Most Decorated Players of Soviet and Russian League Football

After a previous article exploring the "Soviet Champions, too" (players who played just one game in a season in which their team won the league), it's only logical to show the polar opposite: The most decorated players of Soviet and Russian football. READ MORE: "I was a Soviet Champion, too!" For this, I devised a numerical formula. Each trophy is worth a specific amount of points (league title - 50, European cup - 40, Soviet/Russian cup - 25, European Supercup - 10, Russian Supercup - 5). … [Read more...]

Spartak Moscow – Lokomotiv Moscow: Match Report and Press Conferences

Spartak Moscow - Lokomotiv Moscow 3-4 (2-0) Spartak Moscow: Selikhov - Eschenko, Tasci, Bocchetti, Kombarov - Glushakov, Pašalić (Fernando, 72), Samedov, Ananidze (Melgarejo, 46), Promes - Luiz Adriano. Lokomotiv Moscow: Guilherme - Ignatyev, Kverkvelia, Pejcinovic, Rybus (V. Denisov, 46) - I. Denisov, Barinov (Kolomeitsev, 78), Tarasov (An. Miranchuk, 46) - Al. Miranchuk, Fernandes, Farfán. Goals: Glushakov, 30 - 1:0. Luiz Adriano, 43 - 2:0. Barinov, 48 - 2:1. Al. Miranchuk, 68 - 2:2. … [Read more...]

Interview with Maksym Kalynychenko, Part Two: The FNL, Spartak under Oleg Romantsev, and more.

Maksym Kalynychenko, who played for Spartak Moscow from 2000-2008 sat down with Alexey Spektrowski in collaboration with our friends over at ProSpartak. Here we present Part Two of the interview in English, where the pair discusses the state of the FNL and Maksym's experiences of traveling throughout Russia, Soviet Football including the work and life of Nikolai Starostin and Oleg Romantsev's dominant Spartak Moscow side in the 1990s. Make sure to read Part One first, … [Read more...]

Interview with Maksym Kalynychenko, Part One: Spartak’s Situation Today

Maksym Kalynychenko, who played for Spartak Moscow from 2000-2008 sat down with Alexey Spektrowski in collaboration with our friends over at ProSpartak. Here we present Part One of the interview in English, where the pair discusses the current situation in Spartak, the players, and Massimo Carrera. ***   The first questions, of course, will concern Spartak. What happened in the game against CSKA? Well... Everyone saw what happened. We lost. Losing a game in two minutes is bad, … [Read more...]

Weighted Ages For RFPL Teams After 5 Rounds

In what is going to be a regular feature, I’m going to give you some curious stats about RFPL. I developed a measure called “weighted season-average age”, which is more precise than the simple squad average age because it reflects actual usage of the players rather than simple presence in the squad list. Here’s how a given team’s weighted season-average age is calculated: First, you calculate the season-average age for all players in the squad. Season-average age is the average of a … [Read more...]

Teams that thrashed incumbent Soviet/Russian champions

After Zenit St. Petersburg soundly beat Spartak Moscow 5-1 last weekend, I did some research to look for other teams who managed to beat the reigning Soviet or Russian champions with three goals or more. Turns out, it was Zenit's third such win after 1958 (Dinamo Moscow) and 1971 (CSKA Moscow) and the 36th "champion-thrashing" overall. Spartak Moscow are now clean first on the overall list, having suffered through eight crushing defeats; they overtook Dinamo Moscow, who have seven such defeats, … [Read more...]

“I was a Soviet champion, too!”

Today, I'll treat you to an interesting list of mostly obscure players. How obscure, you might ask? Well, they played exactly one game in a season where their team won gold, and never won championships again. Some players became "champions-too", but later won other championships (either with their own team, or with another). These players didn't make the list. 1936 Spring, Dinamo Moscow Viktor Dubinin (1901-1984). 1 game (90 minutes), 0 goals. Became Dinamo's manager in 1937 after … [Read more...]

Timeline of the Renaming of Russian Top Flight Clubs

The Soviet football system was very dissimilar to the Western system. In the early 1920s, all pre-revolutionary football clubs were dissolved; some of them were basically reformed under new names, after moving their "franchise" (football team) to some other location, some were created anew. There were no "football clubs" per se in the Soviet Union - officially, all football teams belonged to some "voluntary sports society" or the other, which was reflected in their names. Here's an incomplete … [Read more...]

Nikolai Starostin: My Football Years (Chapter 8) – Back to the Beginning

Nikolai Petrovich Starostin (1902-1996) was a Soviet football player and official. He was the co-founder of Spartak Moscow, which turned into the most popular club in the USSR and Russia, and worked as its head administrator for most of his life. Starostin is considered one of the most legendary and universally revered figures of Soviet football. In 1986, he published the book ‘My Football Years’ with Lev Filatov, and even well into his eighties, he retained a keen understanding of the game, … [Read more...]

Nikolai Starostin: My Football Years (chapter 7) – The Consistency of Mastery

Nikolai Petrovich Starostin (1902-1996) was a Soviet football player and official. He was the co-founder of Spartak Moscow, which turned into the most popular club in the USSR and Russia, and worked as its head administrator for most of his life. Starostin is considered one of the most legendary and universally revered figures of Soviet football. In 1986, he published the book ‘My Football Years’ with Lev Filatov, and even well into his eighties, he retained a keen understanding of the game, … [Read more...]