Russian Football Premier League

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Russian Football Premier League (RFPL)
Country Russia
Founded2001; 13 years ago (2001)
Number of teams16
Levels on pyramid1
Relegation toNational Football League
Domestic cup(s)Russian Cup
International cup(s)Champions League
Europa League
Current championsCSKA Moscow
(2012–13 season)
Most championshipsSpartak Moscow (9 titles)*
TV partnersNTV (1st pick), Our Football
2013–14 Russian Premier League
* Incl. Rus. Top League and Rus. Top Division titles
  (Redirected from Russian Premier League)
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Russian Football Premier League (RFPL)
Country Russia
Founded2001; 13 years ago (2001)
Number of teams16
Levels on pyramid1
Relegation toNational Football League
Domestic cup(s)Russian Cup
International cup(s)Champions League
Europa League
Current championsCSKA Moscow
(2012–13 season)
Most championshipsSpartak Moscow (9 titles)*
TV partnersNTV (1st pick), Our Football
2013–14 Russian Premier League
* Incl. Rus. Top League and Rus. Top Division titles

The Russian Football Premier League (Russian: Чемпионат России по футболу), currently called SOGAZ Russian Football Championship (Russian: СОГАЗ — Чемпионат России по футболу), is the top division in Russian football. The competition is administered by the Russian football Premier-League (Russian: Российская футбольная Премьер-Лига). There are 16 teams in the competition. The league has two Champions League qualifying spots given to the top two teams at the end of the season and three Europa League spots are allocated to the third, fourth and fifth teams. The last two teams are relegated to the National League Championship at the end of the season. The Russian Premier League was established in 2001 and succeeded the Top Division. The Top Division was run by the Professional Football League of Russia. Creation of the Premier League is considered to give the clubs a greater degree of independence.

CSKA Moscow is the current Russian Premier League champion.


After the break-up of the Soviet Union, starting in 1992, each former Soviet republic organized an independent national championship. In Russia, the six Russian teams who had played in the Soviet Top League in 1991 (CSKA Moscow, Spartak Moscow, Torpedo Moscow, Dynamo Moscow, Spartak Vladikavkaz, and Lokomotiv Moscow) were supplemented with 14 teams from lower divisions to form a 20-team Russian Top Division. The Top Division was further divided into two groups to reduce the total number of matches. The number of teams in the Top Division was gradually reduced to 18 in 1993 and 16 in 1994. Since then, the Russian Top Division (and subsequently the Premier League) has consisted of 16 teams, except for a short-lived experiment with having two more teams in 1996 and 1997.

Spartak Moscow was the dominant force in the Top Division, winning nine of the first ten titles. Spartak-Alania Vladikavkaz was the only team which managed to break Spartak's dominance, winning the Top Division title in 1995.

Lokomotiv Moscow have won the title twice, and CSKA Moscow four times.

In 2007, Zenit St. Petersburg climbed to the top, winning the title for the first time in their history in Russian professional football; they had also won a Soviet title in 1984. 2008 brought the pinnacle of the rise of Rubin Kazan, a club entirely new to the Russian top flight, as it had never even competed in the Soviet Top League.


Russian Premier League match between Zenit and Dynamo (the last Zenit match at the Kirov Stadium, stadium had been already partially demolished.)

Teams in the Russian Premier League play each other twice, once at home and once away, for a total of 30 matches. Three points are awarded for a win, one for a draw, and none for a loss. If teams are level on points, the tie-breakers are the number of wins, then the goal difference, followed by several other factors. If the teams are tied for the first position, the tie-breakers are the number of wins, then head-to-head results. If the teams tied for the first place cannot be separated by these tie-breakers, a championship play-off is ordered.

Russian Premier League match between Lokomotiv and Spartak at the Lokomotiv Stadium

As of 2010, the champions and the runners-up qualify for the UEFA Champions League group stage. The third-placed team qualifies for the Champions League second qualifying round. The fourth- and fifth-place teams qualify for the UEFA Europa League. The bottom two teams are relegated to the First Division (renamed the National Football League starting in 2011).

Unlike most other European football leagues, the league traditionally ran in summer, from March to November, to avoid playing games in the cold and snowy weather in winter. This was altered ahead of the 2012–13 season, with the league planning to run the season from autumn to spring. The transitional season of the competition began in early 2011 and continued until summer of 2012. After the 16 Premier League teams played each other twice over the course of the 2011 calendar year, they were split into two groups of eight, and the teams played other teams in their groups two more times for a total of 44 games (30 in 2011 and 14 in 2012). Those two groups were contested in spring 2012, with the top eight clubs playing for the title and European places. The other sides vied to avoid relegation: the bottom two went down while the next two played off against the sides third and fourth in the National Football League, with the two losers being relegated (or denied promotion).[1] Under the current autumn-spring calendar, the league takes a three-month winter break from mid-December until mid-March.

