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FC Rotor Volgograd

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FC Rotor Volgograd

Rotor Volgograd
Full name Football Club Rotor Volgograd
Nickname(s) Сине-голубые (Blue-cyan)
Founded 1929 (1929)
Ground Zenit Stadium
Chairman Valeriy Tamozhnikov
Coach Evald Frolov
League Russian Amateur Football League

FC Rotor-Volgograd Volgograd (Russian: ФК Ротор Волгоград) is a Russian football (soccer) club from Volgograd, Volgograd Oblast.

Contents

  • History 1
  • League and Cup history 2
  • Honours 3
  • Historical names 4
  • Notable players 5
  • Reserves 6
  • External links 7
  • References 8

History

The team name is a reference to the Stalingrad Tractor Factory, once a major producer of tractors, and the scene of heavy fighting during the Battle of Stalingrad during World War II.

Rotor was the last champion of the old USSR Second Division, in 1991, thus forming the new Russian Top Division after the USSR collapsed.

In the mid-1990s, Rotor was one of the strongest clubs in Russia, rivalling Spartak Moscow for the championship, yet never winning it. Rotor became the league runners-up in 1993 and 1997. They also enjoyed some success on the European stage, having eliminated Manchester United from the UEFA Cup in 1995.

In the 2000s, Rotor's results declined, and in 2004, the team finished last in the Russian Premier League. The following winter, Rotor was denied a professional licence, and chose not to participate in the amateur competitions. Private owner of the team Vladimir Goryunov, being a member of the Russian State Parliament Duma and head of the parliamentary committee of sports, explored options to save Rotor from downgrading, such as expanding the Premier League to 20 teams. But he did not succeed in his trials. In November 2004 Rotor left the Premier League and did not manage to return, however, Rotor's former subsidiary B-team, Rotor-2 Volgograd, spent the 2005 season in the Russian Second Division and in January 12, 2006, Rotor-2 was renamed Rotor. The team lost all qualified players and performance in the Second Division was far from ideal. Major role in the team's destiny was the weakening of Vladimir Goryunov's political power. Eventually, he lost his role in state parliament and went into deep troubles with Volgograd region Governor Nilolay Maksyuta. This meant the club was denied any financial support from regional government which is vital for any regional club in Russia.

In 2007 Vladimir Goryunov was forced to step down and control over team and its main asset – Volgograd Central stadium was taken by regional scale oligarch Oleg Mikheev. It's believed by many, that his intentions was far from sport related. A major motive for the takeover was speculated to be political gain, with profit from the eventual sale of Central stadium going to regional/federal government. In early 2009, there were fears that Rotor could go bankrupt very soon, and another club was founded that was originally supposed to be called FC Rotor. However, Rotor survived at that moment, and that new club had to rename itself FC Volgograd.

On 4 August 2009 Rotor were excluded from the Russian Second Division. Owner Oleg Mikheev announced that due to financial problems and heavy pressure on his business from law enforcement agencies he would suspend team operations for 6 months. They had played 18 games and were in 13th position with 21 points at the time. Volgograd Central stadium ownership was taken by the Volgograd regional government using a lawsuit against Oleg Mikheev. It was "proved" that the original title transfer was made unlawfully and any compensation to Mikheev's group was denied.

Importantly, by that stage speculations had started regarding possible FIFA World Cup 2018, as Russia had officially started its bidding campaign.

On 8 February 2010 second trick in Rotor's history have happened. The government of Volgograd region, fed up with the mess around finance and private owners rivalry, took over management. Regional governor Brovko with support of federal Minister of Sport Vitaly Mutko announced that FC Volgograd would be renamed FC Rotor Volgograd in 2010 and would be promoted straight to second national level Russian Football National League "FNL".[1] That only became possible because other teams which qualified from the third level (Second division zone winners) rejected promotion. 150 million rubles were invested in the club by the regional ministry of sports to sign up decently qualified players for a quick start in the higher league. Andrey Krivov former Rotor player was appointed as General Director and Rokhus Shokh former "right hand" of Vladimir Goryunov, took the position of Technical Director.

But the outcome of their management was discouraging - in November 2010 from 17 position in the ladder Rotor were relegated back to the third-level Second Division (South regional zone). Governor Brovko admitted that transition to higher level was made too fast without proper team building. Andrey Krivov was dismissed from General Director role and following referral from Rokhus Shokh, another former club player Sergei Nechay officially took over.

Following 2011/12 season, they won their Second Division zone and were promoted to the second national level Russian Football National League "FNL" once again. Their second attempt in Russian Football National League "FNL" was more successful. Rotor finished on 14th out of 19 in the 2013/14 season and secured their position at this higher level of Russian professional football.

But "dark times" in the club's history continued. A combination of factors pushed Rotor down again. Ineffective management of the club's resources resulted in growing debts to players, agents and service providers. During a relatively short period of time more than 100 players were contracted, but only a few of them really made their mark, with a good number of players never even making the team.

An investigation triggered by the regional Ministry of Sport and conducted by Chamber of Control and Accounts of the Volgograd region[2] showed that there were substantial expenditures exceeding allocated and approved budget limits.

Club managers were accused of taking part in "grey schemes" involving transfer market agents, cheating with market value of the players. As a result, the club budget was cut 160 million rubles short to cover accumulated debts, and another 160 million was required for running costs for the next season in FNL.

At the same time, a new regional Governor was appointed by Vladimir Putin to sort out the region's economic downfall. Under pressure of growing regional debt, new Governor Andrey Bocharov announced the tough decision to voluntarily downgrade Rotor for cost cutting reasons. Having a strong lobby in regional law enforcement agencies, club managers Rokus Shokh and Sergey Nechay escaped imminent consequences and resigned.

In the 2015 season a new team named "Rotor-Volgograd" started competing in the Russian Amateur Football League Chernozemye (South-West Region)[3]

League and Cup history

Honours

Historical names

  • Traktorostroitel Stalingrad (1929)
  • Dzerzhinets Stalingrad (1936)
  • Traktor Stalingrad (1937)
  • Torpedo Stalingrad (1948)
  • Traktor Stalingrad (1958)
  • Traktor Volgograd (1961)
  • Stal Volgograd (1970)
  • Barrikady Volgograd (1972)
  • Rotor Volgograd (1975)
  • Rotor Volgograd (2004) (chose not to participate)

  • Rotor-2 Volgograd (2001)
  • Rotor Volgograd (2005)
  • Rotor Volgograd (2009) (went bankrupt)

Notable players

Had international caps for their respective countries. Players whose name is listed in bold represented their countries while playing for Rotor.

Reserves

The reserves team, called FC Rotor-d Volgograd or FC Rotor-2 Volgograd, participated in the professional competition - Russian Second Division in 1992-1993, 1998–2000 and 2004 and Russian Third League in 1994-1997. They came in 3rd place in their Second Division zone in 1993. In 2001, the reserves tournament for Russian Premier League has been re-established and the reserves team played there while the main team stayed in Premier League. In 2005, the main Rotor team played under the name of FC Rotor-2 Volgograd.

External links

  • (Russian) Official website
  • (Russian) Fans' website
  • (Russian) Fans' website Oleg Veretennikov,FC Rotor
  • ROTOR Fans History on fan site
  • Rotor's Return: Goals, Ghosts and Stalingrad

References

  1. ^ Sport-Express: Rotor to take vacant place in FNL
  2. ^ Chamber of Control and Accounts of Volgograd region
  3. ^
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