previous arrow
next arrow

Battle in front of empty stands

In the sixth round, Gazprom-Yugra will play with its direct rival for getting into the playoffs - Ufa Ural. It's still a long way to the end of the regular season, but also the people of Surgut, and Ufa residents have traditionally been fighting for the same positions in recent years. And if so, then the match, as they say, will be for six points, since it is important for us not only to replenish our piggy bank, but also deprive competitors of the same opportunity. In the "Ural" probably think the same, therefore, we are waiting for a combat joint at the "Premier Arena"!

Unfortunately, it will pass without spectators - these are the antique rules, returned to our lives.

After the victory over "Fakel" our guys will go to the site in high spirits. "Ural", also chalked up one win in five matches so far, will be a little more sad: behind three defeats in a row, from "Yenisei", "Fakela" and "Dynamo-LO", and from Krasnoyarsk and Novy Urengoy - in five sets. But also revanchist sentiments from this, presumably, will be very high in the camp of our guests.

The current composition of the "Ural" gathered under the closed Superleague, so the team was able to strengthen only on the flag, by signing the honored veteran Alexander Gutsalyuk, who started his career in big volleyball in Surgut, and strong French spiker Nicolas Marechal, having experience playing in Russia for "Enisey". If not for the last acquisition, then the new head coach of Ufa, Igor Shulepov (former captain of the Surgut team!) the task would be very difficult, because in the match with "Fakel" club leader Yegor Feoktistov was injured.

The selection of a replacement for Yegor has not yet brought a satisfactory result., and this, perhaps, the main current weakness of our opponent. But - again - not a fact, that it will manifest itself in Surgut. Everything else is pretty solid: a pair of solid diagonal ones - Evgeny Rybakov and Maxim Shemyatikhin, played well last season at Neftyanik. In the center, Gutsalyuk is helped by "two towers" - Kirill Piun and Ivan Demakov, Novosibirsk pupil Roman Zhos moved to Ural from Yenisei.

The formula "there are no weak teams in the Super League" works without exceptions, but in this case, we can talk with peace of mind about at least an equal level of rivals. Especially considering Nikita Alekseev, who has reached design capacity, grown before our eyes (in terms of gaming confidence) Egor Yakutin, Ilya Kovalev, who is gaining shape, bringing variety to the tactical schemes of Ivan Lukyanenko. The beauty is, that literally everyone can shoot, even that, who did not go on tour at all before.

Gazprom-Ugra comes to life, getting out of the pressure of the first rounds, where we faced the leaders of the season. Let's spread our wings further, fight for every ball even with empty stands. And that, that in the game with "Ural" you will have to fight, no doubt.