Youth championship[edit]

The Youth championship (Russian: Молодежное первенство), also known as Youth teams championship (Russian: Первенство молодёжных команд), Reserve team tournament (Russian: Турнир среди дублирующих составов) or Reserves tournament (Russian: Турнир дублёров), full name Youth football championship of Russia among teams of clubs of the Premier League (Russian: Молодёжное Первенство России по футболу среди команд клубов Премьер-Лиги), is a league that runs in parallel to the Russian Premier League and includes the youth or reserve teams of the Russian Premier League teams. The number of players a team can have on the pitch at a time that are over 21 years of age or without a Russian citizenship is limited. 16 teams participate in the league. Matches are commonly played a day before the match of the senior teams of the respective teams. All of the Russian Premier League teams are obliged to have a youth team that would participate in the Youth championship. The teams that are promoted from the National Football League and do not have a youth team must create one. The teams in the league are not relegated based on their final league position, but on the league position of their respective clubs' senior teams.

It has to be noted however that some Premier League clubs have three teams. Apart from the senior team and the team that plays in the Youth championship a team might have another senior team that plays in a lower division of Russian football and serves as the farm team for the main team. Some examples include Lokomotiv-2, and Rubin-2, playing in the Russian Second Division. Also of note is that for example Lokomotiv-2 has a youth team of its own, participating in the Amateur Football League, giving Lokomotiv a total of 4 teams in the Russian football league.

Youth Champions since 2001[edit]

Current clubs[edit]

The following teams are confirmed to compete in the 2013–14 season:

Champions and top scorers[edit]

SeasonChampionRunner-upThird placeTop scorer
1992*Spartak MoscowAlania VladikavkazDynamo MoscowAzerbaijan Vali Gasimov (Dinamo Moscow, 16 goals - 1-8 place)
Russia Yuri Matveyev (Uralmash, 20 goals - 9-20 place)
1993*Spartak Moscow (2)Rotor VolgogradDynamo MoscowRussia Victor Panchenko (KamAZ Naberezhnye Chelny, 21 goals)
1994*Spartak Moscow (3)Dynamo MoscowLokomotiv MoscowRussia Igor Simutenkov (Dinamo Moscow, 21 goals)
1995*Alania VladikavkazLokomotiv MoscowSpartak MoscowRussia Oleg Veretennikov (Rotor Volgograd, 25 goals)
1996*Spartak Moscow (4)Alania VladikavkazRotor VolgogradRussia Aleksandr Maslov (Rostselmash, 23 goals)
1997*Spartak Moscow (5)Rotor VolgogradDynamo MoscowRussia Oleg Veretennikov (Rotor Volgograd, 22 goals)
1998**Spartak Moscow (6)CSKA MoscowLokomotiv MoscowRussia Oleg Veretennikov (Rotor Volgograd, 22 goals)
1999**Spartak Moscow (7)Lokomotiv MoscowCSKA MoscowGeorgia (country) Georgi Demetradze (Alania Vladikavkaz, 21 goals)
2000**Spartak Moscow (8)Lokomotiv MoscowTorpedo MoscowRussia Dmitri Loskov (Lokomotiv Moscow, 18 goals)
2001**Spartak Moscow (9)Lokomotiv MoscowZenit Saint PetersburgRussia Dmitri Vyazmikin (Torpedo Moscow, 18 goals)
2002Lokomotiv MoscowCSKA MoscowSpartak MoscowRussia Rolan Gusev (CSKA Moscow, 15 goals)
Russia Dmitri Kirichenko (CSKA Moscow, 15 goals)
2003CSKA MoscowZenit Saint PetersburgRubin KazanRussia Dmitri Loskov (Lokomotiv Moscow, 14 goals)
2004Lokomotiv Moscow (2)CSKA MoscowKrylia Sovetov SamaraRussia Aleksandr Kerzhakov (Zenit St. Petersburg, 18 goals)
2005CSKA Moscow (2)Spartak MoscowLokomotiv MoscowRussia Dmitri Kirichenko (FC Moscow, 14 goals)
2006CSKA Moscow (3)Spartak MoscowLokomotiv MoscowRussia Roman Pavlyuchenko (Spartak Moscow, 18 goals)
2007Zenit Saint PetersburgSpartak MoscowCSKA MoscowRussia Roman Pavlyuchenko (Spartak Moscow, 14 goals)
Russia Roman Adamov (FC Moscow, 14 goals)
2008Rubin KazanCSKA MoscowDynamo MoscowBrazil Vágner Love (CSKA Moscow, 20 goals)
2009Rubin Kazan (2)Spartak MoscowZenit Saint PetersburgBrazil Welliton (Spartak Moscow, 21 goals)
2010Zenit Saint Petersburg (2)CSKA MoscowRubin KazanBrazil Welliton (Spartak Moscow, 19 goals)
2011–12Zenit Saint Petersburg (3)Spartak MoscowCSKA MoscowIvory Coast Seydou Doumbia (CSKA Moscow, 28 goals)
2012–13CSKA Moscow (4)Zenit Saint PetersburgAnzhi MakhachkalaArmenia Yura Movsisyan (FC Krasnodar/Spartak Moscow, 13 goals)
Brazil Wánderson do Carmo (FC Krasnodar, 13 goals)
* The league was named Top League
** The league was named Top Division
Zenit players celebrating their 2007 triumph
ClubWinnersRunners-UpThird placeYears won
Spartak Moscow
1992, 1993, 1994, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001
CSKA Moscow
2003, 2005, 2006, 2012–13
Zenit St. Petersburg
2007, 2010, 2011–12
Lokomotiv Moscow
2002, 2004
Rubin Kazan
2008, 2009
Alania Vladikavkaz
Rotor Volgograd
Dynamo Moscow
Torpedo Moscow
Krylia Sovetov Samara
Anzhi Makhachkala

