FC Astana

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Astana
Astana Football Club logo.svg
Full nameAstana Football Club
Nickname(s)The Blue and Yellows[1]
Founded2009; 9 years ago (2009) as Lokomotiv Astana[2]
GroundAstana Arena
Capacity30,254[3]
OwnerSamruk-Kazyna
General managerSayan Khamitzhanov
ManagerGrigori Babayan (interim)
Roman Hryhorchuk (in vacancy)[4]
LeagueKazakhstan Premier League
20181st
WebsiteClub website
Current season

Astana Football Club (Kazakh: Astana Futbol Kluby) is a professional football club based in Astana. They play in the Kazakhstan Premier League, the highest level of Kazakh football. The club's home ground is the 30,254-seat Astana Arena stadium. The club colours, reflected in their badge and kit, are sky blue and yellow. Founded as Lokomotiv Astana in 2009, the club changed its name to Astana in 2011.[5] They are members of the Astana Presidential Club, an association of the main sports teams in Astana supported by the Sovereign Wealth Fund Samruk-Kazyna.[6]

The short history of the club already boasts five league titles, three Kazakhstan Cups and three Kazakhstan Super Cups. The club's strongest rivalry is with Kairat, among fans their matches are known as the Two Capitals Derby.[7]

History[edit]

Founding and first years (2009–2014)[edit]

On 27 December 2008, football clubs from Almaty Megasport and Alma-Ata announced they would merge to found a new club.[8] The club was named "FC Lokomotiv Astana" as the National Railway Company Kazakhstan Temir Zholy became a general sponsor.[8] Kazakhstan Temir Zholy in cooperation with City Council of Astana decided to move the club to the new building stadium in the capital of Kazakhstan.[8] Vakhid Masudov became the first head coach in the clubs history.[9] The club has benefited from a high salary role which has enabled them to attract players of status to the club. Andrey Tikhonov and Yegor Titov first of all came from the Russian Football Premier League.[10] Several more followed such as Patrick Ovie and Baffour Gyan. Maksim Shatskikh later arrived from Dynamo Kyiv in the Ukrainian Premier League which was again a very high-profile capture for the club.[11] The majority of their other players have arrived from other clubs of the Kazakhstan Premier League, mostly on free transfers from the clubs which were absorbed to make the club and several which went into bankruptcy.

On 8 March 2009, Lokomotiv played in the league's inaugural match against Kazakhmys in Satbayev. In March 2009, Vakhid Masudov was replaced by Vladimir Gulyamkhaidarov.[12] However, only two days after his appointment he was replaced by Russian specialist Sergei Yuran.[12] The club earned silver medals in their first season of play. On 14 November 2010, Holger Fach guided Astana to their first Kazakhstan Cup success.[13] However, they were ineligible for a UEFA license since they had not yet existed for at least three years.[14] So they were not able to start in the 2011–12 UEFA Europa League. On 2 March 2011, Astana beat Tobol 2–1 and won the Kazakhstan Super Cup for the first time.[15] In 2012, Miroslav Beránek led Astana to win their second Kazakhstan Cup.[16] In July 2013, the club made a debut in Europe playing in the first qualifying round of the UEFA Europa League against Botev Plovdiv. Astana lost both matches, 0–1 at home and 0–5 away.[17][18] On 4 July 2013, Astana officially joined to newly created Astana Presidential Sports Club, the organization supported by the Sovereign Wealth Fund Samruk-Kazyna to combine the main sports teams in Astana.[6][19]

Stoilov years: Domestic dominance and European breakthrough (2014–2018)[edit]

