandr Putsko, Aleksandr Dimidko, Ismail Ediyev, Giorgi Navalovski – Alejandro Barbaro, Denys Dedechko, Pavel Karasev, Vladislav Nikiforov – Miroslav Markovic. (5-4-1)
Lokomotiv Moscow: Anton Kochenkov – Vladislav Ignatjev, Nemanja Pejcinovic, Solomon Kvirkvelia, Vitali Denisov – Igor Denisov, Aleksandr Kolomeytsev – Anton Miranchuk, Aleksey Miranchuk, Manuel Fernandes – Jefferson Farfan. (4-2-3-1)