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Sardar Azmoun © Gallo Images

Azmoun double guides Zenit to win over Orenburg

Iranian striker Sardar Azmoun scored another brace for his new club as high-flying Zenit Saint Petersburg came from a goal down to beat Orenburg 3-1, maintaining a six-point lead in the Russian Premier League on Sunday.

The 24-year-old Azmoun, who joined Zenit from Rubin Kazan in February, also scored twice in their Europa League win over Fenerbahce and bagged a winner in the Russian league against Yekaterinburg.

The win keeps Zenit six points clear of defending champions Lokomotiv Moscow, who edged city rivals Dynamo 1-0 on Saturday.

Krasnodar, who thrashed Anzhi Makhachkala 5-0, sit third, also on 38 points.

Zenit dominated from the kick-off but midfielder Alexei Sutormin put Orenburg ahead in the 33rd minute when he scored off a left-wing cross by Sergei Terekhov.

Azmoun pulled Zenit level three minutes after the interval, redirecting a short cross by Yury Zhirkov into the net.

Ukrainian full-back Yaroslav Rakitskiy Rakitskiy had Zenit fans on their feet in the 81st minute when he put the hosts into the lead firing the ball home with a well-struck 22-yard freekick.

Azmoun netted his second of the match with two minutes to go to secure Saint Petersburg side's well-deserved win.

"In the first half our defence played extremely badly and we paid the price for it," Zenit manager Sergei Semak said. "Luckily we played much better football after the break."

Elsewhere, Krasnodar were in complete control against the visitors Anzhi Makhachkala and in the 18th minute Brazilian Wanderson opened the score from close range after a one-two with Viktor Claesson.

Claesson added a goal from the spot in the 38th minute after Anzhi midfielder Roland Gigolaev handballed in his box.

After the break, 19-year-old forward Magomed-Shapi Suleymanov added a brace, while Ivan Ignatiev also scored for Krasnodar to complete the rout.


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