Rubin Kazan 2009 – Where are they now?

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In 2009 Rubin Kazan did the impossible. The club from Tatarstan won its second Russian championship in a row and underlined that the football capitals of Moscow and St. Petersburg had gotten a new challenger.

When Rubin won the league the year before, it was seen as unlikely that they could stay on top, but they did just that. Rubin won the league with a staggering gap of eight points down to Spartak Moscow in second place. The squad of 2009 included several club legends, but how did the eleven players, who secured the championship with a 0-0 against Zenit St. Petersburg, fare since being crowned champions?

Sergey Ryzhikov

In between the sticks, that day was Sergey Rhyzikov. The 37-year-old began his career with Salyut-Energia Belgorod before signing for Saturn Ramenskoye in 2002. He spent two years with the club before eventually signing for Anzhi Makhachkala. In 2006 the goalkeeper signed for Lokomotiv Moscow, but he found game time hard to come by. As a result of this, he eventually signed for Rubin Kazan. He won the league in his first two seasons for the club, and he won the Super Cup in 2010. The shot-stopper is still playing for Rubin Kazan and made 29 appearances last year as the club came ninth in the league. Ryzhikov made one appearance for the Russian national team in March 2011, and he was included in the 2014 World Cup squad though he didn’t make an outing.

César Navas

The Spanish central defender played 28 games in 2009 and was a crucial part of the championship win. Before moving to Russia, he played 108 games for Real Madrid B, but couldn’t find a way into the Madrid side. He signed for Malaga in 2003, and in total made 63 appearances for the Spanish side. Malaga was relegated in his second season with the club, and after one season in the Second tier, he moved to Racing Santander to play football in Spain’s top tier. In 2009 Navas signed for Rubin Kazan for €2 million. Like Ryzhikov, Navas won the league in his first season, and he won the 2011-12 Russian Cup with Rubin Kazan. In 2015 Navas signed for Rostov before re-signing for Rubin Kazan in 2017. Navas has represented Spain at U-17 and U-18 level, but the 37-year-old hasn’t ever played for the senior side.

Vitaly Kaleshin

The right-back played 18 league games as Rubin Kazan steamrolled the Premier League. He started his career with FC Kuban-2, the farm club of Kuban Krasnodar, and spent time in Moldova before signing for FC Moscow in 2008. The 37-year-old signed for Rubin Kazan in 2009 and won the league in his first season. He spent four years at the club, but in 2013 he signed for FC Krasnodar where he retired last season.

Cristian Ansaldi

The Argentine started his career with Newell’s Old Boys. After three years with the club, he signed for Rubin Kazan. The defender won the league in his first two seasons with the club and made 128 outings. While he was at Rubin he attracted the interest of English giants Liverpool, but nothing ever materialized. The Argentinian international instead signed for Zenit St. Petersburg in 2013, where he fought with Domenico Criscito over a spot in the starting line-up. Ansaldi lost the battle and was eventually sent on loan to first Atletico Madrid and later Genoa. In 2016, he signed for Inter Milan, where he made 21 appearances in his first season but was sent out on loan to Torino in August 2017. Since being loaned out to Torino he has made six appearances for the Serie A side.

Roman Sharonov

Sharonov played 28 games in the 2009 season and got a yellow card in the game against Zenit. The now 41-year-old joined the club in 1999 from Metallurg Krasnoyarsk and spent five years at the club. He rejoined Rubin Kazan in 2008 from Shinnik Yaroslavl. Sharonov spent six years at the club in his second spell and he has been managing Rubin Kazan’s Under-21 side since 2017.

