"Lazio" and "Club Brugge" Zenit is able to beat "

- Champion of Russia “Zenith” got into rivals in the group stage of the Champions League “Borussia Dortmund”, “Lazio” and “Brugge”.

Can we say that Petersburgers were lucky again with the lot?

- In comparison with Lokomotiv and Krasnodar - yes.

But at the group stage of the Champions League, there are no weak rivals.

Borussia stands out in this quartet, but Zenit is able to beat Lazio and Brugge.

And Dortmund can compete.

This was shown in 2014, when we met with Borussia under the leadership of Jurgen Klopp in the 1/8 finals of the Champions League.

As a result, they lost at home (2: 4), but won on the road (2: 1) thanks to a brilliant goal from the Hulk.

Yes, now the yellow-blacks include such players as Axel Witsel, Erling Holland, Torgan Hazard, but Zenit can fight the German team.

The question is whether the Dortmund people will provide such an opportunity.

- The current team coach Lucien Favre has a fairly young lineup.

Could this be a problem for him?

- Certainly.

But the level of resistance in the German championship is much higher than in the RPL.

The speeds there are also completely different.

Zenit must be ready for this.

In addition, there are experienced players in Borussia, for example Witsel.

I think Axel will be well received in St. Petersburg.

With his game, he left an excellent memory of himself among the fans.

- Last season, Lazio striker Ciro Immobile scored 36 goals in Serie A, ahead of even Cristiano Ronaldo, and won the Golden Boot as the most productive player in the European national championships.

How to contain such a scorer?

- It will certainly not be easy.

Again, you need to understand that matches in Serie A are held at much higher speeds than RPL meetings.

In Italy, every fight comes literally from the knife.

And Immobile scored 36 there!

First of all, Zenit really has to puzzle over how to turn Chiro out of the game, how not to let him scatter and score.

- In your opinion, Zenit has strengthened enough on the eve of the Champions League?

One gets the impression that Sergei Semak cannot boast of a long bench.

- I think any coach dreams of having as many great players as possible in his team.

As for Zenit, in my opinion, there is no need to wait for big changes in the roster.

It remains to count on those people who are now gathered in the team.

But, I think, Petersburgers are in good shape, although they made a few mistakes in the RPL.

And it's good that this happened even before the start in the Champions League.

- In your opinion, Zenit will make it to the playoffs of the main European Cup?

- Yes.

From second place in the group.

“Nobody expects results from Krasnodar.

The team's hands will be untied "

- Speaking about Zenit, you said that he was lucky with the draw, unlike the other two Russian teams.

Do you think that Krasnodar, which will face Chelsea, Sevilla and Renn, is not lucky?

- The teams were in different baskets, and the teams that got into the third or fourth, by default, come across stronger rivals.

If Krasnodar can fight Renn, then Chelsea and Sevilla are teams of a higher level.

It is clear that Londoners, all other things being equal, stand out against the general background of this quartet.

We often see Sevilla in the Europa League, but I think they will look decent in the Champions League too.

However, it should be noted that the English and Spanish teams, like Krasnodar, demonstrate open football, so the matches between them can turn out to be truly spectacular.

Against this background, Murad Musaev's wards are able to prove themselves.

- Can we say that Krasnodar will play in the Champions League even easier than in the RPL, where opponents often close on the defensive?

- It will be easier for the southerners also because no one expects a result from them, unlike Zenit.

They are still debutants, and they got the group stronger than the Petersburgers.

If they fail, the bulls will have one weighty excuse - lack of experience.

But it is for this reason that the hands of Musaev's charges are untied.

Therefore, Krasnodar may well surprise its rivals with the kind of football it demonstrates in the RPL when played on a collision course.

- You said that Sevilla is superior in class than Krasnodar.

At the same time, "Spartak" only three years ago smashed this team in Moscow.

- Sevilla plays in the Spanish Championship, and that says it all.

Primera is one of the strongest, if not the strongest national world championship.

The current winner of the Europa League in the domestic arena regularly confronts strong opponents, and therefore will be in better shape.

But on the eve of important matches of the championship, the grandees can sometimes vary the composition in European competitions.

This can also benefit Krasnodar.


UEFA allowed the admission of 30% of the spectators of the stadium capacity to the European Cup matches.

Can this help Krasnodar get out of the group, or will everything in the Champions League be decided exclusively on the pitch?

- Of course, a full stadium gives a different level of support, but we need to rejoice at this decision of UEFA.

It is much easier for football players to enter the field when there is at least a certain number of spectators in the stands than when they are empty.

The lack of fans gives any match a friendly atmosphere, even though we have begun to get used to it.

- Do you get the feeling that Krasnodar, on the eve of its debut at the Champions League group stage, has an even more serious personnel profile than Zenit?

- If we talk in general about the composition of the teams, the Petersburgers are still stronger.

The assessment of the benches will be subjective in any case.

But both Musaev and Semak, with such a busy schedule of games, will try to somehow vary the composition.

The sight will be placed at the Champions League, but in no case should we forget about the RPL.

- What result can Krasnodar count on in the Champions League?

- I will root for the bulls, but it will be very difficult for them.

I think the team will take third place.

I suppose that the southerners will be close to reaching the playoffs and only a little behind Sevilla.

But maybe they'll get lucky.

And without a share of luck to achieve success in the Champions League is unrealistic.

Lokomotiv is able to fight Atletico in Cherkizovo "

- Lokomotiv has once again found itself practically in the “group of death”, having gotten into rivals Bayern Munich and Atlético.

Wasn't it easier for the railroad workers to play in the Europa League?

- Actually, with such a draw, the red-green has nothing to do but fight for the third place and get into the LE.



) But the Champions League group stage does not start with a similar mood.

Here you can repeat the same message that was previously said about Krasnodar: Lokomotiv is an obvious outsider, from whom nothing is expected, and it will be easier for railroad workers.

At the same time, let's not forget that Loko has a serious experience of playing in the Champions League, even if several leading performers left the team.

And each of the players will want to prove themselves in order to get the opportunity to go abroad.

- In your opinion, the railroad workers can take points away from Bayern Munich and Atlético?

- I doubt that Marko Nikolic's charges will have any chance in the matches against Munich.

But Lokomotiv is able to fight Madrid in Cherkizovo.

Again, the rivals will undoubtedly underestimate the railroad workers and think more about internal affairs.

Still, in order to compete in the Champions League every year and receive serious money for it, it is necessary to achieve results in the national championships.

- Will Loko's experience with this team help in the matches against Atlético?

- In this case, we can say that Zenit knows Borussia perfectly well in 2014, and Witsel played for our team in general.

Everything here is very arbitrary.

Time passes, and teams change, although some tactical developments remain.

- Don't you think that at the moment the railroad workers are simply not ready to play in the Champions League due to the departure of Alexei Miranchuk and the injuries of the leaders.

- I agree with you.

Lokomotiv will have a harder time than the rest of the Russian teams, not only because of the unsuccessful lot, but also because of the ongoing restructuring.

After the departure of Yuri Semin, the railroad workers no longer look like a balanced team.

The team is extremely unstable.

- Will Lokomotiv be able to climb at least to the third line in the group?

- With all due respect, I'm afraid Loko will take only fourth place.

I think the railroad workers will have a hard time in the confrontation with Salzburg.

This is a very good attacking team.

Otherwise, I'll be rooting for all Russian clubs, and I wish everyone good luck.

If they get in good shape by the start of the Champions League group stage, they will have a chance to perform with dignity.