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FC Spartak Moscow ( ) is a football club from Moscowmarker, Russiamarker. They are nicknamed "Meat" because in Soviet era the club was owned by the Collective Production Farms (the kolkhoz and the sovkhoz) .

Spartak have won 12 Soviet championships (second only to Dynamo Kyiv) and 9 of 16 Russian championships. They have also won the Soviet Cup 10 times and the Russian Cup 3 times. Spartak have also reached the semi-finals of all three European club competitions.

The football club is a part of the Spartak Moscow sports society. Other teams in the society include ice hockey club Spartak Moscow.



In the early days of Soviet football many government agencies such as the police, army, and railroads created their own clubs.In 1921 the Moscow Sport Circle (Moscow sport club of Krasnopresnensky district) (Russian: МКС, Московский кружок спорта), later named Krasnaya Presnya was formed by Ivan Artemyev and involved Nikolai Starostin, especially in its football team.[4] The team grew, building a stadium, supporting itself from ticket sales and playing matches across Russia.[5] As part of a 1926 reorganisation of football in the USSR, Starostin arranged for the club to be sponsored by the food workers union and the club moved to the 13,000 seat Tomskii Stadium and was known as Pishcheviki . The team changed sponsors repeatedly over the following years as it competed with Dinamo Moscow, whose 35,000 seat Dinamo Stadium lay close by.

As a high-profile sportsman, Starostin came into close contact with Alexander Kosarev, secretary of the Komsomol (Communist Union of Youth) who already had a strong influence on sport and wanted to extend it.[6] In November 1934, with funding from Promkooperatsiia, Kosarev employed Starostin and his brothers to develop his team to make it more powerful. Again the team changed its name, this time to Spartak Moscow.[7] It took its name from the Roman slave rebel and athlete Spartacus

It became part of the Spartak Sports Society during its establishment on April 19, 1935

Soviet period

In 1935 Starostin proposed the name Spartak that was derived from Spartacus, a gladiator-slave who led a rebellion against Rome, and was inspired by eponymous book by Raffaello Giovagnoli. Starostin is also credited with the creation of the Spartak logo. The same year the club became a part of newly created Spartak sports society.
Spartak's third logo

Czechmarker manager Antonin Fivebr is credited as the first head coach of Spartak, though he worked as a consultant in several clubs simultaneously. In 1936 the Soviet Top League was established. The first Championship was won by Dynamo Moscow, while in the second one held the same year Spartak came first. Before the World War II Spartak gained two more titles.

During 1950-s Spartak together with Dynamo Moscow dominated in the Soviet Top League. When the USSR national football team won gold medals on the Melbourne Olympics, it consisted largely of Spartak players. Spartak captain Igor Netto was the captain of the national team from 1954 to 1963. In the 1960s, Spartak won two league titles, but by mid-60s Spartak was no more regarded as a leading Soviet club. The club was even less successful in the 1970s and in 1976 Spartak was relegated into the lower league.

During the following season, the stadium was still full as the club's fans stayed with the team during its time in the lower division. Konstantin Beskov, who became the head coach (ironically, as a footballer Beskov made his name playing for Spartak's main rivals, Dynamo Moscow), introduced several young players, including Rinat Dasayev and Georgi Yartsev. Spartak came back the next year and won the title in 1979, beating Dynamo Kyiv and thanks to Spartak supporters, the period is considered to be the start of the modern-style fans' movement in the Soviet Union.

On October 20, 1982, disaster struck during the UEFA Cup match between Spartak and HFC Haarlem. Scores of people were trampled. The official number of deaths is 66 but many people believe this number to be significantly higher.

In 1989 Spartak won the its last USSR Championship defeating 2-1 the main rival Dynamo Kyiv in the closing round. Spartak's striker Valery Shmarov scored the "golden" free kick with almost no time left. The next season Spartak reached European Cup semifinal consequently eliminating Napoli (by penalties) and Real Madrid (with 3-1 away victory) but losing to Olympique de Marseille.

Modern period

A new page in the club’s history began when the USSR collapsed and its championship ceased to exist. In the newly created Russian league, Spartak, led by coach and president Oleg Romantsev dominated and won all but one title between 1992 and 2001. Year after year the team also represented Russia in the Champions League.

Problems began in the new century. Several charismatic players (Ilya Tsymbalar and Andrey Tikhonov among others) left the club as a result of conflict with Romantsev. Later Romantsev sold his stock to oil magnate Andrei Chervichenko, who in 2003 became the club president. The two were soon embroiled in a row that would continue until Romantsev was sacked in 2003 with the club suffering several sub-par seasons until Chervichenko finally sold his stock in 2004. The new ownership made a number of front office changes with the aim of returning the team to the top of the Russian Premier League.

