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Slovak “alien” and Little General. RPL foreign coaches

Date: April 1, 2023 Time: 23:14:03

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 Evgeny Kucherevsky and Vladimir Muntyan (1999-2002):


The quarter 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 arrived in Russia in 2004 (Yaroslav Grzhebik, Alexander Starkov, Edgar Hess):


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


Today, as an exception, there are only two coaches, but Dick Advocaat surpasses all previous ones in importance for Russian football.

VLADIMIR WEISS, Slovakia – 43 games: 9-24-10 (1.19 ppg)

Club: “Saturn”


Years in Russia: 2006-2007

Weiss was an outstanding midfielder by local standards, even making 31 appearances for the Slovak and Czechoslovak national teams, but he never left his homeland as a footballer. At the end of his career in 1996-2000, he was a game coach at Artmedia Petrzalka, where at the turn of the century he concentrated on coaching and was quite successful: he won the national championship and the Cup of the country, and in the 2005/06 season performed strongly in European competition: in the Champions League qualification Kairat (4:1 after 0:2 away), Celtic (5:0 at home) and Partizan, and did not lose to Porto (0:0 ). 0, 3:2) in the group stage and “Rangers (0:0, 2:2) and finished third.

For these merits, he was invited to Saturn, where they dreamed of European Cups and collected a good squad: Antonin Kinsky, Antonio Zheder, Alexei Igonin, Alexei Eremenko Jr., Edgaras Chesnauskis. The coach took Jan Duritsui Martin Yakubko from Slovakia, who stayed in the RPL for a long time.

Unfortunately, the coach did not manage to put together a strong team with good players. In 2006, the “aliens” started with only one victory in seven rounds, and in total they scored 16 (!) Ties in the championship, becoming one of the friendliest teams in Russian history. In addition, the 16th (repeating Rotor’s “record”) on matchday 27 was a draw with Spartak, which prevented the rojiblancos from clinging to the championship race. In the remaining matches they won, but with equal points they lost the first line to CSKA. And Saturn finished 11th.

Despite the unsatisfactory results, the Slovak was given another chance and confidently blew it, having won only two (!) victories in 13 rounds of the 2007 season. Naturally, the team was one step away from relegation, and the club management could not bear it. So Weiss was remembered in Russia only for a stifling defense (in 2006, they conceded the fewest, and Kinski scored 13 crackers) and a large number of draws.

Weiss returned to Artmedia, where he immediately scored a golden double and was appointed to the Slovakia national team. With it he qualified for the 2010 World Cup from the group with Poland, the Czech Republic and Slovenia, where, thanks to the victory over Italy (3: 2), he reached the 1/8 final in the final round (1: 2). 2 of the future finalists for the Dutch). In the following campaign, the Slovaks criticized the Russian team in Moscow under the leadership of Dick Advocaat (more on him below), but failed in the national team final and did not reach Euro 2012.

Weiss went to Slovan (Slovakian Zenit, as he himself called it), with whom he won the championship, then he spent three years in Kairat (two Kazakhstan Cups, silver and two bronze), four years in the Georgian team and returns in 2021 to Slovan. In February 2022, he admitted that he had received offers from Russia on more than one occasion. Marco Trabucchi tried to appoint him to Krasnodar, but Sergei Galitsky chose another coach, Ural was talked about, and Arsenal even prepared a contract, but the Georgians did not let his mentor go to the RPL. Weiss is only 58 years old, so he still has a chance to return to Russia. In any case, he himself does not care.

DICK ADVOCAT, Netherlands – 97 games: 46-32-19 (1.75 ppg)

Club: “Zenith”

Achievements: champion and winner of the Russian Super Cup, winner of the UEFA Cup and the Super Cup

Years in Russia: 2006-2009, 2010-2012

The first real real coach in Russian football. He started training back in the 80s, at the beginning of the 90s he was an assistant to Rinus Michels himself in the Dutch team, and a year later he directed Orange himself and reached the quarterfinals of the 1994 World Cup with them, where he lost to the future Brazilian winners. He returned to the national team three more times and took bronze at Euro 2004. He won the Dutch (with PSV) and Scottish (with Rangers) championships.

