Russian side run out winners in final game of Austria tour
Cardiff City lost their final match of their pre-season tour of Austria as Russian outfit FK Amkar Perm claimed a 3-0 victory in Kössen.
Despite a bright start from the Bluebirds, it was Amkar Perm who took the lead just after the half hour mark as Bulgarian forward Islago Georgiev sent a chipped effort into the top corner of the net. They soon doubled their lead as a combination of defender Fabio and Aleksandr Kolomeitsev saw the ball home.
The Russian front man made it three just before half-time as he guided home a cross from the right. It was a lead they saw through to the end to condemn City to a first defeat in pre-season, but with fitness the focus in Austria positives could be taken as David Marshall, Ben Turner and Jordon Mutch completed the 90 minutes.
Scottish International goalkeeper David Marshall returned for his first start of pre-season in Kössen as manager Ole Gunnar Solskjær named a strong eleven to face the Russian Premier League side.
With plenty of minutes in mind for those who started the match at the Rambach Stadion the Bluebirds started positively in the opening minutes as the Russian side first cut out an opportunity for Federico Macheda before thwarting City’s advances through John Brayford once more just a few minutes later.
With a Russian Premier League opener against Terk Grozny just under two weeks away, it was Amkar who took the lead on the half hour mark as Georgiev made the most of some space on the edge of the area to guide a chipped finish into the top corner of the net.
If Marshall had no chance with the first, it was the same just five minutes later as Fabio inadvertently guided the ball home past his stopper as Amkar front man Kolometisev missed it. The impressive Georgiev this time turning provider to whip in the dangerous delivery.
City tried to respond to the blow of falling two behind in five minutes as Mats Moller Daehli looked to put Norwegian compatriot Magnus Wolff Eikrem through on goal just two minutes later, only for the Russian defence to cut the delivery out at the pivotal moment.
Just before the break, there was no doubt about Kolomeitsev’s finish this time, guiding a lunging header into the bottom corner of the net from a cross from the right.
HALF TIME: FK Amkar Perm 3-0 Cardiff City
Three changes at the interval for the Bluebirds saw Juan Cala, Adam Le Fondre and Javi Guerra introduced as Mark Hudson, Federico Macheda and Nicky Maynard made way.
But it was Fabio who next threatened for the Bluebirds as a darting run down the left saw him look for Spanish frontman Guerra in the area only for some stout defending from Amkar to see the ball clear.
The Brazilian full-back threatened again just before the hour mark as he this time picked out Le Fondre at the back post, only for the summer signing to send his effort over the bar.
Five further substitutions saw Guido Burgstaller, Declan John, Matt Connolly, Joe Ralls and Kim Bo Kyung enter proceedings just after the hour mark, and the South Korean International was almost presented with the perfect opportunity minutes later only to see Le Fondre’s through ball collected by the Amkar stopper.
A disappointing first defeat of pre-season for the Bluebirds in Kössen in the end, but with fitness the focus at this stage positives can be taken from David Marshall, Ben Turner and Jordon Mutch completing the 90 minutes.
FULL-TIME: FK Amkar Perm 3-0 Cardiff City
TEAM - Cardiff City: Marshall; Brayford (Connolly 61), Fabio (John 61), Hudson (Cala 45), Turner; Mutch, Whittingham (Kim 61), Dæhli (Ralls 61), Eikrem (Burgstaller 61); Maynard (Le Fondre 45), Macheda (Guerra 45). Subs not used: Lewis; Jones, Mason, Kiss, Moore.