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Russian league

Joe Concacaf

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quote:Originally posted by Joe Concacaf

what teams are in the Russian first division this year? I'm too lazy to look it up myself.



Current Table:

 1.Lokomotiv Moskva           15   8  7  0  20- 3  31

 2.Spartak Moskva             13   7  3  3  24-13  24

 3.Rubin Kazan                13   6  4  3  16-14  22

 4.CSKA Moskva                11   6  3  2  18- 5  21

 5.FK Moskva                  12   5  5  2  13- 6  20

 6.Zenit Sankt-Peterburg      14   5  5  4  19-14  20

 7.Dinamo Moskva              13   6  1  6  14-20  19

 8.Krylya Sovetov Samara      14   4  6  4  13-16  18

 9.Torpedo Moskva             12   4  4  4  14-10  16

10.Shinnik Yaroslavl          13   3  7  3  10-11  16

11.Saturn Moskovskaya Oblast  13   4  3  6   9- 9  15

12.Amkar Perm                 13   2  8  3  10-14  14

13.Alania Vladikavkaz         13   3  3  7   9-21  12

14.Tom Tomsk                  13   2  5  6   8-15  11  [+]


15.Terek Groznyi              13   2  3  8   8-20   9  [+]

16.FK Rostov                  13   2  3  8   7-21   9


rsssf, "current domestic" section is a good basic site to look at to keep tabs on the various leagues if you don't have a fetish for real up-to-date results...perfect for a La-Zy-Boy like you!


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Guest HamiltonSteelers

It is sad to see that Moscow is so badly underrepresented in the top flight. Chin up, you'll get there soon.

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As a fan of Russian soccer, the biggest problem is that Moscow teams have more money than fans (most Russian corporations are headquartered in Moscow and sponsor teams as a matter of prestige) and the other teams have more fans than money. Thus only the Moscow teams (all 6 of them plus Saturn which is about 30 miles away) and Zenit in St. Petersberg are really competitive for the title with maybe one outsider (Samara recently but they now have financial problems). I estimate the Russian league as 6th or 7th best in Europe currently as the lower table teams are still competitive even if they don't have much chance at the title. The problem is that if you are charging $2 to $3 entry that this does not provide much revenue and sponsor revenue is thus the key. In Leipzig I would pay $15 to see 3rd or 4th division soccer but in Russia $2 to see far higher level. Good for me but not for team revenues as the team pays its players in hard currency just like every other Euroean league. My team Shinnik has not had a shirt sponsor for two years but has double the attendence of most Moscow teams. Shinnik usually starts slow and finishes 7th or 8th. They are a very smart club and usually have some young future Russian national team players (who will transfer to Moscow clubs), national team players form other eastern European countries (Poland, Slovakia, Georgia, Lithuania) and players from lesser South Amnerican countries as well as a few Russian veterans past their prime. Shinnik's level is probably at about that of a lower table Bundesliga team that usually manages to avoid relegation but might go down in an off year. Unlike may European leagues the Russian league is quite competitive throughout the table with none of the mismatches seen in Belgium, Holland, Czech Republic etc. but nevertheless with only the Moscow teams and Zenit in the hunt for the title.

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quote:Originally posted by argh1

Okay, I can't decide if you're Mr. Smart Arse or Mr. Pain in the Arse with all these little pics or.......is the Tiquela way to good in Méheeco Signor [:P]

Me. No, I'm ...


My psychiatrist has advised me to adopt a coping mechanism if I'm going to remain a moderator here.:D

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I have to differ with you Sigma on the quality of the Czech league. I have seen some matches living in nearby Germany and after the first couple of teams the level is quite poor. Maybe there is some variation in which teams are strong from year to year but there is not very high quality throughout the table. Just last year I saw Teplice play Shinnik in the Intertoto and Shinnik won both the away and home legs by several goals even though it was the Shinnik reserve team that played both matches.

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quote:Originally posted by HamiltonSteelers

It is sad to see that Moscow is so badly underrepresented in the top flight. Chin up, you'll get there soon.

It seems the league is a mixture of a bunch of Moscow teams and a bunch of teams in far-flung locations like Tomsk, Samara, Perm (no clue where Perm is) and Grozny (of all places). But I'm guessing Grozny aren't playing any home matches in Grozny.

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Terek Grozny plays in another city in Russia, Pyatigorsk, which is near to but not in Chechnya. Info on the team and a picture of the present state of the Grozny stadium can be seen on this thread: http://thevoyageurs.com/forum/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=3279

Grozny is in the Premier league because they receive support from the Russian authorities. In other words they are a bit of a propaganda tool as the Russian authorities hope that they will receive support of Chechnyans and make them amenable to remaining in Russia. This is not open funding but obviously people in power have a lot of influence in arranging funding (kind of like our sponsorship scandal) from corporate sponsors. This is actually quite a good tactic and certainly better than killing people so hopefully it will create some goodwill. Most of the other Russian soccer and hockey teams are sponsored by a big Russian corporation and those outside Moscow usually have a link to the industry that is strong in that city. If you think people in Canada hate Toronto you should see how much the Russians hate Moscow and for local businessmen it is a matter of pride to beat the Moscovites at sport. However, the really big money in Russia is funnelled to Moscow (a big part of the reason it is so hated) and it is still hard for teams to raise the type of money the Russian teams have even if they are sponsored by the wealthy local oil company.

