A Look at the Current State of the RFPL

As the winter break neared, the main story in the Russian Football Premier League (RFPL) was the exit of Leonid Slutsky from CSKA Moscow. Slutsky’s departure comes while his side is third in the league table, eight points off the leaders Spartak Moscow and struggling for form. He however leaves as the longest serving manager of the club and one of their most significant. Will Viktor Goncharenko be able to turn the CSKA around? Slutsky has managed the club for seven years since 2009, with 167 … [Read more...]

Will Fyodor Smolov Earn a Big Money Move This Summer?

Fyodor Smolov enjoyed an immense 2015-16 campaign as he finished as the Russian Premier League’s top goal scorer with 20 strikes in just 29 appearances as well as winning the ‘Russian Player of the Year’ award in the RFN Awards. The 26-year-old’s ability to shake off his markers in the penalty area and finishing ability are both unrivalled in Russia and he could earn a move to a bigger club this summer. In fact, he even scored more goals than Zenit St Petersburg star Hulk, who is widely regarded … [Read more...]

Russia Fire Warning to England Despite Loss in Paris

Despite suffering a narrow 4-2 defeat at the Stade De France this past week, Russia certainly demonstrated more than enough quality to worry European Championship opponents, including opening fixture rivals England. Having gone two goals down early in the first half on what was an emotional night in Paris, as the Stade De France staged its first fixture since the attacks on the city back in November, Russia could have easily rolled over and admitted defeat. However, a strong second half display … [Read more...]

Doumbia’s surprise selection when quizzed on perfect addition for CSKA

If any of us, as supporters, were left in charge of our chosen football club, while offered free rein when it comes to transfers, there are any number of leading lights that we would be prepared to break the bank for in order to welcome onto our books. These additions may be the stuff of dreams, deals only possible in the realms of fantasy football and managerial computer games, but we dealing in the world of ‘what if’ here and that makes anything possible. Even if we were to curb our … [Read more...]

How far can Russia go at Euro 2016?

Although the Russian national team have a few more days to wait until they discover who their Euro 2016 group opponents will be, there is growing optimism that Leonid Slutskiy’s men can perform much better than they did in Brazil two years ago. The 2014 World Cup was a tournament to forget for Russia as they crashed out at the group stage without recording a single victory. Draws against South Korea and Algeria generated the most disappointment from fans and pundits who expected Fabio Capello … [Read more...]

Preview: CSKA – Wolfsburg

This Wednesday CSKA Moscow take on the German side Wolfsburg for the Champions League return fixture in Moscow. This is a must win game for the Moscow side, if they want to keep their hopes of reaching the round of 16 alive. CSKA will come into the game as slight favourites, having the home advantage and rightly so as they have put on some fine performances at home in the Champions League this season. However, after CSKA lost 2-0 at home to Krylya Sovetov and Wolfsburg trashed Werder Bremen with … [Read more...]

Interview with Krylya’s Yohan Mollo: “I came here to prove myself and play football”

This interview was originally posted on the brilliant French website Footballski.fr that specialize in anything related to East European football. They were kind enough to help us translate it into English and allow us to post it here on RussianFootballNews.  The interview was conducted on September 11 by Adrien Laëthier (@AdriLT) and translated by Quentin Guéguen (@Quentin_BZH). Big thanks to them both from the RFN editorial staff. First, can you tell us how you ended up in Samara? … [Read more...]

Can Slutsky Finish the Job?

Leonid Slutsky has enjoyed an instant impact as Russia coach, but can he now complete the job and secure qualification for Euro 2016? The CSKA Moscow coach was appointed in August on a contract until the end of the qualifying campaign after patience finally ran out with the handsomely rewarded Fabio Capello. https://www.flickr.com/photos/nazionalecalcio/15533810401/in/photostream/ (Photo by NazionaleCalcio) After just two wins from the opening six European Qualifiers, Capello was … [Read more...]

Ilsur Metshin – Rubin Kazan’s Hope of Returning to the Top

The pride of Tatarstan, Rubin Kazan, are after seven rounds of the Russian Premier League in 15th place with only three points and three scored goals. As written in a previous article on this site some fans hoped that the bad start could at least provide some good with the president Valeriy Sorokin being forced to leave the club. Those fans got what the wished for when Sorokin, together with head coach Rinat Bilyaletdinov, got his contract terminated last week after Rubin lost to … [Read more...]

Storm in the Heart of Tatarstan

The game had just finished. Bukharov scored twice, Navas was brilliant in the defense and the fans from Kazan stood up and applauded Kurban Berdyev, the coach. This sounds like a scene from 2009, when Rubin Kazan won the league. But the calendar said 2015, and much had changed since the glorious days six years ago. If anybody back then had said that Berdyev and his best players could move to Rostov, people would have taken it as nothing more than a tasteless joke. But reality is that the … [Read more...]