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Jul 31, 2006

Round-up of the action from Eastern Europe

BELGRADE, July 31 (Reuters) - Round-up of the weekend action in eastern Europe.

RUSSIA - Champions CSKA Moscow salvaged a 2-2 draw at struggling city rivals Torpedo to stay second, two points behind first division newcomers Spartak Nalchik who have a game in hand.

Surprise leaders Spartak can go five points clear halfway through Russia's March-November championship when they visit 12th-placed Rostov later on Monday.

Serbian midfielder Milos Krasic scored with a superb long-range effort and set up an injury time equaliser for Bosnian defender Elvir Rahimic as CSKA came from behind twice.

Spartak Moscow moved two places up into third position with a 3-1 win at Amkar Perm while city rivals Lokomotiv slipped to fourth after a 1-1 draw at Saturn Ramenskoye.

UKRAINE - Dynamo Kiev, champions Shakhtar Donetsk and Metalist Kharkiv are setting the early pace after two wins out of two.

A brace from Brazilian midfielder Diogo Rincon and a spectacular goal by compatriot Carlos Correa steered Dynamo to a 5-0 drubbing of Metalurg Zaporizhya.

Shakhtar's Nigerian striker Julius Aghahowa and Romanian defender Ciprian Marica were on target either side of the break to give them a 2-0 win at promoted Zorya Lugansk.

Metalist maintained their own perfect start with a 2-0 home win against city rivals FC Kharkiv.

POLAND - Legia Warsaw began their title defence with a 3-1 defeat of Cracovia Krakow while newcomers LKS Lodz enjoyed the biggest win on the opening day with a 4-0 rout of Pogon Szczecin.

Brazilians Elton Rodrigues, Hugo Alcantara and Roger Guerreiro scored for Legia after Piotr Giza had given Cracovia an early lead.

Wisla Krakow, the winners of four titles in the last five years, beat Gornik Zabrze 1-0 after Cleber drilled in a 22nd minute penalty.

CROATIA - Champions Dinamo Zagreb got off to a winning start with a 1-0 defeat of Slaven Belupo Koprivnica after Davor Vugrinec turned in Eduardo da Silva's low cross in the 37th minute.

Hajduk Split won 2-0 at Medjimurje thanks to goals from Nikica Jelavic and Tomislav Busic while NK Zagreb beat Kamen Ingrad Velika 3-1 to notch up their first win under former Croatia coach Miroslav Blazevic.

Cup holders Rijeka won 4-3 at Cibalia Vinkovci with an excellent second half performance after fighting back from a 3-1 halftime deficit.

SLOVAKIA - Leaders Dubnica had their home match against Artmedia Bratislava postponed after 11 players from the visiting team were struck down by a stomach virus.

Nitra enjoyed a 1-0 success at promoted Kosice, Slovan Bratislava beat Senec 2-0 at home and Zilina edged Spartak Trnava 1-0 to go level on points with the front-runners.

Champions Ruzomberok continued their indifferent start to the season with a 1-0 home defeat to Trencin that left them sixth with only three points from the opening three matches.

CZECH REPUBLIC - Fine individual goals by Tomas Frejlach and Jan Blazek in either half handed champions Slovan Liberec a comfortable 2-0 win at Budjejovice on the opening day.

Sparta Prague, the winners of 32 league titles, seem to have carried their poor form from last season after managing only a 0-0 draw at home to newcomers Kladno.

Champions league hopefuls Mlada Boleslav came from behind to beat Olomouc 2-1 after Radim Holub and Milos Brezinsky cancelled out Tomas Randa's penalty.

HUNGARY - Champions Debrecen started their quest for a third successive title with a 2-1 home win against Pecs thanks to goals from Ibrahim Sidibe and Zoltan Kiss.

MTK Budapest got off to a flying start after an Adam Hrepka hat-trick and a fourth from Istvan Rodenbucher gave them a 4-0 win against REAC.

ROMANIA - The opening day of the season was marred by violence when Politehnica Timisoara fans smashed the windows of visiting Steaua Bucharest's team bus after their 0-0 draw.

First half goals from Adrian Cristea and Catalin Munteanu helped Dinamo Bucharest to a 2-1 win at city rivals National, who got a late consolation through Mihai Pancu.