Match against AIK in 2014

On 22 June 2014, the club announced that former Botev Plovdiv manager Stanimir Stoilov was appointed as new head coach.[20] In 2014–15 European campaign, Astana played four ties in the UEFA Europa League qualifying stages. In the first round they beat Pyunik 6–1 on aggregate, then raised more than a few eyebrows in the second round, beating Hapoel Tel Aviv 3–1 on aggregate thanks to a convincing home leg win.[21] The third qualifying round saw Astana cruise past AIK, with a 4–1 aggregate score. In the play-off round, Astana was defeated by Villarreal.[22] On 1 November 2014, Astana became Kazakhstan Premier League champions for the first time in their history, securing the championship with a 3–0 home win against Kaisar.[23]

On 1 March 2015, Astana won the 2015 Kazakhstan Super Cup, beating Kairat 3–2 in a penalty shoot-out after the match ended with the score 0–0. On 26 August 2015, the club became the first team from Kazakhstan to reach the group stage of the UEFA Champions League, after beating APOEL 2–1 on aggregate in the play-off round.[24][25] They were drawn in Group C alongside Benfica, Atlético Madrid and Galatasaray,[26] where they managed to obtain four points in six games after four draws and two losses.[27] On 8 November 2015, Astana clinched their second Kazakhstan Premier League title beating Aktobe 1–0 at home in the last tour game.[28] On 9 December 2015, the club extended their contract with Stanimir Stoilov for the next two years.[29]

In the 2016 season, Astana was eliminated from UEFA Champions League after two stages, being defeated by Celtic in the third qualifying round 3–2 on aggregate. However, the club qualified for the UEFA Europa League group stage, beating BATE in the play-off round. On 26 October 2016, Astana won their third straight championship under Stoilov's rule. On 19 November 2016, the club won the 2016 Kazakhstan Cup, defeating Kairat 1–0. Their 2017 Champions League bid was stopped short once again by Celtic, this time in the playoff round. Following an embarrassing 5-0 rout at home, they failed to reach the group stages in a 8-4 defeat on aggregate. However, Astana reached another milestone by reaching the knockout phase of the 2017–18 UEFA Europa League after finishing second in the group phase. Astana extended further its domestic dominance by winning fourth consecutive title in the 2017 season.[30] On 8 January 2018, Stoilov signed a new contract with Astana.[31], but left the club on 1 March 2018 to take over the vacant Kazakhstan national football team's manager position.[32]

Post Stoilov years: (2018–)[edit]

On the same day as Stoilov was announced as the new manager of Kazakhstan, 1 March 2018, Grigori Babayan was announced as the Astana's interim manager.[33] On 1 June 2018, Astana announced Roman Hryhorchuk as the club's new manager.[34]

Stadium[edit]

Astana's current home venue is Astana Arena. The stadium has been Astana's home since the mid of the 2009 season, when the club moved from the Kazhymukan Munaitpasov Stadium.[35] The stadium holds 30,254 and has a retractable roof. The inaugural match at the new stadium was a 2–1 win over the Kazakhstan national under-21 football team in a friendly match. It is also serves as a national stadium for the Kazakhstan national football team.

A panorama of Astana Arena from the Eastern Stand, showing from left to right the Southern Stand, the Western Stand and the Northern Stand

Colours and crest[edit]

Crest used as Lokomotiv Astana

The team's original crest was implemented in 2009 consisting of the team's name, Footbal Club Lokomotiv Astana, on a blue round frame and a blue coloured letter "L" in the center, meaning railway track. As the result of renaming in 2011, the club adopted a new crest. The crest consisted of the team's name with uppercase letters on an image of the ball. This was accompanied by the words "football club" in Kazakh and Russian languages on the top and bottom of the crest. On 23 January 2013, the club presented a new crest, which replicated the style and colours of the Lokomotiv Astana crest. The crest consisted an image of the ball in a shanyrak style and two Kazakh national patterns on each side.[36] The present club crest was introduced on 10 March 2014, and incorporated the Astana Presidential Club crest's style and colours as well as BC Astana, Astana Pro Team and Astana Dakar Team.[37] The crest consists of the team's name, Astana Football Club, under a flying ball.

