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A Russified Graf, owner of the Ballon d’Or and without a Croatian name. RPL foreign coaches

Date: March 22, 2023 Time: 12:20:27

The first part of our story was dedicated to Sergey Morozov, Eduard Malofeev and Viktor Prokopenko (they made their debut in the RPL in 1992-1994).

In the second part we talk about Benyaminas Zelkevichus, David Kipiani and Pavel Yakovenko (RPL debut 1997-1999).

In the third part, the time has come for the first foreigner from abroad, Boris Bunyak, as well as Yevgeny Kucherevsky and Vladimir Muntyan (1999-2002).

The fourth portion of foreign mercenaries (Revaz Dzodzuashvili, Vlastimil Petrzhela, Sergei Aleinikov).

And the fifth, the most memorable (Arthur Jorge, Nevio Scala, Roland Courbis).

Another trio of foreigners who came to Russia in 2004 (Yaroslav Grzhebik, Alexander Starkov, Edgar Hess).

Then we met Yitzhak Shum, Ivo Wortman and Slavoljub Muslin.

And soon – with Vladimir Weiss and Dick Advocaat, to whom a monument should be erected in St. Petersburg.

MIODRAG BOZOVIC, Montenegro – 291 games: 97-78-116 (1.27 ppg)

Clubs: Amkar, Moscow, Dynamo, Rostov, Lokomotiv, Arsenal, Wings of the Soviets

Achievements: Russian Cup

Years in Russia: 2008-2015, 2017-2022

Perhaps the most Russified foreign coach in the history of the RPL, hosting as many as seven Premier League teams, two of which are no longer even alive. In terms of the number of matches between foreigners, he leads by a margin, and in points he is second only to Viktor Prokopenko – 369 against 370. True, the former Rotor coach needed 63 fewer games for this.

Bozovic was not a famous footballer, although he managed to fly Red Star for a couple of seasons. Before coming to Russia, he managed to train in Serbia (then still Yugoslavia), Montenegro, Japan and Cyprus. He was marked by a 27-match unbeaten run for Budućnost.

Upon arrival in Perm, Bozhovich proved to be the best. Sincere, open, playful, liberal, he put careful football on Amkar and immediately flew to the Cup final and fourth place in the RPL; to this day, this is the greatest achievement in the club’s history. Tomislav Duimovich (later he played in Loko and Dynamo) and Nikola Drinchich (Spartak, Krasnodar) declared themselves in that team, and Georgi Peev and Zakhary Sirakov established an unspoken rule for a decade: “There is no Amkar without a Bulgarian.” And Zheka Savin was also in the team. If the same.

The coach did not stay in Perm either, having received an offer from Moscow for the next season and witnessing his death. Bozovic had a very decent championship, lifting the team from ninth to sixth. His team included Alexander Samedov, Hector Bracamonte, Maxi Lopez, Tomas Cizek, Dmitry Tarasov, Kirill Nababkin, Alexander Epureanu and a dozen decent players. The band was right! The only pity is that Norilsk Nickel got tired of supporting the team and refused to sell it. As a result, the Muscovites sold the players and withdrew from the championship, and Bozovic got a job at Dynamo two months later.

Unfortunately, it didn’t work out so well here. The blue and whites finished in the middle of the table and the coach was fired at the beginning of the next season. He returned to Perm, where he again put together a great run (1.68 points per game, a repeat of his first run) and propelled the team into the top 10 in that epic 44-game transition season.

Then there were two years in Rostov, remembered for the victory in the Russian Cup and a brilliant group of players from Spartak Jano Ananidze – Artem Dziuba in the 2013/14 season. The first gave nine assists, the second scored 17 goals. True, they were both on loan and in the end they returned to Moscow, and the Rostovites sailed: one win, one draw and six losses at the beginning of the next season, followed by expulsion.

But then again, Bozovic didn’t sit around long without a job. A week and a half later, he headed Lokomotiv, where he was invited by the hateful Olga Smorodskaya. This period of his career was divided into two parts: in the first 11 matches the railway won eight victories, and in the next ten – only one. And the Montenegrin left, thanking the club for providing all the conditions and selecting the players, and admitting that he, as a coach, did not succeed.

