Focus on SILLAMÄE KALEV
Don't tell Ratnikov that everything is going well and according to the plans. His words after the game in Paide were rather those of someone who one 2-1 by turning a game on his head than those of 3-0 win happy face. He knows that enthusiasm could boost but could also kill.
In fact, the risk for Sillamäe is to believe they have achieved something. Far from that considering that the season will be very long, the 'longshoremen' are not use to be tableleaders and the European campaign will hit in the middle of the season.
Under this point of view the game against Nõmme Kalju is another exam for the Ratnikov band. Last season the Eastern side managed to hold Kalju three times on a draw (two 1-1 and one 0-0) until they had to surrender in Tallinn 1-0 in September.
The almost perfect balance in the head-to-head suggests that the two clubs will square up in a tense game where each of them will try to make as few mistakes as possible in the same fashion of the Tallinn Derbies witnessed in the past weeks.
Sillamäe squad is in perfect health for Saturday.
With a bit of rotation, 'Ratka' has spared his son Daniil and former Estonian international Sidorenkov (24 caps with the 'sinisärgid').
Obviously the Japanese Maehara will want to show his former club how wrong they were in letting him go, however Ratnikov will send Volodin on the right flank and give a start to Sidorenkov on the left in the typical defence line with Dudarev and Baguźis.
Tjapkin and Paponov will be the consolidated midfield duo in front of the defence and behind the witty line Kabaev-Ratnikov-Maśitsev. The latter might leave his place to Kvasov as the Ukrainian has perfectly integrated into the XI (5 goals scored) and will give something to think about to the 54-year-old coach.
Sillamäe have the huge chance to put 6 points between them and Kalju, not a bad asset for the progress of the season.
Previous reports on RdS
FC Levadia vs. Sillamäe
Focus on KALJU
Igor Prins was quite clear in the post-match interview last Saturday when Kalju managed to overcome Kalev with a mere 2-1 win: if we play the same way, Sillmäe will beat us up.
The alarm has not been sounded for nothing.
Kalju will actually risk a lot if they will not put on the pitch the same attitude seen in the big derbies with Levadia and Flora. It was probably a low considering the opponent was not deemed as challenging as in the previous weeks.
Additionally, Prins fielded a XI with a different formation (4-4-1-1) and with a bit of rotation on the left flank. In Sillamäe he should return to 4-2-3-1 giving back a place to Allan Kimbaloula on the left flank and to Ken Kallaste on the full-back position. No man is cautioned therefore defence and midfield shall not spare the leg this time with Reintam and Bärengrub ready to stop Zahovaiko fuelled by Ratnikov Jr.
Unless injuries will come at the very last moment, it should be the usual XI with Wakui behind Neemelo dropping back to help the Vunk-Reginald duo.
Damiano Quintieri is still out, however the date of his return shall be closer as we get close to the end of the month. Andre Järva is still dealing with his post-surgical (nose).
Motivation should be very high considering that Sillamäe are just three points away from Kalju. It's a chance to close the gap.
SILLAMÄE VS. KALJU HEAD TO HEAD
Clashes in Premium Liiga: 24
Sillamäe's wins: 7
Kalju’s wins: 8
Goals scored by Sillamäe: 29
Goals scored by Kalju: 37
Most prolific Premium Liiga scorer(s) in Sillamäe's rows: Vjatseslav Zahovaiko (CF) 175 goals
Most prolific Premium Liiga scorer(s) in Kalju's rows: Tarmo Neemlo (CF) 151 goals
More odds about this game here by
THE REFEREES SQUAD
(statistics courtesy of Heigo Niilop)
The referee designated for this game is Eiko Saar.
In Premium Liiga he has directed 184 games showing 565 yellows (3,07 per game), 20 red cards for a second booking and 22 straight red cards (0,1 per game).
He has whistled 5 clashes between the two clubs already:
13.09.2008 Kalju – Sillamäe 2-2
30.05.2009 Sillamäe - Kalju 2-0
09.04.2011 Kalju – Sillamäe 1-2
10.04.2012 Sillamäe – Kalju 0-2
26.08.2013 Sillamäe – Kalju 1-1
He showed 23 yellow cards in the previous ones (13 times to Kalju players and 10 times to Sillamäe).
No sending off and two penalties assigned in his overall balance of the clash.
When comes to the current season, Saar has already whistled a Sillamäe game twice this year (away to Levadia and home to Trans) with the Easterners drawing in both situations (2-2 and 1-1). In the game against Narva, he assigned a penalty to the visitors for a last-man foul that cost Baguźis a red card and Sillamäe the three points. The foul was quite evident as Baguźis pulled Narva man down.
It is first game for Kalju to have Saar as a referee. Last year they had it 4 times (2 wins, 1 draw - in Sillamäe - and 1 loss the balance). However the memories are not very good when reminding the only loss under his direction. In fact, they lost to Levadia thanks to a handball by Rimo Hunt overlooked by the Estonian international referee.
On a curiosity note, Eiko Saar was the referee in Cardiff when, on the 5th of March, Gareth Bale scored a goal against Iceland which was quite similar to the one he scored in the 'Copa del Rey' final on Wednesday night. ''It's hard to keep up the pace with him'' said the 32-years-old referee to Õhtuleht.ee ''he overuns everyone, even refs''.
The other officials will be Silver Kõiv and Neeme Neemlaid as first and second assistants.
Box assistants will be Toomas Nõmmiste and Mart Martin. Fourth official Heigo Paglant.
Flanks, flanks, flanks.
This is where the game will develop and try to break through from each side. Actually it shall be a great display to see from both sides with Kimbaloula coming from Kalju left side, and Maśitchev (or Kvasov) doing it on Sillamäe's one. Without forgetting Kabaev on the right for Sillamäe and Toomet on Kalju's one. The opposing flank forces will require a lot of work from each side's full-backs and will demand midfielders a lot of double teaming to close space and win the ball back. As a natural consequence, this will open space in the middle for Wakui and Ratnikov to roam, who will be more keen to use it? Neemelo and Zahovaiko are expected with a lot of work, who will resist longer? Kirss and Kvasov might be the alternatives on the run.
Wakui is a 'usual suspect' in this game as he has already scored 7 goals against Sillamäe, will he manage to put his 8th past Starodubtsev?
INFO ABOUT THE GAME
The game will be held at Sillamäe Kalev Stadium (16:00 EEST, 19th of April) and can also be followed via ETV streaming here
Entrance 2€. If you carry a Sillamäe Kalev scarf, you pay half a price.
Up to 16 years old of age, entrance is for free.
Senior citizens (from 60-year-old) also get in without paying.
No Facebook event available.