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|Founded||27 December 1934|
|Folded||25 December 1991|
|Headquarters||Moscow, Russian SFSR|
|UEFA affiliation||1954 (since 1992 as Russian Football Union)|
|President||(see chairmen list below)|
The Football Federation of the USSR (Russian: Федерация футбола СССР) was a governing body of football in the Soviet Union and since 1972 the main governing body of football in the country. The Federation was created late in 1934 by the decision of the Supreme Council of Physical Culture of the USSR (Russian: Высший Совет Физической Культуры, VSFK) as its sports section governing specifically football. It was the only organization that obtained recognition of FIFA in 1946.
After the establishment of the Soviet regime in the former Russian Empire all its former affiliations abroad were discontinued. Football life in the country however did not stop. In July 1920 the first championship of the Russian SFSR took place, won by the collective city team of Moscow. The general government and organization of sports in Soviet Union was intended to be conducted by the All-Union Council of Physical Culture (VSFK) that was formed in 1920. In September 1923 the first championship of the Soviet Union took place which was won also by the Moscow team. With appointed of Nikolai Semashko as chairman of VSFK, a conflict ensued between him and the chairman of Red Sportintern Nikolay Podvoisky. Later this argument joined couple of other groups among which were Komsomol that was in opposition to Podvoisky since 1922 (at times of Vsevobuch) and various trade unions.
On 27 May 1934, the "Distinguished Master of Sports" achievement award was established, and given to eight footballers that same year.
On 27 December 1934, the All-Union Council of Physical Culture (VSFK) of the Central Executive Committee of the Soviet Union (TsIK USSR) established a special public organization – the Football Section of the USSR – to take charge of football events in the country. In addition, there was also the Football Directorate of the Soviet Sports Committee, subordinated directly to the Soviet government.
First memorable exhibition games
- Ya. Trusevych
- K. Fomin (captain)
- D. Kirillov
- M. Fomin
- V. Fomin
- V. Hreber
- M. Makhynya
- P. Parovyshnikov
- K. Shchehodsky
- P. Laiko
- V. Shylovsky
Next month a collective team of Prague visited the Soviet Union playing against team of Leningrad, Moscow, and UkrSSR. In January 1936 the Moscow team consisting of players from Dynamo Moscow and Spartak Moscow visited Racing Paris to which they lost 1:2. A single goal for the Soviets was scored by Yakushyn. Team squad of Moscow (2-3-5):
- A. Akimov
- Al. Starostin (captain)
- L. Korchebokov
- A. Ryomin
- And. Starostin
- S. Leuta
- A. Lapshyn (V. Stepanov, 46)
- M. Yakushyn
- V. Smirnov
- V. Pavlov (M. Velichkin, 86)
- S. Ilyin
all coached by M. Kvashnin and N. Starostin.
In 1936 the Section of Football of USSR established the Soviet Top League as a championship among teams of Volunteer Sports Sovcieties (DSO) and agencies introducing four hierarchal groups (leagues) of eight teams.
On 22 July 1937 for the first time TsIK USSR given awards to 38 best Soviet sportsmen among which were 12 football players. The first recipient of Order of Lenin among football players became Nikolai Starostin. The Order of the Red Banner of Labour received Alexander Starostin and Sergei Ilyin, other nine players received Order of the Badge of Honor.
During World War II (1941–1944) the main football events were suspended, but there were several regional competitions. When the Soviet Union was liberated from the occupation of Nazi Germany in August 1944 the next national cup competition took place as the first official post-war football event.
In July 1946 the Football Section of the USSR was admitted to FIFA on the proposition of delegates from Yugoslavia and Czechoslovakia and on 27 September 1947 the USSR was awarded a permanent seat of the vice-president of FIFA which was taken by Valentin Granatkin. The main national football team of the Soviet Union however did not compete at the FIFA World Cup until 1958. The first coach appointed was Boris Arkadiev who in 1952 led the team to the Olympic games in Helsinki. He later along with several other football specialist was accused of sabotaging the team that was eliminated in the tournament's Round of 16.
In May 1959 the Football Section of the USSR was reorganized as the Football Federation of the USSR.
In 1960 the national team of the Soviet Union won the first continental championship beating the national team of Yugoslavia 2:1 in extra time.
In 1963 Lev Yashin became the first Soviet player to be awarded the Ballon d'Or.