As far as the location of the Russian teams, they are all in the European part of Russia (which is still quite big) except for newly promoted Tomsk which is in Siberia though central Siberia not the far east. In the second division there is a team in Vladivostok which would be a nearer match for the Whitecaps than the Moscow teams or probably Montreal for that matter. Luckily travel costs in Russia are relatively cheap but jet lag must be a killer as Russia even after losing the other Soviet Republics is still 1.7 times larger than Canada and has many more time zones. The Premier league has 6 teams in Moscow, one 30 km away and two Shinnik and Zenit within 500 km. The rest are mostly south east of Moscow several thousand kilometers away. The distance does make the crowd atmosphere a bit disappointing sometimes as not many people want to travel 2 or 3000 kms for a game particularly on a Russian salary so the guest block has only the handful of people living in that city from the city playing them. At Shinnik the atmosphere is always great when we play a big Moscow team and they bring several thousand fans but it is less interesting when we play Samara for example and there are 10 people in the guest block although a few teams do bring one or two fan buses with them.

Regarding the Czech league, there are quite a few of the better players who transfer to Russia as do many others from Eastern European countries. The Czech players from the lower 1st division teams often transfer to 3rd division in Germany which still pays better than the Czech teams. It is often quite informative of league level to see where players are transferring. At the moment most of the better Eastern European players who aren't playing in the west are in the Russian league. I am not saying the Czech league is total crap, the lower table teams in their first division might be comparable to a poor 2nd Bundesliga team which is still better than what we have in Canada but it makes for uneven competition against the 2 or 3 top teams in the league and doesn't make it rank among the top leagues in Europe even if Sparta gets them a fair number of UEFA points in European competition. I think the league would improve a lot if they joined with the Slovakian league like in former times but I guess this would be politically sensitive. In fact, I think European soccer would be far more interesting if a few countries could merge their leagues (Scandanavia, Austria and Switzerland). More countries could keep their talent at home, big cities like Stockholm and Vienna would have teams and opposition worthy of them and it would eleiminate the numerous leagues with two good teams that always win against crappy opposition.

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  • 2 months later...

Chechen football stars cry foul

By Steve Rosenberg

BBC correspondent in Moscow

Fallen heroes: Luck runs out for Terek Grozny (in white)

When a football team is languishing at the bottom of the table, it normally considers changing its tactics.

Or changing its players. Or simply firing the manager.

But not Terek Grozny. The club from Chechnya, which is currently sixteenth out of 16 in the Russian Premier league, is battling to avoid relegation... by playing politics.

It has written to President Vladimir Putin to cry foul about Russian referees. The letter lists all the Terek goals disallowed in recent matches, and all the free kicks and penalties given against the team.

It calls on the Mr Putin to intervene and blow the whistle on what the club believes is a concerted campaign against it.

"We don't deserve to be bottom," says the letter. "We want honest football and objective refereeing!"

"These referees aren't human - they're beasts!"

Powerful lobby

Terek's president and Chechnya's Vice Premier Ramzan Kadyrov complained to me by telephone from Grozny.

"For the last twelve years the Chechen people have been abused, we won't let this happen any more. That's why we've written to the president. He's the fairest man in Russia - he'll find out why there's a campaign against the club."

It is a far cry from last season - when Terek came from nowhere to win the Russian Cup.

That triumph provided a rare good news story from the volatile North Caucasus - a Russian region racked by conflict. And it earned the team an invitation to the Kremlin to meet Vladimir Putin.

"Sending this letter is a very impulsive step," Russian sports journalist Kirill Kiknadze told me.

"It's their southern temperament showing through. After getting into the Premier league, Terek is determined to remain part of Russia's footballing elite and to achieve that it'll break down every wall in its way."

Political football

But will the Kremlin come running to the defence of a soccer team?

Well, it has happened before. In 1939 the head of the Soviet secret police, Lavrenti Beria, ordered a replay of a cup semi-final after one of his organisation's teams, Dinamo Tbilisi, lost the match.

And in 1967, a government decree ensured that the Leningrad-based club Zenit remained in the top league. Relegation would have been embarrassing, since at the time the USSR was celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Bolshevik Revolution, which had started in Leningrad.

Terek's president Ramzan Kadyrov has close ties to the Kremlin. His father Akhmad was Chechnya's pro-Moscow leader, until his assassination by rebels last year.

The Kadyrov clan continues to play a key role in cementing Moscow's rule in Chechnya. Terek may be hoping that this support will help get the Kremlin on its side.

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