In the 2005 season, Spartak, led by Aleksandrs Starkovs, finished 2nd in the league following an impressive run to beat Lokomotiv, Zenit and Rubin to the last Champions League place.

Following a mixed start to the 2006 season and public criticism from Dmitry Alenichev, the team's captain and one of its most experienced players, Starkovs left his position to Vladimir Fedotov.

Spartak was entitled to place a golden star on its badge in 2003 in commemoration of having won five Russian championships (this having been achieved in 1997).


European campaigns

Season Achievement Notes
European Cup / UEFA Champions League
1980-81 Quarter Final eliminated by Real Madrid 0-0 in Moscow, 0-2 in Madrid
1990-91 Semi Final eliminated by Marseille 1-3 in Moscow, 1-2 in Marseille
1993-94 Quarter Final finished third in a group with Barcelona, Monaco and Galatasaray
1995-96 Quarter Final eliminated by Nantes 2-2 in Moscow, 0-2 in Nantes
UEFA Cup Winners' Cup
1972-73 Quarter Final eliminated by Milan 0-1 in Moscow, 1-1 in Milan
1992-93 Semi Final eliminated by Antwerp 1-0 in Moscow, 1-3 in Antwerp
1983-84 Quarter Final eliminated by Anderlecht 2-4 in Brussels, 1-0 in Moscow
1997-98 Semi Final eliminated by Inter 1-2 in Moscow, 1-2 in Milan

League positions

ImageSize = width:600 height:60PlotArea = left:10 right:10 bottom:30 top:10TimeAxis = orientation:horizontal format:yyyyDateFormat = dd/mm/yyyyPeriod = from:01/07/1991 till:01/07/2009ScaleMajor = unit:year increment:1 start:1992Colors =
 id:bl1  value:rgb(0.5,0.8,0.5)
 id:bl2  value:rgb(0.9,0.9,0.3)
 id:rs  value:rgb(0.8,0.6,0.6)
 id:rn  value:rgb(0.9,0.1,0.1)

 bar:Position width:15 color:white align:center

 from:01/07/1991 till:01/07/1992  shift:(0,-4) text:1
 from:01/07/1992 till:01/07/1993  shift:(0,-4) text:1
 from:01/07/1993 till:01/07/1994  shift:(0,-4) text:1
 from:01/07/1994 till:01/07/1995  shift:(0,-4) text:3
 from:01/07/1995 till:01/07/1996  shift:(0,-4) text:1
 from:01/07/1996 till:01/07/1997  shift:(0,-4) text:1
 from:01/07/1997 till:01/07/1998  shift:(0,-4) text:1
 from:01/07/1998 till:01/07/1999  shift:(0,-4) text:1
 from:01/07/1999 till:01/07/2000  shift:(0,-4) text:1
 from:01/07/2000 till:01/07/2001  shift:(0,-4) text:1
 from:01/07/2001 till:01/07/2002  shift:(0,-4) text:3
 from:01/07/2002 till:01/07/2003  shift:(0,-4) text:10
 from:01/07/2003 till:01/07/2004  shift:(0,-4) text:8
 from:01/07/2004 till:01/07/2005  shift:(0,-4) text:2
 from:01/07/2005 till:01/07/2006  shift:(0,-4) text:2
 from:01/07/2006 till:01/07/2007  shift:(0,-4) text:2
 from:01/07/2006 till:01/07/2007  shift:(0,-4) text:2
 from:01/07/2007 till:01/07/2008  shift:(0,-4) text:8
 from:01/07/2008 till:01/07/2009  shift:(0,-4) text:2

 from:01/07/1991 till:01/07/2009  color:bl1  shift:(0,13)  text: "Russian Premier League"


The team is usually called "red-and-whites", but among the fans "The Meat" is a very popular nickname. The origins of the nickname belong to the days of the foundation of the club; in the 1920s the team was renamed several times, from "Moscow Sports Club" to "Red Presnya" (after the name of one of the districts of Moscow) to "Pishcheviki" ("Food industry workers") to "Promkooperatsiya" ("Industrial cooperation") and finally to "Spartak Moscow" in 1935, and for many years the team was under patronage of one of the Moscow food factories which dealt with meat products.

One of the most favourite slogans of both the fans and players is "Who are we? We're The Meat!" "Meats by Ste'

The other nickname is "Svin'i" ("Pigs"), although, unsurprisingly, this is considered offensive by the team's fans.

