Thursday, July 11, 2013

2013-14 Season Preview Part 2 - The Europa League Hopefuls

Kuban Krasnodar

Transfers In:

Nikita Bezlikhotnov
Djibril Cisse
Vladislav Ignatiev

Transfers Out:

Dele Adeleye
Abdulwaheed Afolabi
Aleksei Ionov
Vladislav Kulik
Igor Lolo
Daniel Niculae
Marcos Pizzelli
Nikolai Zhilyaev
Bauyrzhan Islamkhanov (loan)
Mikhail Komkov (loan)

In my opinion Kuban have greatly weakened their side with the departures of Ionov, Kulik and Lolo, and have not done enough to replace them. Djibril Cisse could be an improvement at striker, but weaknesses over the rest of the pitch will have dropped the overall quality of their squad and I predict them to drop 1 place in the table, although they could do worse if their competitors
Last Season - 5th
Prediction - 6th

Rubin Kazan

Transfers In:

Inal Getigezhev
Vladislav Kulik
Aleksandr Prudnikov

Transfers Out:

Aleksei Eremenko
Vitali Kaleshin
Pablo Orbaiz
Sergei Davydov (loan)
Alan Kasaev (loan)
Igor Portnyagin (loan)
Ivan Temnikov (loan)
Gokhan Tore (loan)
Maksim Zhestokov (loan

In my opinion, Rubin have significantly decreased in quality throughout the midfield by allowing Eremenko and Orbaiz to depart, while their depth on the wings has evaporated with the decision to loan out Gokhan Tore and Alan Kasaev. By failing to cover these departures, Rubin will sink ever further away from the title and I predict that they will miss out on Europa League qualification by finishing 8th.
Last Season - 6th
Prediction - 8th

Dynamo Moscow

Transfers In:

George Florescu
Alan Kasaev (loan)

Transfers Out:

Tomislav Dujmovic
Yuri Kirillov
Vladimir Kisenkov
Aleksandr Kokorin
Denis Kolodin
Evgenni Puzin
Ivan Solovyov
Vladimir Rykov (loan)

Dynamo have significantly weakened with the sale of Aleksandr Kokorin to Anzhi, but have managed to cover their departures far better than their direct rivals. The return of Andrei Voronin from a loan to Fortuna should do enough to cover weaknesses up front and Dynamo should be able to capitalise on the weaknesses of Rubin and Kuban to finish 5th.
Last Season - 7th
Prediction - 5th

Lokomotiv Moscow

Transfers In:

Taras Mykhalyk
Sergei Tkachyov

Transfers Out:

Anton Amelchenko
Denis Glushakov
Dmitri Loskov
Artur Sarkisov
Dmitri Sychev

The biggest move that Lokomotiv have made over the summer was the replacement of manager Slaven Bilic with Leonid Kuchuk. Bilic's tactics and team selections were baffling at times and he dragged Lokomotiv down to a 9th place finish when they were expected to be pushing for Champion's League places. As for players, Lokomotiv have slightly weakened by replacing Denis Glushakov with Taras Mykhalyk, however the improved management of Leonid Kuchuk should pull them to a 7th place finish.
Last Season - 9th
Prediction - 7th

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