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CSKA Moscow 2-1 Wolfsburg - Lineups & Stats
Champions League Results/Standings

CSKA Moscow kept their Champions League aspirations alive after coming from behind to defeat Wolfsburg 2-1 at the Luzhniki Stadium.

Edin Dzeko had given Die Wolfe a first half advantage with a neat finish but the Moscovites were not to be denied, and goals from Tomas Necid and the outstanding Milos Krasic meant they kept their qualification hopes alive until the final round of fixtures.

The match began in a tentative manner, with the Russians well aware that anything other than a victory would consign them to a Europa League battle with Besiktas. Their danger man throughout the match was Krasic, who bombed forward whenever possible to support the front two of Alan Dzagoev and Necid.

He created one of the best opportunities of the half, demonstrating supreme close control and dribbling ability to burst through the Germans’ back line, but neglected to pull the trigger at the most opportune moment, and the chance was gone.

Wolfsburg had barely offered an offensive threat, but broke the deadlock thanks to their prolific striker, Edin Dzeko. The Bosnian broke the offside trap to latch onto a pass from partner Obafemi Martins, and finished clinically into the far corner as Akinfeev advanced.

Going behind left CSKA Moscow with a mountain to climb, but they did not lose heart and the ever-enterprising Krasic continued to drive them forward. Indeed the equaliser should have arrived before half-time, but when the ball broke to Aleksei Beretzutsky in the area, he could only fire his shot straight at Benaglio, who palmed the effort to safety.

After the break, the objective was clear for the Russians – 45 minutes to win the match or miss out on the last sixteen – and they produced a barnstorming display.

Just before hour mark, a dinked cross from Evgeni Aldonin found Necid with the freedom of the area to nod the ball home and light the blue touch paper for the closing stages.

Wolfsburg were looking uneasy for the first time in the match, and were well aware that defeat would leave them needing a result against Manchester United in the final round of fixtures.

However, they simply could not contain the home side, and ultimately succumbed to the brilliance of Milos Krasic. The 25-year- old was far and away the most talented player on the pitch, and on 65 minutes he collected the ball, turned in one movement, and rifled an unstoppable strike into the top corner of Benaglio’s net.

It was a simply stunning goal, and one that went some way to re-igniting the belief of the home fans. Die Wolfe were shell-shocked, and attempted to fight their way back into the contest, but other than a floated cross that Akinfeev palmed to safety, they produced little as injury time closed in.

Alan Dzagoev flashed a shot wide of the post with Benaglio stretching, but the Russians had done enough to seal the win - and set up a grandstand final round to decide who joins the English champions in the next round.

Paul Macdonald, Goal.com

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