FK AGMK 0-6 FK Pakhtakor, Champions League hopefuls Demolished by Rampant Champions
Hapless AGMK miss out on a place in next season's AFC Champions League and a second place spot in the Uzbekistan Super League as results go against them and they were beaten soundly by imperious Pakhtakor.
Having received the news just before kick off that Nasaf Qarshi had won their own match and ended any hope of coming second and getting a Champions League spot, it was always going to be a challenge for AGMK to motivate themselves. That proved to be the case, as champions elect Pakhtakor proved their title credentials by running riot in Olmaliq.
Both sides kicked off playing in mirrored 4-3-2-1 set ups, but with holding midfielder Jo'rayev dropping into the AGMK defence to make a 5-3-1 out of possession, Pakhtakor struggled to create any significant openings. Chances were few and far between until left winger Masharipov was slipped through on goal from an incisive pass by Ceran and clipped a delightful finish over the onrushing Sultonov.
AGMK almost found an immediate reply as winger Tursunov's good work down the right flank was nearly rewarded with a goal as he slipped through centre forward, Vatsadze, whose fierce drive was blocked by keeper Suyunov.
Pakhtakor's three attacking midfielders, Mashirpov, Ceran and Khamadamov were starting to find their rhythm and find spaces behind the AGMK midfield, and it was the two wide men who combined for Pakhtakor's second goal. Marshirpov picked up the ball on the left wing before switching play to Khamadamov. The right winger cut inside onto his left foot and unleashed a blistering strike from 25 yards which crashed in off the underside of the bar -- a goal of the season contender for sure.
AGMK heads were dropping and Pakhtakor's fluid football was causing the back 5 numerous problems. With both Marshirpov and Khamdamov cutting inside, the Cotton Growers' wing backs were getting in behind time and time again and it was the combination that brought the third goal. Sayfiev broke down the wing and his deflected cross fell to right back Alijonov whose powerful strike hit the cross bar and fell to Sergeev to nod home.
Just four minutes later, on the stroke of half time, Khamdamov turned provider, whipping in a cross which glanced off of Vatsadze into his own net. AGMK's initially brave resistance had been broken and a half time score of 4-0 to the visitors was threatening to become embarrassing in the second half.
With the win in the bag, Pakhtakor took their foot off the gas and the pace of the match was significantly slower. Perhaps the one exception would be with Ceran who finally grabbed the goal the number 10 so thoroughly deserved. After being found by Sergeev on the edge of the box, he picked out the top corner expertly. Man of the Match Khamdmamov wrapped up the win when he was found once again by Marsharipov as he ghosted into the penalty area unmarked and glanced a header home from 10 yards out.
The result is a disappointing end to what has been an extremely positive season for AGMK. For a side who usually are battling against relegation, a genuine push for a Champions League place has been very impressive. However, they will sign off with a bitter taste, having been in second so late in the campaign only to lose their final three matches of the season. In particular, they will point to the loss at rivals Nasaf Qarshi as the moment they lost their grip on the Champions League spot. Mirjalol Qosimov will look to build on the club's highest ever finish and do one better next season and come second.
As for Pakhtakor, they re-established a ten point lead at the top of the league and will look to extend that to lead 13 points next week when they play their final match of the season away at Bunyodkor. It has been a tremendous season for the Cotton Growers and they will be looking to next season with the hope of making it three league titles in a row.
Full Match and highlights can be viewed below or at MyCujoo.tv.
I collected all the data myself so may be inaccurate. I also took all photos from the Telegram pages of the clubs with their expressed permission. League table taken from us.soccerway.com.
Link's to the club websites and social media accounts are below.