Two-time former champions Lokomotiv Moscow regained the lead in the Russian Premiership following a 3-0 win over ten-man visitors Volga Nizhny Novgorod.
The railway-backed side moved on to 51 points from 24 matches, one point ahead of Zenit St. Petersburg. Reigning champions CSKA Moscow sit third on 46 points. Lokomotiv dominated play, pinning Volga back right from the kick-off. Volga were left with an uphill task when Polish full-back Piotr Polczak was sent off in the 24th minute for a professional foul on Senegalese striker Dame N'Doye.
Russian international Alexander Samedov put Lokomotiv in front in the 32nd minute with a precise spotkick after Volga defenders fouled Brazilian forward Marques Maicon in their area.
Maicon made it 2-0 for the Muscovites less than a minute after the interval, firing the ball under the crossbar from 12 metres on Samedov's right-handed cross. N'Doye rounded off the scoring with 19 minutes to go sending the ball home past helpless Volga 'keeper Sergei Pareiko after beating the guests' defence on a breakaway.
"It wasn't so easy to win today as one may imagine looking at the scoreline," Lokomotiv manager Leonid Kuchuk said. "Volga looked not bad at all from the start but after their defender was sent off they lost their nerve, while we took control and scored. After we netted the second goal everything in the match was decided."