So, the fall of 2014 gave him the last pleasant memories of Russia. Subsequently, he also made it to Arsenal (twice) and Wings of the Soviets, but each time without success. However, his coaching qualifications are evidenced by the fact that all this time he trained only outside our country and immediately gave a result – in 2015 he returned to Red Star Zvezda and immediately won the Serbian championship with him, and only in the second season. three points behind Partizan.

Now the 54-year-old Graf (he was given that nickname as a soccer player because of how dapper he looked) is taking a break from work, but it’s hard to imagine he wouldn’t fall for the RPL once or twice. twice to please us with jokes about doing push-ups from the floor, it should be as if a girl is lying under you.

OLEG BLOKHIN, Ukraine – 30 games: 9-11-10 (1.27 ppg)

Club Moscow”

Achievements: –

Years in Russia: 2008

The great forward, owner of the Ballon d’Or, finished his career in Cyprus, so for the first 12 (!) Years he trained in Greece, including Olympiakos, with whom, however, he could not win the championship, but took the country cup. and Super Cup and two sets of silver medals. They could only persuade him to leave Greece in the FFU, offering to head the Ukrainian national team. With it he achieved historic success, reaching the quarterfinals of the 2006 World Cup. Unfortunately, that achievement remained the main one in his career.

The Ukrainians failed in the next qualifying round, and the coach left. It was then that the option with “Moscow” arose, looking for a successor to Leonid Slutsky. Blokhin agreed and was probably very sorry. It did not work out for him from the very beginning – he got the first victory only on the eighth attempt, and even then on Nalchik.

“Caps”, as the players of “Moscow” were jokingly called, hinting at a connection with the mayor’s office, spent the entire season without reeling or rolling, alternating wins, draws and losses approximately equally and finished the season in the ninth place, which after Slutsky’s fourth place was a complete failure, although Blokhin did not think so. However, the parties parted ways on a respectful note, emphasizing that this is a mutual decision. The club explained that it was not only the results, but also the expensive contract of the coach against the background of the financial crisis.

Meanwhile, Blokhin did not succeed anywhere else – neither in the Ukrainian national team nor in Dynamo Kiev, from where he left under a hail of harsh criticism. Artem Milevsky said: “The current coach, apart from drinking coffee and smoking cigarettes on the bench, does nothing else for the team… He likes to say “me”, “me”, but in the clubs where he worked, drowned everyone”. And Igor Surkis claimed that in two years Blokhin had not solved a single problem. In the championship, the team even fell out of the top 2.

Since 2014, Blokhin has not trained, but since 2018 he has been working in the national team in various administrative positions.

ZORAN VULIC, Croatia – 24 games: 3-10-11 (0.79 points per game)

Club: Lunch

Achievements: –

Years in Russia: 2008

Without Google and other auxiliary tools, most will not be able to notice the Russian trail of this “specialist”. Vulich was a good player, he played 25 games with the Yugoslav national team, he played in Mallorca and Nantes for five seasons, he was an important figure for Hajduk, with whom he won two Yugoslav championships. Here he completed his playing career and began his coaching career, having risen from a member of the coaching staff to his head.

In 2002-2004, Vulich helped Otto Barić in the Croatian national team, with which he did not leave the difficult group for Euro 2004 (England, France, Switzerland). In general, when he came to Vladivostok, he had never trained abroad. And in vain he chose “Ray” as his first experience. A year earlier, the team barely managed to stay in the Premier League, but this time it failed epically, having won only 3 (!) victories in 30 rounds. Vulich did not finish the season, he was fired after the 24th round, when the “power engineers” received eight (!) goals from Zenit: Danny, Andrey Arshavin, Roman Shirokov, Alejandro Dominguez and Fatih Tekke, who scored a hat-trick , I note.

Vulich returned to Croatia, from where he did not stand out anywhere until 2015, when he received an invitation from Tiraspol. Here he won the gold of the Moldovan championship, which, as you know, is not difficult with Sheriff (15 wins out of 18 matches). Then there were business trips to Kazakhstan (Atyrau) and Greece (Apollo, Xanthi), but without much success. She has been unemployed since last February.

Puck Henry
Puck Henry
Puck Henry is an editor for ePrimefeed covering all types of news.

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