Rubin Kazan vs Inter

November 21, 2012
By: John Hansen

Both sides are already through to the next stage, but the clash at Municipal Stadium in Kazan is likely to decide the winner of the group. With Inter arriving in Russia without a number of first team regulars, the hosts appear to be slight favourites for the win, especially as they are on top of their game at the moment.

Six victories on the bounce

Rubin Kazan have become regular in European competitions and they have long ago showed they are not there only to make the numbers. Led by master tactician Kurban Berdyev, the Russian giants have proved to be a tough nut to crack even for some of Europe’s top sides. The team have been pretty impressive this season, with the arrivals of Salomon Rondon, Pablo Orbaiz and Ivan Marcano seriously improving the quality of the side. As a result, Rubin climbed to fourth in the league thanks to the four-match winning run, while ensuring their place in Europa League knockout stages with 10 points from 4 games. Being on a six-match winning run at the moment and having already held Inter to 2-2 draw in Milan, Rubin look a good bet to see off the weakened Neroazzurri and secure the first place in the overall standings.

Salomon Rondon returns to the side, while Oleg Kuzmin is back from domestic suspension.

Key players rested

Inter have made it clear from the very start of their Europa League campaign that they will use the competition as an opportunity to give some playing time to fringe players, but, having been placed in such an easy group, the Neroazzurri, nonetheless, managed to pick up 10 points from 4 games. However, having watched both games against weak Partizan, I can tell you that the Italian giants were pretty fortunate to win those matches, as it was evident most of their players were just looking to get the job done without wasting too much energy in the process. Having already secured their place in the next phase and facing very good Rubin side in adverse weather conditions, we can expect the visitors to spend more time trying to escape injury than giving their best to win the game. It is also important to note that Andrea Stramaccioni has left most of his starters in Italy.

Samir Handanovic, Yuto Nagatomo, Walter Samuel, Esteban Cambiasso, Wesley Sneijder, Ricky Alvarez, Fredy Guarin, Gabi Mudingayi, Diego Milito and Antonio Cassano all miss out.


Considering that Rubin are on top of their game at the moment and that they should have much bigger motivation than their opposition, home win looks a banker here. Inter arrive in Kazan with what is a second string squad and they will struggle to score a goal let alone escape defeat in Russia.

Top pick: Home win   2.05 (21/20) @ Stan James

Alternative pick 1: Under 2.5 goals   1.83 (5/6) @ BetVictor

Alternative pick 2: Inter not to score   2.85 (37/20) @ Sportingbet

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