Manchester United take on FC Rostov in the Europa League tonight and here are few things to know about their Russian opponents.
These two sides have never met and Rostov aren’t exactly of the stature of their fellow Russian Premier League outfits Spartak Moscow, Zenit or CSKA. So with that in mind, here’s a little more info about the side Jose Mourinho’s team face this week…
They were in the Champions League earlier this season – but when they were dropped into the same group as Bayern Munich and Atletico Madrid, progress was always unlikely. Despite that, they came third, finishing above PSV Eindhoven. They also showed what they’re capable of with a 3-2 win over Bayern Munich.
They’ve not lost a single home league game this season, winning seven and drawing two.
They play at the Olimp-2 – a stadium built in 1930 which has a capacity of just over 15,000.
They are currently seventh in the Russian Premier League.
They are based in the town of Rostov (perhaps unsurprisingly) which is north east of Moscow.
The pitch at their ground is awful, with Jose Mourinho comparing it to the turf at Beijing’s National Stadium that led to the cancellation of the pre-season friendly between United and Man City. ‘In a very similar pitch in the summer in China, we and Manchester City decided not to play. But it looks like we have to play.’ Uefa have since confirmed there is no chance the match will be called off.
They won 6-0 away at the weekend, completely thrashing bottom of the table Tom Tomsk.
Dimitriy Poloz is Rostov’s greatest threat, with the forward notching a club-best three goals in the Champions League this season before their elimination. He’s also their joint top scorer in the league. The 25-year-old Russian can operate in attack or midfield, also showing an eye for an assist.