Last-gasp goal earns U.S. draw in Russia

Wed Nov 14, 2012 2:12pm EST
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KRASNODAR, Russia (Reuters) - Mix Diskerud scored deep into stoppage time as the United States twice fought back from a goal down to hold Russia to a 2-2 draw in the first match between the two former Cold War adversaries since 2000 on Wednesday.

Debutant Fyodor Smolov put the home team 1-0 up in the ninth minute of the friendly before Michael Bradley's spectacular volley in the 76th minute rewarded an improved second-half display by the Americans in the southern city of Krasnodar.

Roman Shirokov restored Russia's advantage with an 84th-minute penalty and it seemed they would extend their winning streak to five games under Italian coach Fabio Capello.

Substitute Diskerud's low shot then took a lucky bounce and fooled keeper Vladimir Gabulov four minutes into stoppage time.

The Americans were tentative early on and the hosts took full advantage, Smolov beating keeper Tim Howard with a low drive into the corner of the net.

Smolov's joy was short-lived though as suffered a leg muscle injury and had to be substituted.

The U.S., who also lost skipper Carlos Bocanegra to injury early in the first half, had trouble keeping possession.

Clarence Goodson, who replaced Bocanegra, produced the first shot for the visitors after nearly half an hour but it was easily saved by Gabulov.

Russia increased the tempo after the break as Alan Dzagoyev went close with a header and fellow substitute Renat Yanbayev fired straight at Howard from close range.   Continued...

Russia coach Fabio Capello (R) and U.S. coach Jurgen Klinsmann watch their teams during their international friendly soccer match in Krasnodar November 14, 2012. REUTERS/Vitaliy Timkiv