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Pogrebnyak to satisfy hungry Zenit

Published: Thursday 1 May 2008, 8.50CET
FC Zenit St. Petersburg forward Pavel Pogrebnyak is ready to take leading man status against FC Bayern München in the absence of banned Andrei Arshavin.
by Pavel Gognidze
from St Petersburg
Pogrebnyak to satisfy hungry Zenit
Pavel Pogrebnyak will go head to head with Luca Toni ©Getty Images

Tournament statistics

ZenitBayern

Goals scored26
 
33
Attempts on target72
 
106
Attempts off target62
 
96
Corners74
 
76
Offsides36
 
33
Fouls committed222
 
155
Yellow cards36
 
19
Red cards4
 
0

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Published: Thursday 1 May 2008, 8.50CET

Pogrebnyak to satisfy hungry Zenit

FC Zenit St. Petersburg forward Pavel Pogrebnyak is ready to take leading man status against FC Bayern München in the absence of banned Andrei Arshavin.

FC Zenit St. Petersburg forward Pavel Pogrebnyak is ready to take leading man status against FC Bayern München in the absence of the suspended Andrei Arshavin.

Credentials
Arshavin may often steal the headlines but Pogrebnyak has nine UEFA Cup goals already going into the semi-final second leg – and has been called "the man who feeds our families" by his strike partner.

Shoot-out
If he is to keep satisfying the appetite of the Russian title-holders, the 24-year-old may well have to outgun Bayern's Luca Toni, the competition's ten-goal leading scorer, at the Petrovsky Stadium. Pogrebnyak has earned comparisons with the Italian both for his stature and for his striking ability, and said: "It feels good to be compared to Toni, even though he has scored more than me."

List of scalps
The Russian international – a likely candidate for Guus Hiddink's UEFA EURO 2008™ squad – will be confident enough, however, to take on Bayern without the creative flair and incisive passing of Arshavin. His optimism stems from the knockout blows which Zenit have delivered to Villarreal CF, Olympique de Marseille and Bayer O4 Leverkusen in this tournament. "All these teams are members of the European football élite and have top-class players in defence. I can't really pick out the strongest of them."

Go for it
Suitably emboldened, Zenit will treat Thursday's sequel to the 1-1 draw in Munich as business as usual, notwithstanding the absence of five first-teamers. "We have prepared as we always do, even though we are facing very serious opposition. Bayern are one of the leading clubs in Europe but we got a positive result at their place and that gives us a good chance. Whatever, we will play to win, because if we try to keep it goalless it is guaranteed we will lose."

Last updated: 02/05/08 1.12CET

http://www.uefa.com/uefaeuropaleague/season=2008/matches/round=15123/match=301973/prematch/focus/index.html#pogrebnyak+satisfy+hungry+zenit

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