For the first time in 1965–66 season the Soviet football clubs debuted in the European international football competitions.
In 1972 the Football Federation of the USSR became a government agency of the State Committee of Sports (Goskomsport). However, because Granatkin continued to chair the Football Federation, that reorganization did not drew much attention from FIFA.
In 1988 Lev Yashin received the golden order of FIFA "For service" and in March 1990 was recognized as the Hero of Socialist Labour. Next month the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet awarded the Hero of Socialist Labour to Nikolai Starostin as well.
On 8 February 1992 the federation was recognized as the parent association of the newly established Russian Football Union (RFS). In July of the same year the executive committee of FIFA confirmed the succession of the Soviet federation as the Russian Football Union and readmitted it under the new name and statute.
- Football Federation of the Ukrainian SSR (1959?), succeeded by the Football Federation of Ukraine in December 1991
- Football Federation of the Byelorussian SSR, succeeded by the Football Federation of Belarus in 1989
- Football Federation of the Kazakh SSR (1959), succeeded by the Football Federation of Kazakhstan in 1989
- Football Federation of the Georgian SSR (1936), succeeded by the Georgian Football Federation in February 1990
- Football Federation of the Uzbek SSR (1946), succeeded by the Uzbekistan Football Federation
- Football Federation of the Tajik SSR (1936), succeeded by the Tajikistan Football Federation
- Vyacheslav Koloskov (January 1990 – 1991)
- L. Lebedev (May 1989 – January 1990)
- Boris Topornin (December 1980 – May 1989)
- B.Fedosov (March 1973 – December 1980)
- Valentin Granatkin (June 1968 – March 1973)
- L. Nikonov (January 1968 – June 1968)
- V. Moshkarkin (July 1967 – January 1968)
- N. Riashentsev (January 1964 – July 1967)
- Valentin Granatkin (6 May 1959 – January 1964)
Chairmen of Football Section of the USSR (27 December 1934 – 6 May 1959)
- Valentin Granatkin (1950 – 6 May 1959)
- Mikhail Kozlov (1937 – ?)
- Aleksei Sokolov (27 December 1934 – 1937)
Chairmen of the Football Directorate of the Soviet Sports Committee (27 December 1934 – 1972)
The first team coaches
- Boris Arkadiev 1952 Olympics (qualifying and final tournaments)
- Gavriil Kachalin 1956 Olympics (qualifying and final tournaments), 1958 World Cup (qualifying and final tournaments), 1960 European Championship (qualifying and final tournaments), 1962 World Cup (qualifying and final tournaments)
- Nikita Simonyan (acting)
- Konstantin Beskov 1964 European championship (qualifying and final tournaments)
- Nikolai Morozov 1966 World Cup (qualifying and final tournaments)
- Mikhail Yakushin 1968 European championship (qualifying and final tournaments)
- Gavriil Kachalin 1970 World Cup (qualifying and final tournaments)
- Valentin Nikolayev 1972 European championship (qualifying tournament)
- Aleksandr Ponomarev 1972 European championship (final tournament), 1972 Olympics (final tournament)
- Yevgeniy Goryansky 1974 World Cup (qualifying tournament, failed to qualify)
- Konstantin Beskov (replaced by Valeriy Lobanovsky) 1976 European championship (qualifying tournament, failed to qualify), 1976 Olympics (final tournament)
- Nikita Simonyan (replaced by Konstantin Beskov) 1978 World Cup (qualifying tournament, failed to qualify) 1980 European Championship (qualifying tournament, failed to qualify)
- Konstantin Beskov 1982 World Cup (qualifying and final tournaments)
- Valeriy Lobanovsky 1984 European championship (qualifying tournament, failed to qualify)
- Eduard Malofeyev 1986 World Cup (qualifying tournament)
- Valeriy Lobanovsky 1986 World Cup (final tournament), 1988 European championship (qualifying and final tournaments), 1990 World Cup (qualifying and final tournaments)
- Anatoliy Byshovets 1992 European championship (qualifying and final tournaments)
- Svetlana Kuznetsova. "Appeared on grounds of this physical culture brawl" ("Возникли на почве этой физкультурной драки"). Kommersant.ru. 15 April 2013
- Football of double subordination Archived 16 October 2012 at the Wayback Machine
- "History of the Football Federation of Kazakhstan". Archived from the original on 3 March 2016. Retrieved 21 April 2013.