Tag Archives: Russia

Thirty Years Ago Today – The Spartak Moscow Disaster Remembered – by Ecojon

THIRTY years ago today the fans of Spartak Moscow were struck by a terrible tragedy when at least 66 of them died although the actual death toll could be in the hundreds.

It eerily mirrors the 1971 Ibrox Disaster with the same official death toll and a stairway location at the end of a game with a last-minute goal as Rangers fans headed homewards.

There are also uncanny connections to the 1989 Hillsborough Disaster with police standing by, like disinterested observers, as dozens died before their eyes from crush injuries and suffocation and medical staff were denied access.

And just like the Liverpool victims the Spartak supporters and their families also suffered an extensive cover-up, denial of the facts and denigration of their loved ones who were blamed for their own deaths, accused of being drunk and antagonising the police by throwing snowballs at them.

We all know how long and hard the people of Liverpool have fought, against what often seemed like insurmountable odds, for justice, punishment of the guilty and the restoration of the good name of the 96. Continue reading

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Filed under Football, Guest Posts, History, Spartak Moscow

Did Scottish Weavers teach Revolution to the Russians as well as football? – by Ecojon

A bemused Russian press first reported football being played in 1868 by British Residents of St Petersburg, the Tzarist Capital which provided Russia’s ‘Window on the West’. The British ‘colony’ centred their sporting and leisure activities at the Imperial River Yacht Club on Krestovsky Island but had to rely on crews from visiting British ships to provide opposition teams. Interestingly British sailors were reported as early as 1860 playing football in the Black Sea naval base of Odessa.


The body of ‘Mad Monk’ Rasputin was recovered beneath river ice near the island in December 1916 and in recent times the finger of suspicion for his murder has been pointed at the British Secret Intelligence Service.

St Petersburg’s first football club ‘Viktoria’ surfaced in 1894 with English and German players to be joined by the ‘Scottish Circle of Amateurs’ – ‘English Football Club’ – ‘Germania FC’ and ‘Gloria’ with their teams drawn from the various diplomatic missions and ex-pat business communities.

A major break-through came just two years when a Frenchman first published the rules of the game in Russian leading to the formation of ‘SPORT’ (St Petersburg Circle of Amateur Sportsmen) the first Russian team followed by ‘Petrograd’ (old name for St Petersburg) who were beaten 6-0 on Vasilievsky Island, in October 1897, by the mainly English ‘Ostrov’ (Island) team. Continue reading

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Filed under Football, Guest Posts, History