Blue and white were initially the club's primary colours, the team's nickname was the "Blue-and-White". Blue was used to accent the home jersey while white was the main colour of the team's away kit. During the 2012 season, Astana wore yellow and blue striped shirts and blue shorts as home kit and wholly blue away kit. In 2013, they retrieved original colours used from 2009 to 2011. In 2013, the club joined to Astana Presidential Club and adopted its colours. The present club colours are sky blue and yellow. Astana's current shirt sponsor is Sovereign Wealth Fund Samruk-Kazyna.[38] The club's first kit sponsorship was from national railway company Kazakhstan Temir Zholy who sponsored the club for a total of 4 years before ending the deal in 2013. The team's kit supplier is Adidas who have supplied the club kits since their inception.[38]

Period Kit manufacturer Shirt sponsor
2009–2014 Adidas Kazakhstan Temir Zholy
2014– Samruk-Kazyna

Players[edit]

First team squad[edit]

As of 28 July 2018.[39]

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
1 Kazakhstan GK Nenad Erić (captain)
2 Serbia DF Antonio Rukavina
5 Bosnia and Herzegovina DF Marin Aničić
6 Hungary MF László Kleinheisler
7 Kazakhstan MF Serikzhan Muzhikov
11 Brazil MF Pedro Henrique (loan from PAOK)
14 Croatia MF Marin Tomasov (loan from Rijeka)
15 Kazakhstan DF Abzal Beisebekov
18 Belarus MF Ivan Mayewski
19 Kazakhstan MF Baktiyar Zaynutdinov
20 Azerbaijan MF Richard Almeida
25 Kazakhstan DF Serhiy Malyi
No. Position Player
27 Kazakhstan DF Yuriy Logvinenko
30 Democratic Republic of the Congo FW Junior Kabananga (loan from Al-Nassr)
31 Kazakhstan MF Abay Zhunusov
32 Curaçao FW Rangelo Janga
35 Kazakhstan GK Aleksandr Mokin
44 Kazakhstan DF Yevgeny Postnikov
45 Kazakhstan FW Roman Murtazayev
53 Kazakhstan GK Stanislav Pavlov
55 Kazakhstan DF Talgat Kusyapov
77 Kazakhstan DF Dmitri Shomko (2nd captain)
80 Kazakhstan FW Vladislav Prokopenko
99 Kazakhstan FW Aleksey Shchotkin

Out on loan[edit]

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
8 Bosnia and Herzegovina MF Srđan Grahovac (at Rijeka until 31 December 2018)
28 Kazakhstan MF Yuriy Pertsukh (at Atyrau until 31 December 2018)
No. Position Player
Kazakhstan MF Marat Bystrov (at Tobol until 31 December 2018)

For recent transfers, see 2018 FC Astana season.

Non-playing staff[edit]

Management[edit]

Position Staff
General Manager Kazakhstan Sayan Khamitzhanov
Acting Manager Kazakhstan Kaisar Bekenov
Sporting Director Kazakhstan Alexander Konochkin

Last updated: 14 July 2017
Source: FC Astana

Coaching staff[edit]

Position Staff
Manager Ukraine Roman Hryhorchuk
Assistant Manager Kazakhstan Grigori Babayan
First Team Coach Bulgaria Tsanko Tsvetanov
First Team Coach Bulgaria Said Ibraimov
First Team Coach Kazakhstan Arkadi Bakulin
First Team Goalkeeping Coach Turkmenistan Evgeni Naboychenko
First Team Rehabilitologist Moldova Stepan Tupik
First Team Doctor Belarus Tadeush Perekhod
First Team Methodist Kazakhstan Magomed Nozadze
First Team Massagist Kazakhstan Sergei Larin
First Team Administrator Kazakhstan Vyacheslav Begunov

Last updated: 14 July 2017
Source: FC Astana

Notable managers[edit]

The following managers won at least one trophy when in charge of Astana:

