1997 Belarusian First League
|Relegated||FC Lokomotiv Vitebsk
Stroitel Starye Dorogi
|Goals scored||677 (2.82 per match)|
|Biggest home win||BATE 10–0 Stroitel|
|Biggest away win||Bereza 1–7 BATE|
|Highest scoring||BATE 10–0 Stroitel|
Team changes from 1996 season
Two best teams of 1996 Belarusian First League (Transmash Mogilev and Kommunalnik Slonim) were promoted to Belarusian Premier League. Due to a number of withdrawals before the start of previous season no team was relegated to the Second League.
Kobrin, who finished 12th last year, withdrew to the amateur level at the end of 1996 due to lack of funds.
Promoted and withdrawn teams were replaced by two teams relegated from the Premier League (Obuvshchik Lida and Vedrish Rechytsa) and four newcomers from the Second League (BATE Borisov, Dnepr Rogachev, Veino Mogilev Raion and Belenergostroy Beloozyorsk). Thus league was again expanded to 16 teams.
Before the start of the season Obuvshchik Lida were renamed to FC Lida, Vedrish Rechytsa updated their name to Vedrich-97 Rechytsa, Kommunalnik Pinsk were renamed to Pinsk-900, Khimik Svetlogorsk to Kommunalnik Svetlogorsk, Stroitel Bereza to FC Bereza and newcomers FC Beloozyorsk to Belenergostroy Beloozyorsk.
Teams and locations
|Team||Location||Position in 1996|
|Lida||Lida||1Premier League, 15|
|Vedrich-97||Rechitsa||2Premier League, 16|
|BATE||Borisov||14Second League, Group A, 1|
|Veino||Mogilev Raion||15Second League, Group B, 1|
|Belenergostroy||Beloozyorsk||16Second League, Group A, 2|
|Dnepr||Rogachev||17Second League, Group B, 2|
||Promotion or relegation
|1||Gomel (P)||30||27||1||2||83||9||+74||82||Promotion to Premier League|
|2||BATE Borisov (P)||30||25||3||2||92||15||+77||78|
|11||Veino Mogilev Raion||30||9||4||17||27||53||−26||31|
|15||Lokomotiv Vitebsk (R)||30||5||7||18||17||50||−33||22||Relegation to Second League|
|16||Stroitel Starye Dorogi (R)||30||0||5||25||14||81||−67||5|
Rules for classification: 1st points; 2nd matches won; 3rd head-to-head (points, matches won, goal difference, goals scored); 4th goal difference; 5th goals scored
(C) = Champion; (R) = Relegated; (P) = Promoted; (E) = Eliminated; (O) = Play-off winner; (A) = Advances to a further round.
Only applicable when the season is not finished:
(Q) = Qualified to the phase of tournament indicated; (TQ) = Qualified to tournament, but not yet to the particular phase indicated; (RQ) = Qualified to the relegation tournament indicated; (DQ) = Disqualified from tournament.