Matchday 8 of the Russian Premier League takes place this weekend, with FC Ufa hosting CSKA Moscow at the Neftyanik Stadium.
The home side are currently in an early relegation battle and will be keen to start accruing points to avoid dropping down into the PFL.
CSKA Moscow, on the other hand, are one of the traditional giants in Russia and have their sights firmly set on wresting the title from rivals Zenit Saint Petersburg.
They currently sit fourth, three points behind the current champions and table-toppers and will need all three points to keep pace with Zenit.
The Red-Blues picked up a morale-boosting 3-1 victory against Lokomotiv in the Moscow derby last time out and will be full of confidence heading into the clash with UFA.
Their opponents also picked up a win of their own – albeit against inferior opposition in the Russian Cup, with their 1-0 victory over third division side Leningradets halting a run of five games without a victory.
FC Ufa vs CSKA Moscow Head-to-Head
FC Ufa have clashed with CSKA Moscow on 18 occasions in the past and unsurprisingly, the capital side has the superior record.
Moscow are yet to lose to Ufa, having picked up 12 victories and six draws in the past, with 33 goals scored and just nine conceded.
The most recent meeting between the pair came just before the COVID-19 lockdown in March and saw both sides play out a goalless draw.
FC Ufa form guide (all competitions): L-L-D-L-W
CSKA Moscow form guide (all competitions): L-D-W-W-W
FC Ufa vs CSKA Moscow Team News
FC Ufa manager Vadim Evseev has an almost full squad to pick from, although winger Dimitri Sysuev is still ruled out, while defender Pavel Alikin is walking on a disciplinary tight rope and runs the risk of being suspended.
Injuries: Dimitri Sysuev
Risk of suspension: Pavel Alikin
CSKA have been plagued by injury troubles in the last few months and currently have no fewer than five first-team players sidelined with different injury concerns.
Defenders Kirill Nababkin (cruciate ligament), Bruno Fuchs (bruised hip) and Igor Diveev (hip flexor), as well as star midfielder Alan Dzagoev are all ruled out, while Ilzat Akhmetov could return to full fitness this weekend.
Injuries: Kirill Nababkin, Bruno Fuchs, Igor Diveev, Alan Dzagoev
Doubtful: lzat Akhmetov
Risk of suspension: Baktiyar Zaynutdinov, Konstantin Maradishvii
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FC Ufa vs CSKA Moscow Predicted XI
FC Ufa Predicted XI: (5-4-1): Aleksandr Belenov, Bojan Jokic, Jemal Tabitze, Pavel Alikin, Ionut Nedelcearu, Aleksandr Sukov, Azer Aliyev, Igor Bezdenezhnykh, Oleh Danchenko, Kirill Folmer, Timur Zhamaletdinov
CSKA Moscow Predicted XI: (4-2-3-1): Igor Akinfeev, Georgy Schennikov, Hordur Magnusson, Viktor Vasin, Mario Fernandes, Konstantin Maradishvili, Ivan Oblyakov, Chidera Ejuke, Nikola Vlasic, Konstantin Kuchaev, Fedor Chale
FC Ufa vs CSKA Moscow Prediction
As already indicated, CSKA Moscow are among the most decorated sides in Russian football history and Ufa have more modest beginnings.
This is best evident in the one-sided matches between the two sides and it looks unlikely that CSKA’s unbeaten run against Ufa will be ended this weekend.
Victor Goncharenko’s side have been in fine form of late, with their derby win making it three victories on the trot to keep them within touching distance of top spot.
Ufa, meanwhile, have picked up just one victory from their seven league games to date and CSKA Moscow will have too much in the tank for them.
Prediction: FC Ufa 0-2 CSKA Moscow