The Belarusian Premier League continues their third week of play after a couple of games were on the docket Friday. Gorodeya and Dinamo Minsk both emerged as winners, with wins over Belshina and Torpedo-Belaz. Torpedo opened the season looking sharp with two wins in two games. However, they let their guard down against Dinamo Minsk on Friday in a 2-0 final.
It was just discouraging after they made it look easy for the first two weeks. In any event, it’s still early in the season and a lot is going to change. That’s the way BATE must look at things, because the national powerhorse has hit a power outage thus far. They will look to avoid a winless start to the season on Saturday at home.
Elsewhere in Belarus, Shakhtyor will be looking for two wins in three weeks after responding with a victory after a loss. Shakhtyor were losers in their opener against Torpedo, 1-0, though looked much better the next week versus Gorodeya in a 2-0 win. They’re a better team than they demonstrated in the first Matchday of the season, so last week was a better example of what we should expect to find from them in 2020.
Judging a team by their first match of a season is never an accurate barometer for how the rest of the year is going to transpire. Though, there’s still some unknowns regarding Shakhtyor Soligorsk. I’m speculating that they’re better than they showed in Matchday 1, but let’s see how they react following their first win of the season. Neman Grodno will be in their way looking to pull off an upset on the road.
Neman Grodno heads into this match with a record of 1-0-1 following a loss and win as well. They’re on the same trajectory at the moment, but there will be some changes after Saturday. Neman Grodon were an average outfit in 2019, while Shakhtyor ranked among the best in the Belarusian Premier League. With BATE struggling thus far, we could be in for a different feel in 2020, though. Head below for our free Shakhtyor Soligorsk vs. Neman Grodno pick for April 4, 2020.
Shakhtyor Soligorsk vs. Neman Grodno Belarusian Premier League Betting Odds:
Shakhtyor Soligorsk vs. Neman Grodno Prediction:
There were three top contenders in the Belarusian Premier League last season. Shakhtyor was one of those teams, as they finished in the top-3. Other than those three teams, which included Dinamo Brest, BATE, and Shakhtyor, there weren’t any contenders. Shakhtyor ultimately finished with a record of 20-5-5 for 3rd in the Premier League. The closest club behind them, Dinamo Minsk, posted a mark of 15-5-10 and 50 points. That put Dinamo Minsk 15 points behind Shakhtyor for 3rd. Besides those three teams, the Premier League wasn’t very competitive in Belarus.
Shakhtyor was efficient with an impressive goal differential of +38 as opposed to +4 for Dinamo Minsk. There wasn’t much debate who the best teams in Belarus were in 2019. With their effort in Matchday 1, Shakhytor did not look like the same, though had a nice response versus Gorodeya for a 2-0 win. The better team was clearly Shakhtyor as they ruled the time of possession 70% to 30%. They put 9 shots on target, while Gorodeya managed only one clean shot at Shakhtyor’s net. Shakhtyor committed 15 fouls to 21 for Gorodeya.
Neman Grodno finished 10-6-14 with 36 points for 10th. They got the win last week after a loss in the opener, but the opponent they beat is not good. Vitebsk were barely good enough to play well enough to stay out of relegation territory, as they finished with a record of 8-7-15 and 31 points. When Neman played a better team in the first week, they fell by a score of 1-0. And in the win they had, it was a rather even contest. They didn’t excel despite getting a 2-0 victory. Time of possession was essentially shared with Vitebsk winning in that regard slightly 53% to 47%. Neman was ahead by 1 shot on target, though they committed more fouls, 21 to 17. If Shakhtyor wants to play on Saturday, they should get the win at home.