Andreas Granqvist – FC Krasnodar’s Swedish warrior looking to return home

FC Krasnodar defender Andreas Granqvist is arguably in his best form ever. In November, he was Sweden’s most important player in their 1-0 aggregate win over Italy in the World Cup qualifiers that sent a shock through the footballing world, as Italy are now set to miss their first World Cup tournament since 1958. Especially in the return 0-0 leg at the San Siro, Granqvist was outstanding, singlehandedly controlling the Swedish defence. Just over a week later, he broke Zlatan Ibrahimović’s … [Read more...]

Football Manager 2018 – Which Russian Club Should You Play With?

The latest edition of everyone's favourite football management game, Football Manager 2018, is now out. At RFN, we have a number of big fans of the series and will continue our tradition of producing our own custom update for the Russian leagues, hopefully out later this month. But when this update is out, who should you manage? Here at RFN we could justify managing every club in Russia in one way or another, but to keep this short, we will name just five potential challenges. Update: Our … [Read more...]

Ones To Watch – Ivan Ignatiev

Biography Name: Ivan Ignatiev DOB/Age: 06/01/1999 – 18 years old Club: FC Krasnodar Position: Striker Nationality: Russia   Career So Far A native of the Russian province of Krasnoyarsk, Ivan Ignatiev joined the flourishing Krasnodar academy in 2012 as a 13-year-old. As he progressed, Ignatiev started to be recognised by his country, and made his debut for Russia U15 and U16 just two years later. At every level, Ignatiev scored goals. But it was U18 level for his country where he … [Read more...]

RFPL Mid-Season Review – Part Two

As we are at the halfway stage of the 2017/18 season, it is now time to look at the season so far and how it has transpired for each RFPL member club. This mid-season review will look at the pre-season expectations for each club based on their squad and summer signings, cross-referencing with last season's performance and reputation. Then deducing whether or not each club is achieving its pre-season goals so far this season, the comparative high and low points so far for each club, expectations … [Read more...]

Why it is Time for Krasnodar to Sack Igor Shalimov

This weekend saw FC Krasnodar lose 1-0 away against Lokomotiv Moscow. Losing away to Loko isn't a catastrophe, but it was the fifth defeat in a row for the Bulls. This is the worst ever losing streak in the club's young history, and serious questions can be asked to head coach, Igor Shalimov. Shalimov’s reign as head coach has been an inconsistent one. The highs of Shalimov’s tenure have certainly been high; this 94th-minute winning goal last season against Zenit St. Petersburg is a great … [Read more...]

RFN Podcast: Krasnodar’s Rough Patch & Konstantin Sarsania’s Legacy

The Russian Football News team look at the newly promoted teams, discuss Krasnodar's rough patch, & look at the legacy left by Konstantin Sarsania. https://soundcloud.com/world-football-index/russian-football-news-konstantin-sarsanias-legacy#t=0:00 You can find the podcast on SoundCloud, or subscribe via iTunes by clicking here. You can also subscribe via iTunes by selecting – File, Subscribe to Podcast – and entering the following … [Read more...]

Europa League Preview: Crvena Zvezda – FC Krasnodar

First Playoff Round, Second Leg: Fyodor Smolov's Return? Last week’s Europa league clash between Krasnodar and Crvena Zvezda was a thriller. Featuring five goals, one improperly disallowed and scoring chances aplenty, there was no shortage of excitement at the Krasnodar Stadium. Krasnodar comes into this game with a deserved 3-2 lead after they controlled most of the game at their home arena. Though Krasnodar does have this lead heading to Serbia, Crvena’s two away goals mean that they are in a … [Read more...]

New Stadia’s Impact on Attendances in the RFPL

Low attendances in the RFPL have been the subject of much debate and despair. People have put forth many different reasons for the poor league attendance, which has hovered around 11,000 per match for the last few years. In comparison, the Bundesliga averages 41,000 per match, and the English Premier League averages 35,000 per match. Some say that the quality of the league is too low, while others, including then-Sbornaya coach Leonid Slutsky, claim that Russia is simply not a footballing … [Read more...]

Europa League Preview: FC Krasndar – Crzena Zvezda

First Playoff Round, First Leg: Bulls Bullish or Red Star Gleaming? Krasnodar enters this week’s Europa League match against Serbian side Crvena Zvezda in some spotty form. As of late, they have drawn against two potential relegation candidates in the RFPL. Between these disappointing draws came a last gasp victory over FC Akhmat, who is expected to challenge for European places this year. On top of their questionable form, injury concerns abound for Krasnodar, with some newcomers potentially … [Read more...]

Reforming the Trans-Siberian Football League

The Football National League is the biggest football league in the world according to geographic area, covering over 4,500 miles as-the-crow-flies and even crosses eight time zones. Due to the size of the league and other problems synonymous with Russian football such as fiscal instability, political corruption and systemic mismanagement, many clubs - as previously explored - do not face a race to thrive, but a battle to survive. READ PART ONE: Problems with the Trans-Siberian Football … [Read more...]