Is Samara ready to host the 2018 World Cup?

With the World Cup coming up in less than a year, cities all over Russia are giving their best efforts to prepare for the competition and the massive influx of tourists it will undoubtedly bring. At the beginning of September, Russian Football News had the opportunity to visit Samara; the sixth largest city in Russia and host of six World Cup matches next year. During the time there, a close eye was kept on the changes that were being made in time for the World’s most popular sporting … [Read more...]

Season Preview: Zenit St. Petersburg

When André Villas-Boas left Zenit at the end of the 2015/16 season, he was replaced by the man who had turned Shakhtar Donetsk into the dominant force of Ukrainian football, Mircea Lucescu. The Romanian even managed to win a trophy in his first official match at the club, as his side beat CSKA Moscow in the Russian Super Cup. This, however, turned out to be the only silverware Zenit would win all season, as they crashed out of the Europa League in the Round of 32, missed out on Champions League … [Read more...]

Russia’s Limit on Foreign Players set to be Changed

Massive news has just come out from Russia’s deputy prime minister and president of the Russian Football Union, Vitaly Mutko, who has announced that the limit on foreign players in the Russian Football Premier League will be altered for the start of the 2018/19 season. He didn’t give any concrete details on the new limit, but he did mention that it would be a limit on registering players rather than a quota on how many foreign players can be used on the pitch at any time. Currently, the 6+5 … [Read more...]

Season Preview: Dinamo Moscow

Following their relegation to the Football National League in 2016, Dinamo Moscow had one main task for the season ahead. This was to bounce straight back up to Russia’s top flight. Not only did they manage this, but they did it in style, winning the league with 12 more points than second placed Tosno, and only losing three times in the league all season. Determined to start climbing back to the top of Russian football, Dinamo have already made four signings this summer. Having tied down … [Read more...]

Naturalisation and Foreign Player Limits in Russian Football

In the last couple of years, Russian football has seen a huge increase of naturalised players in the country’s top division, as well as the first ever naturalised players in the national team. Although this was a controversial decision by the Russian Football Union (RFU), what really caught many people's eye was how these players were able to obtain citizenship. Lokomotiv Moscow goalkeeper Marinato Guilherme was the first non-Russian to play for the national team, and although many Russian … [Read more...]

5 Russians Who Could Move to Europe’s Top Leagues This Summer

After Russia reached the semi-finals of Euro 2008, it was only natural that many of their players were sought after by European clubs. By August of the following year, Andrei Arshavin, Roman Pavlyuchenko, Diniyar Bilyaletdinov and Yuri Zhirkov had all made their way over to the Premier League. Almost ten years have passed since that tournament, and since Arshavin’s four goals at Anfield, Russian players have had little to boast about in Europe. Currently, there are only two players in … [Read more...]

RFPL Preview Round 19

From this spring, we are happy to announce that we have changed the format of the RFN Betting Advice. Instead of only covering a few games, from now on we’ll give you previews to all eight RFPL games each round, with an extensive look at one game, the Game of the Round.  In these previews, we’ll give you everything you need to know about the top flight, from injuries to form as well as all the chaotic aspects that surrounds the beautiful game in Russia.  We have previously proven that we … [Read more...]

Anderlecht – Zenit Preview: Can Zenit Continue Their European March?

After winning five out of their six Europa League matches this season, Zenit found themselves comfortably on top of Group D, and more importantly, through to the Round of 32. Their opponents, Anderlecht, on the other hand, came second in a group that featured Saint-Étienne, Mainz 05 and Gabala FK, with Saint-Étienne taking the top spot. Today we take a look at Zenit’s chances of progression into the next round of the tournament, and the physical condition of the team coming in to the first leg, … [Read more...]

Zenit St. Petersburg’s Winter Dealings

After a solid first half to their season, Zenit St. Petersburg find themselves in second place of the Russian Football Premier League and through to the Round of 32 in the Europa League, after placing first in a group that featured Maccabi Tel-Aviv, Dundalk and AZ Alkmaar. In the months leading up to the January transfer window, it was widely speculated that one of Zenit’s most marketable players, Axel Witsel, could leave the club for as little as €6 million in January to Italian giants … [Read more...]