Spartak Moscow – Lokomotiv Moscow: Match Report and Press Conferences

Spartak Moscow - Lokomotiv Moscow 3-4 (2-0) Spartak Moscow: Selikhov - Eschenko, Tasci, Bocchetti, Kombarov - Glushakov, Pašalić (Fernando, 72), Samedov, Ananidze (Melgarejo, 46), Promes - Luiz Adriano. Lokomotiv Moscow: Guilherme - Ignatyev, Kverkvelia, Pejcinovic, Rybus (V. Denisov, 46) - I. Denisov, Barinov (Kolomeitsev, 78), Tarasov (An. Miranchuk, 46) - Al. Miranchuk, Fernandes, Farfán. Goals: Glushakov, 30 - 1:0. Luiz Adriano, 43 - 2:0. Barinov, 48 - 2:1. Al. Miranchuk, 68 - 2:2. … [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...]

Interview with Maksym Kalynychenko, Part Two: The FNL, Spartak under Oleg Romantsev, and more.

Maksym Kalynychenko, who played for Spartak Moscow from 2000-2008 sat down with Alexey Spektrowski in collaboration with our friends over at ProSpartak. Here we present Part Two of the interview in English, where the pair discusses the state of the FNL and Maksym's experiences of traveling throughout Russia, Soviet Football including the work and life of Nikolai Starostin and Oleg Romantsev's dominant Spartak Moscow side in the 1990s. Make sure to read Part One first, … [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...]

Russian Transfers – Homeward Bound

Each year we read the same nonsense with Russian transfers. XXXX is on the way to an English or German club. It's a done deal. It's in the final stages. A month ago CSKA Moscow's Golovin was about to join Arsenal. That was June 10th. Three days later the same news outlet reported Arsenal's Russian scout, Pavel Kucherov, said He is not talented enough for the European level and it’s unrealistic to discuss his transfer to a top Premier League club. Fanboys and journos went into overdrive with a … [Read more...]

Spartak Moscow – Lokomotiv Moscow Super Cup Preview

As usual, the Russian football season kicks off with the annual Super Cup game between the league champions and the cup winners. This season the game is between local rivals Spartak Moscow and Lokomotiv Moscow, and it is set to be a hotly contested affair, while the intensity of the match on the pitch should be matched by the intensity in the stands. The newly renovated Lokomotiv Stadium is the venue for the match, and all officials involved are expecting a sellout crowd of around 27,000, which … [Read more...]

Massimo Carrera – Russia’s New Champion

It is often said that it is always darkest before the dawn.  That has certainly been the case this season for Spartak Moscow. When the club was eliminated in the Third Qualifying Round of the Europa League after losing 1-0 at home to Cypriot minors AEK Larnaca on 4th August, it seemed that the Red-Whites were in for yet another chaotic and underwhelming season. This opinion was only strengthened when the owner Leonid Fedun promptly sacked head coach and club legend Dmitry Alenichev after the … [Read more...]

Does Russian Football Make Average Foreigners Look Good?

When Zenit St. Petersburg signed Yoann Mollo from Krylia Sovetov earlier this year, both Zenit fans and observers from Mollo's home nation France raised their eyebrows. The fans of Zenit thought that Mollo was not at the level of their club, only shining at Krylia as he was the focal point in their counter attacking style of play, and therefore took the lead in most of their attacking play. French observers, fans of his former club Saint Etienne, for example, struggled to believe that a player … [Read more...]

Reactions to Spartak’s First Championship in 16 Years

Spartak Moscow have won the Premier League for the first time in 16 years. On Saturday, a Quincy Promes goal secured a 1-0 win over Tom Tomsk, who were subsequently relegated, and the next day Zenit St. Petersburg fell to a shock 1-0 home defeat to Terek Grozny. The results mean that Massimo Carrera’s men are ten points clear of second-placed CSKA Moscow with just three games left. The Italian, who only took charge of Myaso in August, became the first foreign manager in Spartak’s … [Read more...]

Nikolai Starostin: My Football Years (chapter 7) – The Consistency of Mastery

Nikolai Petrovich Starostin (1902-1996) was a Soviet football player and official. He was the co-founder of Spartak Moscow, which turned into the most popular club in the USSR and Russia, and worked as its head administrator for most of his life. Starostin is considered one of the most legendary and universally revered figures of Soviet football. In 1986, he published the book ‘My Football Years’ with Lev Filatov, and even well into his eighties, he retained a keen understanding of the game, … [Read more...]