Name Period Trophies
Germany Holger Fach 2010–2011 Kazakhstan Cup, Kazakhstan Super Cup
Czech Republic Miroslav Beránek 2012–2013 Kazakhstan Cup
Bulgaria Stanimir Stoilov 2014–2018 Kazakhstan Premier League (4), Kazakhstan Cup, Kazakhstan Super Cup
Kazakhstan Grigori Babayan 2018 Kazakhstan Super Cup

Honours[edit]

Winners (5): 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018 (record)
Winners (3): 2010, 2012, 2016
Winners (3): 2011, 2015, 2018

Statistics[edit]

Seasons[edit]

Season Rank P W D L F A GD Pts Cup EL CL
2009 2 26 20 0 6 54 24 30 60 2R
2010 4 32 14 8 10 41 28 13 50 Won
2011 4 32 16 7 9 50 37 13 33 2R
2012 5 26 13 7 6 34 24 10 46 Won
2013 2 32 19 5 8 56 28 28 38 QF 1QR
2014 1 32 18 10 4 63 26 37 45 SF PO
2015 1 32 20 7 5 55 26 39 46 Runner-up GS
2016 1 32 23 4 5 47 21 26 73 Won GS 3QR
2017 1 33 25 4 4 74 21 51 76 R16 R32 PO
2018 1 33 24 5 4 68 22 40 77 R16 in PO
Key

Rank = Rank in the Kazakhstan Premier League; P = Played; W = Win; D = Draw; L = Loss; F = Goals for; A = Goals against; GD = Goal difference; Pts = Points; Cup = Kazakhstan Cup; EL = UEFA Europa League; CL = UEFA Champions League.
in = Still in competition; — = Not attended; 1R = 1st round; 2R = 2nd round; 3R = 3rd round; 1QR = 1st qualifying round; 2QR = 2nd qualifying round; 3QR = 3rd qualifying round; PO = Play-off round; GS = Group stage; ; R32 = Round of 32; R16 = Round of 16; QF = Quarterfinals; SF = Semifinals; F = Final.

European record[edit]

As of match played 04 October 2018
Competition Pld W D L GF GA GD
UEFA Champions League 28 10 10 8 32 36 –4
UEFA Europa League 29 10 7 12 39 45 –6
Total 57 20 17 20 71 81 –10
Key

1QR = 1st qualifying round; 2QR = 2nd qualifying round; 3QR = 3rd qualifying round; PO = Play-off round; GS = Group stage; R32 = Round of 32.

UEFA coefficient[edit]

The table shows the position of FC Astana (highlighted), based on their UEFA coefficient club ranking, and four clubs, which are closest to FC Astana's position (the two clubs with the higher coefficient and the two with the lower coefficient).

Rank Team Points
48 Germany Borussia Mönchengladbach 29,000
49 Turkey Fenerbahçe 28,500
50 Kazakhstan Astana 27,500
51 Czech Republic Viktoria Plzeň 27.000
52 Russia Lokomotiv Moscow 26.500

As of 9 November 2018.[41]

Records[edit]

As of match played 14 September 2017

  • Record League victory – 7–0 v. Atyrau (9 September 2017)
  • Record League defeat – 0–5 v. Irtysh (26 May 2011)[42]
  • Most League wins in a row – 8, 7 April 2009 – 30 April 2009[43]
  • Most League appearances – 130, Marat Shakhmetov 2009–14[44]
  • Most appearances overall – 150, Marat Shakhmetov 2009–14[44]
  • Most goals scored in a League season – 16, Foxi Kéthévoama 2014[45]
  • Most goals scored in a season overall – 20, Foxi Kéthévoama 2014[45]
  • Youngest first-team player – Madi Zhakypbayev, 15 years, 11 months, 21 days[46]
  • Oldest first-team player – Andrey Tikhonov, 39 years, 9 days[47]

Most appearances[edit]

As of Match played 11 November 2018

Players played over 50 competitive, professional matches only. Appearances as substitute (goals in parentheses) included in total.

