Zenit

Last Match
Premier League

Round 1

Zenit 2 - 1 Tambov
2019-07-14 19:00 More Reports
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Premier League

Round 2

2019-07-21 19:30:00 More Previews
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Season Guide
2019/2020

Zenit

In


Luka Djordjevic (att) Arsenal Tula – end of loan; Ivan Novoseltsev (def) Rostov – end of loan; Miha Mevlja (def) Rostov – end of loan; Egor Baburin (gk) Rubin Kazan – end of loan; Ibragim Tsallagov (def) Rubin Kazan – end of loan; Dmitri Poloz (att) Rubin Kazan – end of loan;

Out


Luis Neto (sp) (def) Sporting Lisbon; Dmitri Poloz (att) Rostov; Yuri Lodygin (sp) (gk) released; Aleksandr Anyukov (sp) (def) end of career; Claudio Marchisio (sp)(mid)(released)

Zenit were the most convincing of champions last season and Semak’s men remain front runners this year too. For the second consecutive summer Zenit seem unlikely to make any big signings, with the depth in their squad so impressive that they don’t need to do so. Of course, keeping positive balance sheet for 18 months now (sold Paredes to PSG for over £40 million in the winter) means that, if Semak really wants someone, Zenit can afford to spend big. With vast experience and stars all over the pitch Zenit look covered for any eventuality. Veterans Ivanovic and Rakytskyi are expected to be once again the most effective defensive partnership in the league, with likes of Mammana and Mevlja excellent cover options. The presence of so many quality defenders in the squad also allows Semak to use formations with 3 at the back when he wants to freshen up things from his preferred 4-4-2 formation. In midfield and up front the presence of many more experienced and talented players guarantees dominance in the possession and shot attempt columns. The fact that the likes of Noboa, Hernani, Rigoni and Erokhin are seen as back up options shows how much quality is concentrated in the squad at the minute. In attack the winter arrival of Azmoun proved to be major hit already in the spring of 2019, with the Iranian forward expected to have a 20+ goal season if he stays the entire campaign at Zenit. This added to the intimidating presence of giant Dzyuba next to him and the constant threat coming down the wings Zenit are expected to improve on their scoring record from last season.

Target


Defending their title is priority, with Zenit having all the tools to achieve that. Even if they fail top 3 finish seems guaranteed.

Season Review
2018/2019

Champions: Zenit

Zenit were the most convincing of champions after spending 28 of the 30 rounds in first place and leaving no doubt, which was the best team in Russia. This despite the fact that not a single new player was signed last summer and Semak was appointed in charge for what was his first managerial job at senior level. Having big squad from previous years Zenit hit the ground running straight away and with just 2 points dropped in the first 8 rounds they took control. Some doubts appeared during the long winter break as 3 defeats in the last 4 rounds of 2018 left Zenit with only a point advantage at the top before the restart in March. Semak got busy on the transfer market during the winter though and by adding 1 key player for every area of the pitch, Rakitskiy, Barrios and Azmoun joined, plus recalling Rigoni from loan in Italy he guided Zenit to 9 wins, 3 draws and just 1 defeat in 2019. This saw the title won with 2 games to spare. Many players impressed during the campaign, all of the 4 new additions to the team during the winter were particularly good in 2019, but it was Dzyuba’s contributions throughout the entire season that made him Player of the Year. With Semak now settled in charge, great strengthening already taking place in the winter and impressive depth Zenit will aim even higher next season.


Player of the Season: Artem Dzyuba

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