Spartak suffer third consecutive defeat
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Russia's most successful club Spartak Moscow, who have struggled since the winter break, suffered their third consecutive defeat in a 2-1 loss at ten-man Tomsk.

The defeat left nine-time champions Spartak, who cannot qualify for the UEFA Champions League, in sixth, two points behind FC Krasnodar in the final European qualifying position with just two matches left.

"It's a disaster!" Spartak caretaker coach Dmitry Gunko said, who took over last month after Valery Karpin was sacked. "Everything could have gone completely differently if Yura Movsisyan managed to convert his early opportunity. But he missed his chance and we failed to overcome ten-man Tomsk. I have no explanations for the mistakes that we made in every match. It's just a disaster."

The win lifted Tomsk, who recorded their first ever victory over Spartak, up to 12th and clear of the possibility of direct relegation -- the bottom two are relegated while third and fourth bottom have play-offs against the third and fourth teams from the second division.

After a goalless first half, forward Kirill Panchenko put Tomsk 1-0 up in the 53rd minute from the penalty spot after striker Igor Portnyagin was fouled in the area. In the 57th minute Tomsk were reduced to ten men after Belarus midfielder Pavel Nekhaichil was sent off for an elbow, but Portnyagin made it 2-0 for the hosts with a header from a corner just past the hour mark.

Armenian striker Yura Movsisyan reduced the deficit with five minutes to go but Spartak's hopes went up in smoke in the last minute when goalkeeper Andrei Dykan was also sent off for a professional foul.

"We showed strong character and team spirit to earn this win that is vital for us," Tomsk manager Vasily Baskakov said. "We lacked accuracy in attack in the first half but after the break we managed to boost our attacking play and score twice. We looked the better side and deservedly won today."

In the other Saturday match Kuban Krasnodar thrashed Samara 4-0 to go seventh. Bulgarian defender Stanisalav Manolev put Kuban into the lead three minutes after the interval.

Paraguayan defender Lorenzo Melgarejo added a brace before Ghanian midfielder Mohammed Rabiu rounded off the scoring with ten minutes to go.