Round-up of action from Eastern Europe

May 8, 2006
By Zoran Milosavljevic

BELGRADE, May 8 (Reuters) - Round-up of weekend action in eastern Europe.

ROMANIA - Rapid Bucharest and Sportul Studentesc went joint top, one point in front of Dinamo Bucharest and champions Steaua Bucharest, who have a game in hand, in a thrilling title race.

Second-half goals from Iout Mazilu and Florin Cruceru lifted Sportul to a 2-1 home win against Politehnica Iasi while Rapid missed the chance to pull clear when they were held 0-0 by Farul Constanta.

Dinamo revived their title hopes with a 3-1 win at lowly Jiul Petrosani and leapt over Steaua on goal difference.

The champions lost 1-0 at Gloria Bistrita in an ill-tempered match marred by two players' brawls and red cards for Steaua's Dorin Goian and Victoras Iacob.

CROATIA - Dinamo Zagreb won their eighth Croatian league title after a 1-0 home win against Osijek left them 11 points clear of second-placed Rijeka with two matches remaining.

Top scorer Ivan Bosnjak delighted the Dinamo faithful on the hour when he rounded off a fine solo run with a crisp shot that went in off the post.

Rijeka lost any hope of staying in the title race after a deflected shot from Sasa Sest condemned them to a 1-0 defeat at Kamen Ingrad Velika.

RUSSIA - Rubin Kazan continued their dream start to Russia's March-November championship after a 2-0 home defeat of FC Moscow left them in pole position a point ahead of champions CSKA Moscow.

Striker Alexander Bukharov scored a second-half brace from two brilliant assists by Argentine Alejandro Dominguez to give Rubin their fifth win in eight matches.

Brazilian 19-year-old prodigy Alves, the league's leading scorer with 10 goals, was on target either side of the break to lift CSKA to a 2-0 win against Amkar Perm.

UKRAINE - Champions Shakhtar Donetsk and traditional foes Dynamo Kiev will decide who wins the championship in a gripping finale on Wednesday.

First-half goals from Anatoly Tymoschuk and Cyprian Marica handed Shakhtar a 2-0 win over Chernomorets Odessa and enabled them to go level on points with Dynamo, who were held to a 0-0 draw at Tavria Simferopol.

SERBIA AND MONTENEGRO - Fourth-placed Hajduk Kula booked a UEFA Cup berth for the first time after two goals by Srdjan Stanic and one from Jovan Stojanovic steered them to a 3-1 win at relegated Jedinstvo Bijelo Polje on the final day.

Zemun became the seventh team to be relegated after a 1-1 home draw with Borac Cacak left them 10th in the 16-team first division. Three teams will be promoted to cut the top flight to 12 clubs.

BULGARIA - Levski Sofia stayed five points ahead of champions and city rivals CSKA after both teams were held to away draws.

Levski twice led at Slavia Sofia through Elin Topuzakov and Cedric Bardon but the hosts earned a 2-2 draw thanks to goals from Yanko Vulkanov and Petar Kremediev.

CSKA managed only a 0-0 stalemate at Cherno More Varna.

POLAND - Legia Warsaw closed in on the title after a 1-0 win against Amica Wronki left them five points clear of champions Wisla Krakow with two matches remaining.

Brazilian Edson da Silva scored Legia's winner when he curled in a superb free kick in the 36th minute.

Wisla Krakow kept alive their slim hopes of retaining the title with a 2-0 home victory over struggling Gornik Zabrze.

HUNGARY - Front-runners Ujpest thrashed Zalaegerszeg 5-1 to stay three points in front of champions Debrecen, who kept up the pressure with a laboured 1-0 win over Tatabanya.

Strikers Peter Rajczi and Zoltan Kovacs scored two goals each and Norbert Toth converted a penalty to keep Ujpest in the driving seat. Igor Bogdanovic netted Debrecen's winner.

SLOVENIA - A 4-0 win at Publikum Celje lifted champions Gorica five points clear at the top after closest rivals Domzale lost 2-0 at home to sixth-placed Drava.

Miran Burgic and Sasa Ranic fired Gorica ahead with early goals, Valter Birsa added the third on the stroke of halftime and Nebojsa Kovacevic completed the rout.