Krasnoyarsk football historian Eduard Dragan about his love for the game and the brightest matches of Krasnoyarsk Enisey — News (Sports) /

In 2022, the Yenisei football club from the Krasnoyarsk Territory turned 85 years old. Like it or not, there are not so many teams in Siberia that play in the top football leagues. But the Krasnoyarsk “lions” (as local fans call them) have a very impressive sports history.

The Krasnoyarsk Territory has given its country enough football stars, and Eduard Dragan can best tell about them and the history of regional football. The author of the book “100 years of Krasnoyarsk football”, he has been following the game of our football players since 1977, and he himself works at FC Enisey.

Today, one of the most devoted fans of Krasnoyarsk football told journalist about when he started chronicling Krasnoyarsk football, how many black players played for Yenisei in different years, and why in 1999 not all fans of the Krasnoyarsk lion did not see the decisive goal at the stadium in Kazan.

Eduard, how did you become a chronicler of Krasnoyarsk football?

– As a child, I played football in the children’s team with coach Sergei Arsentievich Yegorshin, in 1977 I first came to football, to the match of the Krasnoyarsk Avtomobilist. I bought a football program at the box office, a guide for the 1977 season and … got carried away! I tried not to miss the team’s home games. At the same time, he began to collect football literature (programs, reference books, books, booklets), and in 1988 he began to correspond with colleagues from other cities. We exchanged football materials, match statistics.

In 1993, he received an invitation from his first coach to work in the women’s football club Sibiryachka. There I started producing my first football programs. A year later, he began to make football programs, booklets and reference calendars for the matches of the men’s Metallurg. Although I wrote my first program back in 1982. Once I bought a defective program – there was no text inside the four-page program – I came home and filled it out myself. By the way, this program is still kept in my collection.

But you didn’t just remain a fan, but came to work at the football Yenisei?

– Yes, in 1994 I started working there, as a press attache, and then as a videographer, and I still work at the Yenisei football club. In 2017, I returned to women’s football, but I continue to prepare match programs with my colleagues for all three teams of the club (the main team, Yenisei-2 and women’s), and often include history and statistics in them.

Why did you decide to keep football statistics and why do you pay so much attention to history?

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– Even when I was in school, one of my favorite subjects was history. Probably, hence the love for facts, for the history of the football club. Now this is my favorite hobby. Moreover, it is very disappointing that now only two people are actively involved in the history of Krasnoyarsk football. Young people think that any fact can be found on the Internet, but this is not so. First you need to delve into the archives, libraries (and not only in Krasnoyarsk), and establish contacts with colleagues in other cities.

I was lucky to talk and write down the veterans of Krasnoyarsk football, who played before the Great Patriotic War. In addition, in 1994 I started writing about football and doing interviews with people from football for Segodnyashnaya Gazeta, collaborated with Sport-Express, and later with Soviet Sport and Sport on the Yenisei.

In your opinion, what events in the history of Krasnoyarsk football were the most striking?

– It’s better to start with the first teams, the first cups that were played at the beginning of the 20th century: both before the 1917 revolution and in the 20s. From 1912 to 1919, the City Government Cup was played, and the championship of the city of Krasnoyarsk was held (in 1914, 17 teams already participated in it).

In 1922 the team of Krasnoyarsk became the champion of Siberia. In 1936 Dynamo Krasnoyarsk made its debut in the USSR Cup. In 1937, our other team, Lokomotiv (the successor of today’s Yenisei), took part in the USSR championships, and in 1953, another Krasnoyarsk team, Traktor, won the RSFSR Cup. A very honorable trophy in those years.

Five times the Krasnoyarsk team of masters won the zonal tournament of the second division, and once tried their hand at the Russian Premier League (season 2018-2019). Yes, and the current team of the 2022 model, I think, is able to fight for the highest places and get Krasnoyarsk a ticket to the Premier League.

Tell us about your publications?

– Over the 110 years of Krasnoyarsk football, there have undoubtedly been many successes, which I wrote about in several of my books and reference books. I started writing them in 2003, when I got out of a serious illness, and I realized that I had done little for Krasnoyarsk football.

To date, he has published 77 publications. Some of them saw the light thanks to the help of the football club (these are the so-called official publications). Another part was published with the support of the Regional Football Federation “Union of Football Federations of Siberia”, and half were released at my own expense and with the help of my friends.

