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Football has been a part of Russian culture for years now. Like everyone else, football is almost a religion for the Russian fans. Soccer or football has been the number one sport in the country; the Communist party was the governing body over all teams and clubs. However, after the disintegration of USSR into 15 separate countries, the unified football front suffered a setback. Today Russia has a national football team, apart from the six Premier League teams. One of these Premier League football clubs is Lokomotiv Moscow.

Lokomotiv Moscow is a Russian Premier League Football Club, which has been a part of Russian history since early 1920’s. Based in Moscow, this football club has been supported by the Russian Ministry of Railways since its inception. The club which was established in the year 1923 has been known by various names across the years. Beginning as the Club of October Revolution or KOR in 1923, the name was changed to Kazanka, signifying the Moscow-Kazan Railway in 1931. The club acquired its current name “Lokomotiv” in the year 1936.

When it was first established, the KOR club included the names of the best football players from various Russian towns connected by the railways. In a way, the Russian railway was the unifying factor for the members of the KOR football club. And in the early 1920’s the Lokomotiv Moscow or KOR, as it was known then was a force to reckon with, because of the sheer talent pool it had. In the year 1936, when the club was renamed ‘Lokomotiv’, its squad included some of the best names in the business, including Valentin Granatkin, Nikolay llyin, Alexey Sokolov, Pyotr Terenkov, Mikhail Zhukov, llya Gvozdkov, and Ivan Andreev. The first major victory for the club came in the year 1936, when they beat the Dynamo Moscow club with a score of 2:1; thereby winning the USSR Football club.

Though the team managed a stable victory run through the 1930’s, it stumbled during the World War II period when they shuttled between Premier or First League positions. However the spate of ill-luck for Lokomotiv Moscow started waning from early 1950’s when they once again got back into form and got promoted to an A class, Premier League team. They won the USSR cup for the second time in 1957, and in 1959 were awarded with silver medals of the Soviet Union. Lokomotiv Moscow also became the international face of Russian soccer, when they started playing friendly matches with countries across Europe, Asia, Africa and North America.

In the 1980’s when prominent players like Vladimir Maslachenko, Gennady Zabelin, Eugeny Rogov of the Lokomotiv Squad began leaving it for better prospects, the fortunes of this football team sagged once again. It was revived with the arrival of Coach Yury Syomin and the team manager Valery Filatov. Under their guidance, the team when from one victory to another; it won the Russian Premier League in 2002 and 2004, beating the ruling champions Spartak Moscow and CSKA Moscow respectively; the Russian Cup in 1996,1997, 2000 and 2001. They also won the Russian Super Cup in 2003 and 2005.

This prominent football club plays at its own stadium, the Lokomotiv Stadium Moscow with a seating capacity of 28,000. The club has been doing well in the recent years, and finished third amongst the Premier League clubs in the 2005 soccer season.

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