Opening match of the 32nd round of Meistriliiga in Tartu as the home team was hosting the struggling team of Kalev. As it became tradition for Tammeka’s home games, the support from the crowd was sufficient (official number 407 spectators), the atmosphere was on a very high level and everything was ready for the home team to add three points to their tally. But had Zamogilnõi prepared anything to spoil their mood? Let’s see how it all went.
Coach Indrek Koser didn’t have many troubles with the squad so he decided to field the following starting XI for this match. On the goal as usual was Karli Kütt, Tutk and Tenno were deployed in central defense, Jürgen Lorenz for this game was used on the left full-back position and Hindrek Ojamaa on his standard right full-back. Tekko and Paju were operating in the center of the park, Tauts and Suurpere on the flanks, and as predicted, Tiirik operated behind Martin Hurt in attack.
Sergei Zamogilnõi made few changes in his team in an attempt to end the losing streak. On the goal was Artem Levizi, Heintare and Valge were used in central defense, while Hausenberg and Gavrilov were deployed on the left and right full-back positions, respectively. Armean and Butlers were given the task to stop Tammeka’s attacks in central midfield, Nikita Koger took on the left flank, Karpov the right and Nikita Brõlin played behind Lasha Omanidze in attack.
The match started as expected, with a mild initiative by the home team as they were trying to record their 6th win of the season. Led by the in-form winger Rasmus Tauts they managed to create few early chances in front of Levizi’s goal, but none dangerous enough to bring them the lead. In the 9th minute a huge mess in front of Kalev’s goal, but the defensive line managed to clear the danger. As the time was passing by Kalev slowly established balance in midfield, however most of their attacks were broken 30 meters from Kütt’s goal. In the 34th minute the away team got their first more serious chance of the match, but Kütt easily saved Karpov’s effort. In the next attack Suurpere nicely received a ball on the right wing, passed Hausenberg and without any trouble beat Levizi for an erruption of applause on the stands and 1-0 for the home team. That goal kind of demoralized the away team as they stopped playing for a moment, allowing Tammeka to create few more chances. In the 39th minute Suurpere again tried, but this time his effort went wide. In the 41st minute Levizi was beaten again, but Tiirik’s goal was waived off by the referee because of hand ball. In the last minute of the first half yet another chance for Suurpere, but excellent save from Levizi as he promoted himself in a saviour for his team and main reason that they went on break with only one goal deficit.
Coach Indrek Koser could definitely be satisfied with what he saw from his team as Suurpere, Tauts and Tiirik very wisely used the space created by Hurt in the final third of the pitch and at the same time their solid defense didn’t allow Kalev to seriously threaten Kütt. Zamogilnõi as usually had a lot to tell his players if they were about to avoid another defeat.
The second half started in a similar fashion with the home team establishing control in midfield but without any shots towards Levizi’s goal. As time was passing by they were getting more tired and were allowing more playing space to Kalev’s players. Zamogilnõi’s players saw a chance to hurt the home team and in the 65th minute Nikita Koger tried his luck from distance just to see Kütt punch the ball in corner. In the 67th minute, however, Tammeka’s young goalkeeper wasn’t so lucky as Lasha Omanidze managed to tap in the ball that he previously saved after Koger’s header. 1-1 and silence on the stands. In the 70th minute Kalev was very close to taking over the lead, but the attempt from Karpov was saved from the line. From that moment on the home team pressed harder in Kalev’s half and in the 76th minute they almost scored, but luckily for Levizi, the ball went just wide. Three minutes later excellent combination down the right flank between Valtna and Ojamaa. The latter passed the ball in the box towards Tiirik who beat Levizi for second time to bring the home team the lead. In the final 10 minutes of the game Kalev tried to equalize again with few attempts from distance, but Kütt was careful and did not allow surprise.
Big win for Tammeka to boost their morale in the final few matches in their chase for that 7th position. As for Kalev, it seems like this is the end of all their hopes for play-offs to stay in Premium Liiga next season