“The stadium roared with delight!”: Krasnoyarsk football historian Eduard Dragan about the love of the game and the brightest matches of Krasnoyarsk Enisey

Are today’s football players different from those that were brought up in the 20th century? Can we create an image of a football player or team, for example, over the past hundred years?

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– Football changes every 10 years. It is impossible to create an image of the Krasnoyarsk team in the entire history of regional football. Every decade there was a completely different football. Not only the players changed, but also the rules of the game, tactics. You can assemble teams for decades, but not for 100 years, that’s for sure. For example, modern football has become physically stronger, there are many tall players. It used to be completely different.

About persons. Who exactly should be in the Krasnoyarsk Football Hall of Fame, apart from Tarkhanov and Romantsev?

– For Krasnoyarsk football legend No. 1 is Yuri Sipkin. He devoted 19 seasons to football, played more than 600 official games for the team. I think it won’t be long before we have a player who breaks this record.

The age of Romantsev and Tarkhanov was short-lived for Krasnoyarsk football. After several years of playing for Avtomobilist Krasnoyarsk, they moved to other teams, and then became successful coaches. We are proud of them too.

We can also mention many other football players who have earned the fame and love of the Krasnoyarsk fans. Many of them will be noted in my booklets “Stars of Krasnoyarsk football”. To date, 16 such books have already been published. The series will continue.

How do your family and friends feel about football? Sports dynasty Dragan will appear in Krasnoyarsk?

– The younger son is a fan, the eldest also used to go to watch games at the stadium. Everyone is loyal to football. Some relatives used to laugh when I started working at the football club. While none of them in the sport does not work. But I also didn’t think before that I would return to football at the age of 29. Life is unpredictable.

Do you follow other leagues and what is your favorite team?

– I watch football at different levels: from exercise therapy and women’s to foreign championships, but still I am a fan of Krasnoyarsk football. Favorite team – “Yenisei”. In Soviet times, I was rooting for the Lviv Karpaty, and in the Russian Premier League, while there is no Yenisei, I sympathize with the St. Petersburg Zenit, and from the time when Gazprom was not there yet.

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What statistics of Yenisei do you keep and where can you see it?

– With my hobby colleague Dmitry Tsetsarkin, we keep a lot of different statistics. After all, fans are interested in finding out completely different information: how many games the team has played, how many victories, defeats, how many penalties were taken, how many international matches the team has played. We have already published some of this information on the Internet, something is published in the official programs of the club, and some information is still waiting in the archives.

“The stadium roared with delight!”: Krasnoyarsk football historian Eduard Dragan about the love of the game and the brightest matches of Krasnoyarsk Enisey

Can you share the most interesting facts?

– Well, for example. Do the fans know how many black players played for the Krasnoyarsk team during its existence? And there were seven of them. The first in 1997 was Adrien Paho from Cameroon, the second was his compatriot Didier Biang in 2001-2002. Later there were two black football players of Russian origin – Stanislav Lebamba and Lionel Adams. Then, under the leadership of Andrei Tikhonov, the Brazilian Nivaldo played (albeit not for long). And in the Premier League, we saw Nigerian Fegor Ogude and Babakar Sarra from Senegal in the Yenisei squad.

Or, for example, there was a match in 2011 at the Central Stadium. Yenisei hosted the Sochi Zhemchuzhina. In the 82nd minute Krasnoyarsk conceded a goal and lost 1:2. But in the last 10 minutes, including extra time, Enisey managed to score three goals! Goncharov and Bazanov scored in regular time, and in extra time Valery Korobkin got a free-kick from forty meters. The stadium roared with delight!

Or games with Rubin Kazan in 1999. In the first round match Krasnoyarsk opened the score in Kazan and held the advantage until the last minutes. And at the end, on the 84th and in extra time, we conceded the ball, losing 1:2. In the second round match, Kazan scored at the Central Stadium in the 88th minute, but managed to lose 1:2, receiving two return goals in the 89th and 90th minutes!

By the way, half of the fans of Metallurg Krasnoyarsk did not see these goals, because after the missed goal they began to leave the stadium. And Roman Sharonov, who played in the first round for Metallurg, and in the second round for Rubin, lost twice. After the match, he commented on this with the words: “It doesn’t happen like that!” (laughs).

Photo from the archive of Eduard Dragan

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