Name Years League Cup Super Cup Europe Total
1 Kazakhstan Nenad Erić 2011–present 184 (0) 16 (0) 5 (0) 51 (0) 256 (0)
2 Kazakhstan Abzal Beisebekov 2009, 2012–present 171 (3) 22 (1) 5 (0) 43 (1) 241 (5)
3 Kazakhstan Dmitri Shomko 2011, 2014–present 147 (7) 7 (0) 5 (0) 52 (4) 211 (11)
4 Kazakhstan Tanat Nusserbayev 2011–2016 152 (46) 18 (5) 3 (0) 24 (3) 197 (54)
5 Bosnia and Herzegovina Marin Aničić 2014–present 134 (3) 7 (0) 4 (0) 47 (6) 192 (9)
6 Ghana Patrick Twumasi 2013, 2014, 2015–2018 123 (48) 9 (6) 4 (0) 35 (15) 171 (69)
7 Kazakhstan Serikzhan Muzhikov 2014, 2015–present 104 (14) 9 (0) 3 (0) 49 (2) 165 (16)
8 Kazakhstan Yevgeny Postnikov 2014–present 105 (1) 10 (0) 4 (0) 41 (2) 160 (3)
9 Kazakhstan Marat Shakhmetov 2009–2014 131 (6) 17 (0) 1 (0) 2 (0) 151 (6)
10 Central African Republic Foxi Kéthévoama 2012, 2013–2015 109 (26) 13 (5) 2 (1) 22 (2) 146 (34)

Top goalscorers[edit]

As of Match played 11 November 2018
Competitive, professional matches only, appearances including substitutes appear in brackets.
Name Years League Cup Super Cup Europe Total
1 Ghana Patrick Twumasi 2013, 2014, 2015–2018 48 (123) 6 (9) 0 (4) 15 (35) 69 (171)
2 Kazakhstan Tanat Nusserbayev 2011–2016 46 (152) 5 (18) 0 (3) 3 (24) 54 (197)
3 Democratic Republic of the Congo Junior Kabananga 2015–2018, 2018–present 29 (63) 3 (4) 0 (1) 6 (42) 38 (110)
4 Central African Republic Foxi Kéthévoama 2012, 2013–2015 26 (109) 5 (13) 1 (2) 2 (22) 34 (146)
5 Moldova Igor Bugaiov 2010–2011 18 (57) 6 (6) 2 (1) - (-) 26 (64)
6 Croatia Marin Tomasov 2017, 2018–Present 16 (41) 0 (0) 2 (1) 4 (22) 22 (64)
7 Serbia Đorđe Despotović 2016–2018 14 (53) 3 (4) 0 (2) 3 (19) 20 (78)
8 Kazakhstan Sergei Ostapenko 2010, 2012–2014, 2015 16 (82) 2 (13) 1 (1) - (-) 19 (96)
9 Montenegro Damir Kojašević 2012, 2013–2015 12 (61) 5 (10) 0 (1) 0 (5) 17 (77)
10 Colombia Roger Cañas 2014–2017 12 (91) 1 (6) 0 (2) 3 (28) 16 (127)
10 Kazakhstan Serikzhan Muzhikov 2014, 2015–Present 14 (105) 0 (9) 0 (3) 2 (48) 16 (165)
10 Kazakhstan Roman Murtazayev 2017–Present 14 (60) 0 (1) 0 (1) 2 (20) 16 (82)

Partnerships[edit]

