Paredes and Driussi pave the way for an Argentine revolution at Zenit & more could follow


There is little doubt what Zenit St Petersburg’s scouts have been watching over the past year and on Saturday, it reaped immediate rewards as Sebastián Driussi sealed three points alongside compatriot Leandro Paredes. The Argentine duo have made a positive start under Roberto Mancini but could soon be made to feel all the more welcome by further additions potentially on their way to Club Atlético Zenit San Petersburgo.

After watching Moscow clubs, CSKA and Spartak lift the Russian league title over the past two seasons and twice failing to qualify for the Champions League, Zenit St. Petersburg appear to mean business this year and after appointing Roberto Mancini as manager have reopened the cheque book to deliver the Italian a team capable of wrestling back the trophy.

Leandro Paredes was the first big-money signing through the door when Zenit threw $31 million in the direction of Roma. The classy, deep-lying playmaker had earned his stripes in Serie A and just as the 23-year-old had broken into Jorge Sampaoli’s Argentina squad, Russia came calling.

Plying his trade in Rome will have meant Mancini being acutely aware of his talent and while many were surprised by Paredes making the switch from Italy to the less glamorous world of Russian football, it was a transfer that made a real statement of intent.

The midfielder has started both matches as Zenit have made a winning start to their season but it was Sebastián Driussi, who stole the headlines at the weekend.

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