Gökdeniz Karadeniz

The Turkish international joined Rubin from Trabzonspor in 2008. Karadeniz has become somewhat of a club legend. He has been named in the top 50 most famous personalities living in Kazan, and he also has a tattoo of the club on his arm. In an interview with Fifa.com, he said; ‘Rubin signifies the most successful period of my career, and I’m not only a player but a life-long fan.’ Karadeniz played a big part in Rubin securing back to back titles, and he had a big influence in their European campaign. He scored the goal that beat Barcelona at the Nou Camp for the Russian side which will write him into the history books. The 5ft 6in winger still plays for Rubin Kazan and has so far scored 57 goals in 311 appearances. Karadeniz was part of the Turkey squad which finished third in the European Championships in 2008.

READ MORE: Barcelona 1-2 Rubin Kazan – The Greatest Giant Killing in European History?

Sergey Semak

Semak spent time at CSKA Moscow and Paris Saint Germain before signing for Rubin Kazan in 2008. Semak captained the side to back to back title wins and eventually left for Zenit in 2010. He spent three years at Zenit before hanging up his boots at the age of 36. Semak made his international debut in 1997 and took part in the 2002 FIFA World Cup in South Korea and Japan. Semak represented Russia on 65 occasions. He managed Zenit in 2014 for two games after the sacking Luciano Spalletti. Semak is now coaching Ufa and is seen as one of Russia’s most promising coaches.

READ MORE: Sergey Semak – Russia’s Greatest Leader

Aleksandr Ryanzantsev

Ryanzantsev started his career with FC Moscow and joined Rubin Kazan in 2006. At Rubin Kazan, he won the following: RFPL, Super Cup and the Russian Cup. He also scored Rubin’s first goal against Barcelona in the famous 2-1 win at the Nou Camp. While he was at Rubin, Ryanzantsev drummed up interest from Everton. It was reported that he would sign for The Toffees for £3 million. However, like many of this team, Ryanzantsev joined Zenit in 2014. He made his debut for Russia against Cameroon, and he went on to represent Russia another four times. Ryazantsev never managed to break through at Zenit though, and he has spent the past seasons on loan at first FC Ural and now Amkar Perm.

Christian Noboa

Noboa started his career with Emelec in Ecuador and signed for Rubin Kazan in 2007. The Ecuador international played 22 games as Rubin Kazan won the title in 2009. He said in an interview that he ‘struggled to adapt at first’, but after he hit the ground running and bagged 13 goals in his last two seasons with Rubin. In 2011 the midfielder signed for Dinamo Moscow and spent four seasons at the club. Noboa is now playing for Zenit and has so far made two appearances this season. Noboa made his international debut against Brazil in a 2010 World Cup qualifier. He scored in the game and has bagged a further four goals for Ecuador.

Alan Kasaev

The 31-year-old started his career with Titan Reutov. He had spells at Zenit and Kuban Krasnodar before signing for Rubin Kazan in 2009. Kasaev played ten games that season for Rubin and managed to notch one goal. He stayed with the club for five years and altogether scored twelve goals for the club. He joined Lokomotiv Moscow in 2014 after five years with Rubin where he won a championship, a cup and two Super Cups. The winger has played two games so far, this season as Lokomotiv Moscow look to win the RFPL title for the first time in eight years.

Aleksandr Bukharov

The Russian international bagged himself 16 goals in the 2009 season as Rubin Kazan ran away with the Premier League title. He started his career with Krasnodar-2000 and joined Rubin in 2005. He struggled to make an impact in his first four seasons, but he hit the ground running in 2009 as he finished as the club’s top scorer. He signed for Zenit in 2011 where he scored eleven goals in 54 appearances and was considered an exorbitant flop. This led to Bukharov leaving the club in 2014 when his contract expired, and like many other former Rubin players, he joined Rostov on a free transfer. Despite making nine outings for Russia, he has only managed to score one goal. The striker’s only international goal came against Belgium, as his last-gasp earned Russia a draw against Belgium in March 2017. That was his first call-up for six years.

Author: Rajan Hothi

I’m a Swindon Town fan, but I’ve always been intrigued in the Russian League. I have a soft spot for Rubin Kazan and want to help give people a side of Russian Football which they’ve never seen before.

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