March 26 2011

Russia settle with Armenia

Saturday 26 March 2011
Despite dominating most of the game, UEFA EURO 2012 Group B qualifying
leaders Russia had to settle for a 0-0 draw against Armenia today.

That meant they held onto their lead with ten points from five
matches, but have left the Republic of Ireland the chance to draw
level with them should they defeat Macedonia later today.

Armenia, who are now in second place with eight points, started in a
lively fashion, pinning Russia back in an attempt to expose their
defensive frailties. But the visitors held firm, stifling Armenia's
attacks and all the while looking for the chance to launch

Midway into the first half Russia added power and precision to their
attacks and created an impressive set of chances including nine
corners. The guests made Armenia's goalkeeper Roman Berezovsky the
most overworked player on the pitch at Yerevan Republican stadium, but
they failed to break the deadlock before the break.

Six minutes after the interval the hosts also created a clear
opportunity for an opener, but striker Yura Movsisyan failed to find
the net from seven metres out with the goal at his mercy. Russia
replied with another series of attacks, but once again they failed to
capitalise on their goal-scoring opportunities.

Russian skipper Andrei Arshavin, who looked a pale shadow of his
normal self, also had a chance to score in the 79th minute, but his
shot from the edge of Armenia's box went just inches wide off the
right-hand post.

From: A. Papazian