Reforming the Trans-Siberian Football League, Part Two: The Universal Solution

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...]

The Return of Lokomotiv’s Prodigal Son, Arshak Koryan

When a Russian player joins a European club, it always makes headlines. At the moment, there's only a handful of Russians playing in West European leagues, and none of them is successful in the biggest ones, although injury-plagued Denis Cheryshev has had his moments, which causes a lot of pain in the football proud nation that wants to see its players succeed like in the past. That is also why it is considered a failure from both media and fans when a Russian player moves abroad only to … [Read more...]

RFPL 2017/2018 – Who Has the Best Kit?

SKA-Khabarovsk Premier Liga newcomers, like some other teams, decided not to bother and use last year's kits. They probably figured that nobody saw it last season anyway, as the coverage of the FNL is almost criminally low. The kit itself is nothing special, but there is nothing to criticize either. I personally like their massive badge, which looks appropriate on this empty T-shirt. FC Tosno The club from the Leningrad Oblast, founded in 2013, still hasn't built its own identity. … [Read more...]

Season Preview: Lokomotiv Moscow

The Super Cup, which was lost 2-1 to Spartak Moscow after extra time, brought to light both the strengths and weaknesses of Lokomotiv Moscow. On the one hand, head coach Yuri Semin can count on a team which never gives up and on a reliable defensive line; on the other hand, it's clear that the Railwaymen lacks quality in several positions and also need a deeper bench. All of this was evident last season as well, when despite lifting the Russian Cup, Loko performed very badly in the league, and … [Read more...]

Gerkus and Semin Have High Hopes for Tough Second Season

When Ilya Gerkus replaced the highly-criticized Olga Smorodskaya as president of Lokomotiv Moscow last summer, there were quite big expectations. After years of turmoil and poor results, the club finally seemed to be on the right track back towards the top of Russian football. A season later, it's time to draw conclusions. All in all, it hasn't been that bad. Lokomotiv won the cup and thus qualified for the Europa League group stage, which was the goal before the season, legendary midfielder … [Read more...]

RFPL Winter Transfer Window – Team by Team Summary Part 2

Lokomotiv Moscow Lokomotiv have had one of the better windows in the league. The main event for them was keeping hold of wonderkid Aleksey Miranchuk. For the whole window, a saga of will he, won’t he rumours were in the press as Rubin Kazan sniffed around. In the end, Lokomotiv’s high asking price put off Rubin, who will try to pick up the youngster for free in the summer. However, Loko did lose club legend Aleksandr Samedov to city rivals Spartak, while clearing out some deadweight in Ezekiel … [Read more...]

Solomon Kverkvelia – From Liverpool Target to Lokomotiv

A year ago, the name of Rubin Kazan’s Solomon Kverkvelia was on everybody’s libs. The Georgian central defender was in the middle of yet another brilliant season for Rubin, his third as a crucial part of the team. He delivered two stellar performances against Liverpool in the Europa League, especially during the 1-1 draw at Anfield, and it was no surprise when Kverkvelia himself, in an interview with Georgian sports site Sportall.ge, revealed that Borussia Dortmund, Sevilla, Napoli and a number … [Read more...]

Why I’m Glad Steven Caulker Didn’t Join Lokomotiv Moscow

My mum always tells me that "everything happens for a reason", and she's right. We shouldn't be too worried about what goes on in our everyday lives. Joys and disappointments are both part of us. For Lokomotiv Moscow fans, the transfer of Steven Caulker represented both the joys and disappointments. Starting with the joy of signing a well-known defender, it ended up as a disappointment when the deal collapsed. However, behind this, there's something which is worth being analyzed. When it … [Read more...]

Aleksey Miranchuk and The Unknown Truth

Truth has always been elusive, but one thing is certain: the higher up you go, the harder it gets to find it. That is the case of the Trump election, Area 51's secrets or even more specifically of the Aleksey Miranchuk saga at Lokomotiv. The contract of the 21-year-old attacking midfielder runs out at the end of 2017 and nothing is clear at the moment. On the one hand, the Railwaymen are trying to persuade him to extend the deal on the best terms. On the other hand, all the best Russian … [Read more...]

Ones to Watch – Aleksey Miranchuk

Biography Name: Aleksey Miranchuk DOB/Age: 17/10/1995 – 21 years old Club: FC Lokomotiv Moscow Position: Attacking midfielder Nationality: Russia Career so far: Born in Slavyansk-na-Kubani in Krasnodar Krai in southern Russia, Aleksey Miranchuk took his first steps in football in Olimp, the local school academy based in Krasnodar, around an hour and a half by car from his birth city, together with his twin brother Anton. After a few years, the Miranchuks caught the attention of the … [Read more...]