Rival teams

At present, Spartak's arch rival is CSKA Moscow; although this is a relatively recent rivalry having only emerged in the last twenty years. Seven of ten matches with the largest audience in Russian Premier League (including top three) were Spartak-CSKA derbies. One of the most celebrated rivalries is "Spartak-Dinamo", with neighbours Dinamo Moscow. However, this has faded somewhat due to Dinamo's poor performances. Matches against Lokomotiv Moscow and Zenit St.Petersburg attract thousands of people as well, almost always resulting in packed stadiums.Another rivalry was lost with the collapse of the Soviet Unionmarker. This was with Dynamo Kyiv, one of the leaders of the USSR championship; since they are now playing in the Ukrainianmarker championship, they must qualify for UEFA tournaments to meet each other.


Spartak has never had its own stadium and the team has played in various Moscowmarker stadiums throughout its history and even once an exhibition match on Red Squaremarker. Currently, the club's home ground is the 5-star Luzhniki Stadiummarker which officially belongs to another Moscow club, Torpedo.

However, the club's new board has recently declared that "Spartak will soon play on their own stadiummarker". The federal government has agreed to give land for the stadium near the Tushinomarker air field. The construction will begin in 2007 and is expected to end in 2009.

Racism incidents

The club has a history of racist incidences between supporters and foreign players, especially of black complexion, with the possible connivance of club officials and players. In 2003, Cameroonianmarker player Jerry-Christian Tchuissé denounced suffering racist taunts, such as bananas being thrown onto the pitch and chants that mimicked monkey sounds coming from the stands, every time he played against Spartak, his former club. The Russian Football Union (RFU) intervened and invited him to take part in a showcase match aimed at fighting racism. In 2007, the club was placed under investigation by the RFU for their fans' behaviour, after a banner was unfurled in the stands which contained abuse directed at a club's new signing, Brazilian playermarker Welliton Soares Morais; the banner read, in English: "The number 11 belongs to Tikhonov. Monkey go home". The club was eventually found guilty, and fined 19,000 dollars.

Current squad

As of August 31, 2009, according to the Russian Premier League official website.

For recent transfers, see List of Russian football transfers summer 2009 and List of Russian football transfers winter 2009–10.

Reserve squad

The following players are listed by Spartak's website as reserve players and are registered with the Premier League. They are eligible to play for the first team.

Spartak's reserve squad played professionally as FC Spartak-d Moscow (Russian Second League in 1992-1993, Russian Third Division in 1994-1997) and as FC Spartak-2 Moscow (Russian Second Division in 1998-2000).

Out on loan

Notable players









Czech Republic


















Name Period Trophies
Antonin Fivebr 1936
Mikhail Kozlov August 1936-1937
Konstantin Kvashnin 1937-September 1938, 1944, 1948
Pyotr Popov September 1938—1939; 1941
Vladimir Gorokhov 1940, 1942-1943
Pyotr Isakov 1945 (January-August), caretaker
Alber Wolrat September 1945-1947
Abram Dangulov 1949-May 1951
Pyotr Isakov 1945 (January-August), caretaker
Georgi Glazkov June-December 1951
Vasily Sokolov 1952-1954
Nikolay Gulyaev 1955—1959, 1966, 1973—1975
Nikita Simonyan 1960-September 1965, July 1967-1972
Sergei Salnikov January-July 1967
Anatoly Krutikov 1976
Konstantin Beskov 1978-1988
Oleg Romantsev 1989-1995, 1997-May 2003
Georgi Yartsev 1996
Vladimir Fedotov May-June 2003 (caretaker), September-December 2003 (caretaker), April 2006-June 19, 2007
Andrei Chernyshov June-September 2003
Nevio Scala January-September 2004
Aleksandrs Starkovs September 2004-April 2006
Stanislav Cherchesov June 19? 2007-August 15, 2008
Igor Lediakhov August 15, 2008-September 9, 2008 (caretaker)
Michael Laudrup September 9, 2008 - April 15, 2009
Valery Karpin April 15, 2009 - Present


  1. History of Spartak,
  2. All-star Spartak rise again, Eduard Nisenboim,
  3. Samye poseschaemye matchi v istorii chempionatov Rossii
  4. " Gyan accuses Spartak of racism" - BBC Sport, 10 November 2006
  5. BBC News: Tackling racism in Russian football
  7. IHL: Spartak Moscow fined US$19,000 (€14,000) for racist banner aimed at own player

External links

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