UEFA Ranking[edit]

All-time table[edit]

As of 28 May 2013
1Spartak Moscow2116533641641251242-6731256952
2Lokomotiv Moscow211653323180150967-6101149244
3CSKA Moscow2116533291601641034-6381147453
4Dynamo Moscow211652273187192921-7451006-14
5Zenit Saint Petersburg182562260164138853-580944322
6Krylya Sovetov Samara211656212178266713-852814--1
7Torpedo Moscow1512006462182131149597-553677--1
8FC Rostov193592158174260614-830648---
9Alania Vladikavkaz1632012/13489179109201630-66364612-
10Rotor Volgograd1312004402151109142562-506562-21
11Rubin Kazan1013141438883432-2985172-2
12Saturn Moscow Oblast1212010360120121119396-378481---
13FC Moscow912009270928395295-311359---
14Shinnik Yaroslavl10420083048586133294-403341---
15Amkar Perm912848291111261-338337---
16Chernomorets Novorossiysk8220032487465109274-357287---
17Lokomotiv Nizhny Novgorod8220002486863117233-356267---
18Anzhi Makhachkala62194705569222-223262--1
19Tom Tomsk712011/12224646595219-292257---
20Zhemchuzhina Sochi7119992226157104263-390240---
21Kuban Krasnodar64194526577198-257221---
22Spartak Nalchik612011/12194545783207-239219---
23Terek Grozny62194594491192-276215 4---
24Ural Sverdlovsk Oblast511996158573368215-241204---
25Energia-Tekstilshchik Kamyshin511996158534362172-177202---
26KAMAZ Naberezhnye Chelny511997162513279198-253179 5---
27Uralan Elista522003150363975138-225147---
28Luch-Energia Vladivostok422008124343258116-187134---
29Baltika Kaliningrad31199898303731114-111127---
30Fakel Voronezh432001124312964101-175122---
31Dynamo Stavropol3119949427234494-125104---
32FC Krasnodar2174281927103-100103---
33FC Tyumen5319981542526103116-326101---
34Okean Nakhodka2119936422142865-8380---
35FC Khimki3120099017235086-15174---
36Volga Nizhny Novgorod217419134265-10670---
37Asmaral Moscow2119936019113074-10268---
38Sokol Saratov2120026017133055-8764---
39Lada Togliatti2219966410163842-10546---
40Mordovia Saransk112012/1330552030-5720---
41Sibir Novosibirsk11201030481834-5820---
  1. For clubs that have been renamed, their name at the time of their most recent season in the Russian League is given. The current members are listed in bold.
  2. Includes championship play-offs, does not include relegation play-offs.
  3. For the purposes of this table, each win is worth 3 points. The three-point system was adopted in 1995.
  4. Terek were deducted 6 points in 2005.
  5. KAMAZ-Chally were deducted 6 points in 1997.

Players with most appearances[edit]

As of 28 May 2013 [1] [2] [3] [4]
1Russia Sergei Semak456
2Russia Dmitri Loskov452
3Russia Igor Semshov419
4Russia Valery Yesipov390
5Russia Dmitri Kirichenko377
6Lithuania Deividas Šemberas369
7Russia Ruslan Adzhindzhal360
8Russia Sergei Ignashevich355
9Russia Konstantin Zyryanov346
Russia Andrey Tikhonov346

All-time top scorers[edit]

As of 28 May 2013 [5]
1Russia Oleg Veretennikov1432740.52
2Russia Aleksandr Kerzhakov1292930.44
3Russia Dmitri Kirichenko1293770.34
4Russia Dmitri Loskov1204520.27
5Russia Sergei Semak1024560.22
6Russia Andrey Tikhonov983460.28
7Russia Igor Semshov974190.23
8Russia Roman Pavlyuchenko892340.38
9Russia Yegor Titov883360.26
10Russia Valery Yesipov883900.23

Champions (Players)[edit]


Media coverage[edit]

NTV Plus cameraman
 UkrainePoverkhnost (Sport 1 Ukraine)
 United KingdomBT Sport
 United StatesbeIN Sport
 BrazilESPN Brasil
 SpainGol Televisión
 FranceMa Chaîne Sport
 PolandPolsat Sport
 RomaniaGSP TV
 SerbiaSport Klub
 Bosnia and Herzegovina
 Arab WorldAl Jazeera Sports
 JapanJ Sports
 IndonesiaTelkomVision Arena & Lejel Sport
 ArgentinaTyC Sports
 BelgiumBe TV
AsiaFox Sports Asia

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Russian league switches to new calendar". (UEFA). 2010-09-13. Retrieved 2010-09-13. 

External links[edit]