On 11 November 2013 it was announced that Astana had partnered with the La Liga team Real Sociedad to cooperate in terms of exchange of skills and knowledge, organization of friendly matches, training camps for youth development and grassroots football.
On 29 April 2014 it was announced that Astana Presidential Club had signed a memorandum of cooperation with the Galatasaray Sports Club. The memorandum chiefly provides for cooperation between the Astana and Galatasaray S.K. football departments.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Team profile". UEFA.com. Retrieved 25 July 2015.
  2. ^ Club History at official website
  3. ^ "Astana Arena". StadiumDB.com. Retrieved 16 September 2017.
  4. ^ http://vesti.kz/kazfutbol/255041/
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  6. ^ a b Ilyas Omarov (11 March 2011). "Astana Presidential Sports Club launched". The Astana Times. Archived from the original on 24 April 2015. Retrieved 10 March 2014.
  7. ^ Tlek Adryshev (2 May 2017). "Two Capitals Derby: Astana Share Spoils With Kairat Thanks to Last-Gasp Equaliser". Football Federation of Astana (FFA). Retrieved 6 September 2017.
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  9. ^ "Мегаспорт" перебазировался в Астану ["Megasport" rebased to Astana] (in Russian). TengriNews.kz. 26 December 2008. Retrieved 27 July 2015.
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  24. ^ "Astana make history as Maksimović stuns APOEL". UEFA.com. 27 August 2015. Retrieved 27 August 2015.
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  29. ^ "Stanimir Stoilov signs new deal with FC Astana". Kazinform. 9 December 2015. Retrieved 31 August 2016.
  30. ^ Anuar Abdrakhmanov (8 November 2017). "FC Astana wins fourth straight Kazakhstan Premier League title". The Astana Times. Retrieved 10 November 2017.
  31. ^ "Астана продолжит сотрудничество со Станимиром Стойловым!". fca.kz (in Russian). FC Astana. 8 January 2018. Retrieved 8 January 2018.
  32. ^ "Стоилов возглавил сборную Казахстана". fca.kz (in Russian). FC Astana. 1 March 2018. Retrieved 1 March 2018.
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  35. ^ "Astana Arena". StadiumGuide.com. Retrieved 1 July 2014.
  36. ^ У футбольного клуба «Астана» изменилась эмблема [FC Astana changed its emblem] (in Russian). Zakon.kz. 23 January 2013. Retrieved 20 August 2014.
  37. ^ ФК «Астана» презентовал новый состав, форму и логотип [FC Astana presented new squad, kits and logo] (in Russian). Kazinform. 10 March 2014. Retrieved 3 July 2014.
  38. ^ a b Спонсоры и партнеры [Sponsors and partners] (in Russian). FC Astana. Retrieved 3 July 2014.
  39. ^ "Основной состав" [First Team Squad]. FC Astana. Retrieved 8 July 2014.
  40. ^ a b c "FC Astana Steckbrief". Worldfootball. Retrieved 27 July 2014.
  41. ^ "UEFA rankings for club competitions". UEFA.com. Retrieved 1 August 2018.
  42. ^ "Самые крупные победы и поражения" [Record league victories and defeats]. FC Astana. Retrieved 26 July 2015.
  43. ^ "Командные рекорды за 1 сезон" [Team records in a one season]. FC Astana. Retrieved 26 July 2015.
  44. ^ a b "Рекордсмены "Астаны"" [Record-holders of "Astana"]. FC Astana. Retrieved 26 July 2015.
  45. ^ a b "Личные рекорды за 1 сезон" [Personal records ina single season]. FC Astana. Retrieved 26 July 2015.
  46. ^ "15-летний футболист "Астаны" побил клубный рекорд Абзала Бейсебекова" [15-years old football player beat Beisebekov's youngest player record of Astana]. Vesti.kz. 14 March 2016. Retrieved 16 September 2017.
  47. ^ "Самые молодые и возрастные футболисты" [Youngest and oldest players]. FC Astana. Retrieved 26 July 2015.
  48. ^ "Real Sociedad y FC Astana firman un acuerdo de colaboración" [Real Sociedad and FC Astana signed a collaboration agreement] (in Spanish). Real Sociedad. 20 November 2013. Retrieved 1 July 2014.
  49. ^ "Galatasaray, Astana sports clubs plan to step up cooperation". Kazinform. 29 April 2014. Retrieved 1 July 2014.

External links[edit]