Nikolai Borisovich Kulikov

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Nikolai Borisovich Kulikov (Russian: Куликов, Николай Борисович, April 25, 1953 in Moscow, USSR - August 11, 1979 in Dniprodzerzhynsk, Ukraine SSR) was a Soviet footballer. Kulikov played for FC Pakhtakor Tashkent as a defender from 1976 to 1979, before he died in a mid-air plane crash in August 1979. He was classified as a Master of Sport of the USSR in 1979.

Early life and career[edit]

At twelve Nikolai Kulikov was farmed to FC Dinamo (Moscow); his first coaches were the famous Soviet football players Kesarev and Solovyev. In 1974 Nikolai Kulikov, a young half-back, was invited to FC Khanki (Khorezm, Uzbek SSR) where he played for two seasons. In 1976 Nikolai Kulikov successfully played for FC Yangier (Yangier, Uzbek SSR) and was recruited by FC Pakhtakor (Tashkent, Uzbek SSR). In 1977 FC Pakhtakor demonstrated an excellent team play and qualified for the USSR Top League. Nikolai Kulikov invaluably contributed to FC Pakhtakor success with twenty-one matches in defence and one goal. He was highly praised for high mobility, good play thinking, and reciprocity and sincere friendship with teammates.

Death[edit]

At 26 died together with sixteen FC Pakhtakor players and staff in a mid-air collision over Kurilovka (Dneprodzerzhinsk, Ukrainian SSR). Buried in his patrimony Krivskoye (near Obninsk, Borovskiy District, Kaluga Oblast, Russia).