In general, he ended up in St. Petersburg, already being one of the most famous coaches in the world, but it was here that he reached a kind of peak, becoming the second coach on the planet according to IFFHS (Sir Alex Ferguson was recognized as the best). At Zenit, he did a tremendous job, taking Petrzhela’s sixth league team to victory in the UEFA Cup, a landmark achievement in the history of St. Petersburg and Russian football.

Under him, Anatoly Tymoshchuk and Pavel Pogrebnyak, Konstantin Zyryanov and Andrey Arshavin became football stars, Igor Denisov and Roman Shirokov, who played central defender, demonstrated the best football in their careers, and St. Petersburg beat Marseille in home and destroyed Bayern. (4-0), visiting, the ice rink passed Bayer (4-1) and took the UEFA Super Cup from Manchester United from that same Ferguson. Under him, Igor Semshov and Nicholas Lomberts came to the team.

Interestingly, in three years the Advocate won only one Russian championship – in the 2007 season. The year before, he stopped playing for Petrzhela, and in the triumphant 2008, the Zenit team at first was too interested in the UEFA Cup, then in the bronze medal of Euro 2008 and experienced the departure of Arshavin to Arsenal. And they finished only fifth. In 2009, the team could not recover their courage, Zenit lost in the round of 16 of the UEFA Cup against Udinese and was terribly unstable in the championship, so after Tom’s 0-2 home, the coach was fired.

“The success turned out to be deafening, but you have to pay for it: the best players began to leave us. This is a natural process, but I wanted to replace the leaders with someone. I spoke to management about this, and more than once. They agreed with me, and then they just fired me. And for a new coach, players were bought for tens of millions. It was strange. It seemed to me that he did a lot for Zenit. Yes, together we take the club to a whole new level. But I am an important part of this “we” and therefore I deserve respect. Dyukov called me and said curtly: “Dick, the board of directors fired you.” Damn, I deserved to be told this to my face!” – the lawyer was stumped years later.

The Advocate stage was a decisive stage in the history of Zenit. It was under him that the club’s ambitions for the RPL medal grew to universal proportions. It was he who proved that nothing is impossible in this. And he did it even before the fabulous transfers of the Hulk and Axel Witsel.

It is very symbolic that Advocaat came a few days after the farewell game at the Kirov Stadium and witnessed the laying of the first stone at the Gazprom Arena. And even the fact that then a lot of things did not go according to plan, if you think about it, it is also very symbolic, because Zenit has not yet reached the bar set by the Dutchman. Not without reason he received the title of honorary citizen of St. Petersburg. He left the city crying, only PSV under his leadership played more games than Zenit (200 against 132).

Soon Advocaat returned to Russia to take over the board of directors of the national team. And with this, he again followed in the footsteps of Guus Hiddink, after whom he “picked up” the South Korean team in a similar way. With our team, he confidently entered Euro 2012 and in the first round destroyed the Czech Republic 4: 1. It seemed that the Russians could once again give away a miraculous tournament, like four years ago, but followed by a draw with Poland and a minimal defeat against Greece in a situation in which they had to score at least one point to qualify for the playoffs. . The lawyer, lamenting that Alan Dzagoev did not hit his head in an empty corner, finally left Russia.

His later career is reminiscent of American racing. He coached both the Dutch football giants (PSV, Feyenoord), and the absolute middle peasants (Sparta, Utrecht), received at the disposal of the national teams of Serbia and Iraq, Sunderland and Fenerbahce, announced his retirement a dozen times, but always came back Since November, the 75-year-old (!) Lawyer has been coaching Dutch Second League club Den Hag, with whom he won seven games out of 12 (with four draws and one loss).

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

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