Partizani vs Krasnodar – Europa League Preview

Partizani vs Krasnodar – Europa League Preview

Thursday’s Europa League second leg playoff match Partizani vs Krasnodar will be, more or less, a friendly match rather than a truely competitive fixture. The Russians made no mistakes in the first leg, and handily beat the Albanian’s by a score line of 4-0.

This means that Krasnodar, who are currently fourth in the Russian Football Premier League will most likely use the game to lick the wounds, which they sustained at the hands of Spartak Moscow on Sunday, when the club from the Russian capital beat Krasnodar 2-0.

It will be interesting, therefore, to see how Krasnodar’s manager Oleg Kononov approaches the match on Thursday in Tirana, Albania’s capital. Don’t be surprised if Kononov rests several players who would normally find themselves in the starting eleven.

Players such as striker Fedor Smolov, who once again leads the scoring race in the RFPL, midfielders Charles Kaboré, Mauricio Pereyra, and Yuri Gazinsky, as well as defender Andreas Granqvist could be rested—although with Ragnar Sigurdsson moving to Fulham on Wednesday Granqvist could play after all..

In their place: Marat Izmailov could make his second appearance for the squad. Also, it is likely that Odil Akhmetov will return to the squad. Up front, Ari could play central striker, and the Colombian, Ricardo Laborde, could be moved to the right forward position, in order to give Smolov a rest.

Meanwhile, Partizani Tirana coach, Adolfo Sormani, might use the match as a test game himself, as the Albanian Kategoria Sueriore has not kicked off yet. Hence, Sormani could use the Europa League match as an exercise to find the perfect starting eleven before the domestic season kicks off, for Partizani wants to challenge Albania’s biggest club KF Skënderbeu for the league title this season.

Hence, even with the tie all finished and completed, it will be still interesting to see what kind of tactical lessons the two coaches will be able to draw from what, more or less, has become a competitive friendly match.

Possible Line-ups


Formation: 4-1-4-1

Hoxha – Atanda, Arapi, Krasniqi, Ibrahimi – Ramadani – Torassa, Vila, Trashi, Fili – Ekuban

Manager: Adolfo Sormani


Formation: 4-3-3

Kritsyuk – Petrov, Martynovich, Strandberg, Jedrzejczyk – Akhmedov, Izmailov, Torbinski – Pereyra, Ari, Laborde

Manager: Oleg Kononov

By Manuel Veth –