The Night of Ilshat Faizulin in the Camp Nou

That one night in the Camp Nou probably was the pinnacle of his career. On 4th November 1992, Ilshat Faizulin was, to a certain extent, the hero of the night for a mighty CSKA Moscow that outclassed the all-powerful FC Barcelona in Catalunya. Faizulin contributed with two assists in that historic 3-2 win and his overall performance was absolutely brilliant. No one expected much from CSKA Moscow that night. A 1-1 draw in the Russian capital two weeks earlier had left the Armeitsy in a very … [Read more...]

RFN Friday Quiz: Football in Moscow

It is Friday once again, and as usual that means that you get the opportunity to prove just how much, or little, you know about Russian football. With the CSKA - Spartak Derby coming this weekend, the focus of this quiz is on football in the capital of Russia. But enough talk, it is time to test your knowledge. Let us know your score, either by tweeting us or simply comment on this post.   … [Read more...]

Irish solution for a Russian problem – Russian League Realignment

I'll be slaughtered by friends at home over this, though I happen to think the 10 team Irish Premier Division is a decent idea. Stay with me. I think it's a good idea as we don't have enough talent or money to go around. We don't have enough fans to go around. I don't want to see a closed off League, though what happens with the First Division is equally as important to me. Yet in order to get football moving in Ireland, bringing in crowds, sponsors and players, a 10 team division is the best … [Read more...]

Five Stars With a Past in Russian Football

Since the formation of the Russian Football Premier League in 1992, a long range of quality players have amazed fans around the country. However, with so many players coming through the ranks, some more memorable than others, others more profitable for bookmakers, it is easy to forget a couple, especially for people who don't follow the league closely. Therefore, we have dived into the history books to find five superstars you might not know played in Russia at some point in their … [Read more...]

Keisuke Honda – The Emperor Who Lost his Way

Ever since Japan participated in their first World Cup in 1998, the Land of the Rising Sun has produced a number of excellent footballers. One of them, Keisuke Honda, made a name for himself in Russia, developing from a promising, yet unknown talent, into a world class player, able to fight with the big boys. However, as brilliant he was on the pitch, equally challenging he was off the pitch, where a cynical approach to business and an impeccable belief in own abilities made him leave the club … [Read more...]

Vitinho and Olanare – The Lost Sons are Back to Save CSKA’s Season

CSKA Moscow has been known for having great strikers this millennium. From Vagner Love to Ivica Olic, from Jo to Seydou Doumbia, the Army Men have been blessed up front with some of the strongest legionnaires in the history of the Russian Football Premier League, but this season has been different. After selling Ahmed Musa to Leicester in the summer, the Red-Blues went into the season with Lacina Traoré, Carlos Strandberg and Fyodor Chalov as the striking options, and the results have … [Read more...]

The Russian Revolution at Sarrià

The 1991-92 campaign certainly causes mixed feelings to RCD Espanyol supporters. The departure of Head Coach Luís Aragonés at the end of the previous season had left “Los Pericos” adrift in their own sea of madness and the club’s board ended up deciding to bring in Ljubomir Petrovic as his replacement. “Ljupko” Petrovic arrived in Spain with an European Cup in his trophy cabinet after leading FK Crvena Zvezda (Red Star Belgrade) to glory a few months before in Bari (Italy) against the … [Read more...]

Seven Years with Leonid Slutsky

When Valery Gazzaev left CSKA Moscow at the end of 2008, the Army Men embarked upon the impossible task of replacing one of Russian football’s most successful coaches. Eventually they picked Brazilian legend Zico, who arrived in Moscow under high of expectations. Despite winning both the Cup and the Super Cup, the Brazilian only lasted nine months in Moscow, before he left the club after a series of poor results, including a cup exit to FNL side FC Ural. To replace Zico, CSKA opted for another … [Read more...]

Mid-Season Review: Lokomotiv Moscow

The season began with some unexpected shocks. Head coach Igor Cherevchenko resigned before it was announced that club’s president Olga Smorodskaya and her team were leaving Lokomotiv. The most famous women in Russian football was replaced by Ilya Gerkus, former Zenit’s development director and ex–CEO of Liga–TV. Gerkus hired Igor Korneev, who also worked for Zenit, as sporting director, while Lokomotiv’s legendary coach Yuri Semin returned to the club for the fourth time to take over after … [Read more...]

RFN Podcast: Slutsky Leaves CSKA, Doping Scandal and Can Spartak Win The Title?

Host Thomas Giles is joined by regular guests Toke Theilade and Andrew Flint to talk about the latest news from the world of Russian football. After manager Leonid Slutsky left his role as CSKA Moscow boss, the trio discuss what is next for both Slutsky and CSKA. They then talk about the latest doping allegations to hit Russian sport and how it relates to football in Russia before asking whether current league leaders Spartak Moscow can finally win the title after a 16 year … [Read more...]