Poli - FC Arges 2:1 (1:1)

It was a difficult restart for Poli who had to wait until the 85th minute to get the winner against FC Arges. However, there were two very different sides to the match.

To begin with, the game was quite balanced, but after a poor recovery following a corner kick, Nastasie managed to trick Karamyan and Badoi on the counter-attack, scoring with a well placed shot by Pantilimon. The white-violets recovered quickly and ten minutes later Karamyan sent a good cross from a corner kick, Bucur headed the ball towards Parks, but before the Costarican could do anything, the ball hit Lacusta and passed the Arges goalkeeper. Poli controlled the game until half-time, but only came really close to scoring when Stancu went by two defenders - however, he couldn't beat Bosneag.
The second half was completely different as Balint's team reverted to a classic 4-4-2 (from 4-3-3) and suddenly found itself out of ideas. Another reason for this might have been Goga's injury and Parks substitution at the end of the first half, given that Magera and Borbely did put as much pressure on the Arges defense. Despite some small opportunities through Bucur and Karamyan, it was by chance that Stancu managed to put Poli ahead, after Bosneag sloppily parried a good Alexa shot and the former Steaua midfielder pushed the ball past the goalkeeper. Rusic could have and even should have scored five minutes later, when he was left one on one with the goalie following a Magera pass, but his finish was poor and went past the post.

In the end though, three points are three points and there are some promising things in Poli's game. It will take more time though to see the extent of Balint's changes in terms of both quality and efficiency.

Poli: Pantilimon (5,5) - Bădoi (4,5), Luchin (6), Cisovsky (6,5), Latovlevici (5,5) - Stancu (6,5), Alexa (6,5), Artiom Karamyan (5) - Goga (5,5), Parks (6), Bucur (5,5)

Borbely (5,5), Magera (5,5) and Rusic (5) came on for Goga, Parks and Bucur.

Nastasie goal (min 8)

Lacusta own goal (min 19)

Stancu goal (min 85)

Stancu miss (min 37)

Karamyan chance (min 71)

Rusic miss (min 91)


Results and highlights

So this is a bit of a summary of the Spanish experience, up to now. Just click on the matches for highlights.

Poli - Brondby 0:2 (0:1)

Poli - Spartak Moscow 1:1 (0:0)
- Magera goal

Poli - Sparta Prague 1:1 (0:1)
- Art. Karamyan goal

Poli - IFK Goteberg 0:2 (0:2)

Poli - Cracovia Krakow 2:1 (0:1)
- Arm. Karamyan and Sretenovic goals


No Spain, no gain

The white-violets have been preparing for the season restart in Spain starting this week. While Sretenovic is poised to leave the club with youngster Scutaru coming in to replace him, there are few other transfer news items worth mentioning.

The first two friendlies were played against Cracovia Krakow (2:1) and IFK Goteberg (0:2). Arman Karamyan and Sretenovic scored in the first match, while two defensive blunders and a tirade of missed chances lead to the second loss in the "Balint era". Sparta Prague (10th of February) and Spartak Moscow (13th of February) are the other two opponents Poli will meet while in Spain.

And just in case any fan of IFK is reading this, Amuneke is definitely not our star player. Good one, though.

You can watch the IFK match highlights here.