March 21, 2023

The railwayman missed two goals in 48 seconds of the second half, and one more in the third. The brigades of most of the guests worked in vain. Perhaps the native walls of Arena 2000 will help Lokomotiv turn the series around.

Unfortunately, today the interests of hockey and football intersected. The second game of the series against Lokomotiv began at the CSKA Arena at 5:00 p.m. And at 7:30 p.m., the champion and leader of Zenit entered the VEB Arena field. Many fans of the army (and not only) wanted to get two in one – to visit both hockey and football, but were forced to sacrifice one of these pleasures.

It’s not immediately clear why it was impossible to move the core match of round 20 of the RPL from a freezing night to a day when the March sun is hot. However, this did not affect the attendance at the CSKA Arena. Like Friday, the stands were filled to the max.

Photo source: HC CSKA

The first half was the continuation of match number one. The railway did not give the champions respite, not an inch of free ice. They occupied the army area and after 3.5 minutes they opened the gates of Adam Reideborn. The goals were hit by a long-range shot from the blue line by striker Denis Alekseev, the puck from the shoulder of the young defender, the hosts Nikolai Makarov, fluttering into the net past the dejected Swedish keeper.

The hosts did not build anything memorable at the gates of Daniil Isaev. Except for the power pass down the right flank from captain Nikita Nesterov. But the goalkeeper easily coped with his throw from the “shovel”.

The army team did not keep up with the agile railway workers, pitting speed against power moves. Olympic runner-up Pavel Karnaukhov tested the strength of Yegor Korshkov’s head. Yaroslavets was saved by a helmet.

Photo source: HC CSKA

Having won the majority, the hosts almost got the second goal. His captain pardoned his former team, and now sports the letter “C” at Lokomotiv, Sergey Andronov. Finding himself with the puck under Reideborn’s nose, the Olympian took a break, but forgot to quit.

– We did not fully enter the game, we lost it, – the CSKA leader surprised at the first break with a revelation in an express interview on the KHL channel.

In the second half, the hosts often entered the penalty area, but the Mensheviks held on. And the railwaymen scored a goal in a 2-on-1 counter-attack, which was born after a mistake on the blue line by Darren Dietz. The defender did not close the zone, allowing Maxim Shalunov and his namesake Berezkin to escape towards the goal. The last one, who advanced two arshin steps this season, irresistibly threw from the brushes: 0:2.

Such a delay for CSKA is not a death sentence. Tested in the seventh game against Severstal (4:3). CSKA responded with a brace. The first goal without respite is a masterpiece. Yes, Berezkin did not take the puck out of the backcourt – this is a stain. But what a trade pass Maxim Sorkin, who missed the first game, gave the patch! And Grigorenko from the rally, standing with his back to the goal, sent the puck to the free Maxim Mamin, who did not miss.

While the guests were recovering, Dietz punished them for a strange jerk. The episode raised questions. In the patch, defender Rushan Rafikov took down Plotnikov. The army man fell and lay down. The referees were in no hurry to blow the whistle – it is their prerogative to stop the game in such situations or not. And Dietz shot on goal and finished off the puck that bounced off the Isaev net.

Lokomotiv head coach Igor Nikitin turned to referee Alexander Soin for clarification. It can be seen that the railway helmsman did not watch the seventh match of the CSKA – Severstal series, in which the hosts scored a goal in a similar situation.

Plotnikov, who was injured, went to the locker room until the end of the match, 800 for himself in the KHL. And this is a serious loss for the army.

Photo source: HC CSKA

The third half started with Grigorenko’s goal, scored with his snout, something unusual for CSKA’s best sniper in the Russian championships. Mikhail took a commanding position and, after a series of rebounds, pushed the puck towards the goal “under the ice”.

The rest of the game was spent in incessant attacks by the railwaymen. They were out of luck. The young Stepan Nikulin beat the experienced Andrey Svetlakov on the spot and rang the goal frame, and even gained a numerical advantage.

The hosts defended themselves patiently, without thinking about incursions into a foreign zone. However, Karnaukhov came close to scoring, but defender Maxim Osipov blocked his shot from half point.

The guests were not helped by a small bench sanction for violation of numerical strength. Shalunov fired tirelessly from all weapons, but to no avail. He also did not help the substitution of the goalkeeper 2.5 minutes before the siren.

– We stepped on the old rake, – Nikitin summed up the second match. – I thought we made all our mistakes in the first game, but, apparently, I was wrong.

And Fedorov was lucky again. He is still a great trainer!

Photo source: HC CSKA

The statistics speak for themselves:

• shots on goal 17-42;

• blocked shots 21-15;

• Throw-ins 25-36;

• power moves 23-13;

• penalty 10-4.


CSKA (2) – Lokomotiv (3) – 3:2 (0:1, 2:1, 1:0). Goals: Alekseev, Berezkin – Mamin, Dits, Grigorenko

Series score: 2-0 (2:0, 3:2, March 21, 23, 25*, 27*, 29*)

* If required.

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