Oleksandr Zavarov

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Oleksandr Zavarov
Oleksandr Zavarov.jpg
Personal information
Full name Oleksandr Anatoliyovych Zavarov
Date of birth (1961-04-20) 20 April 1961 (age 54)
Place of birth Luhansk, Ukrainian SSR, Soviet Union
Height 1.70 m (5 ft 7 in)
Playing position Midfielder
Club information
Current team
Ukraine (assistant)
Youth career
1968–1977 Zorya Luhansk
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1977–1979 Zorya Luhansk 23 (7)
1980–1981 SKA Rostov 64 (13)
1982 Zorya Luhansk 30 (10)
1983–1988 Dynamo Kyiv 136 (36)
1988–1990 Juventus 60 (7)
1990–1995 Nancy 133 (23)
1995–1998 Saint-Dizier ? (17)
National team
1985–1990 USSR 41 (6)
Teams managed
1995–2003 Saint Dizier CO
2003–2004 FC Wil
2004 FC Astana-1964
2005 FC Metalist Kharkiv
2006–2010 FC Arsenal Kyiv
2012 Ukraine (caretaker)
2013– Ukraine (assistant)

* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.

† Appearances (goals)

Oleksandr Anatoliyovych Zavarov, also spelt Aleksandr Anatoljević Zavarov (Ukrainian: Олександр Анатолійович Заваров) – (born 20 April 1961 in Luhansk, Ukrainian SSR) is a former Ukrainian football midfielder and the former head coach at FC Arsenal Kyiv. In 1986 he was named the best footballer in the USSR and Ukraine and the 6th best footballer in Europe according to France Football. Zavarov is widely regarded to be among the greatest footballers in the history of the USSR and Ukraine, and in 2000 he was included in the Ukrainian Team of The Century according to a poll by the Ukrainsky Futbol weekly.



Zavarov started off his career in his home city of Zorya Luhansk. He played in the USSR Premier League for Zorya Luhansk (1977–79, 1982), and also SKA Rostov (1980–81). In 1983–88, he played for the Soviet-Ukrainian giants, Dynamo Kyiv, with whom he won the UEFA Cup Winners' Cup in 1985–86, scoring in the final itself. Zavarov later played for Juventus between 1988 and 1990, winning the Coppa Italia and the UEFA Cup under Dino Zoff, wearing the number 10 shirt which had formerly belonged to club legend Michel Platini.[1] He subsequently transferred to Nancy in 1990, where he remained for five seasons, before finally moving to Saint-Dizier in 1995, retiring after three seasons, in 1998.


Zavarov had 41 caps for the USSR, scoring six goals including two in the World Cup finals in 1986 and 1990. He also played in the Euro 1988 in which the USSR team were runners-up.


Zavarov began his coaching career with Saint Dizier CO as a player-coach. He had a short spell as a head coach of FC Wil in 2003–04, however because he lacked the necessary UEFA licence, he was given the position of director of football with the club. He is currently manager of Ukrainian team Arsenal Kyiv.

Style of play[edit]

A creative, quick, agile and skilful midfielder,[2][3] Zavarov was primarily known for his excellent technical ability, two-footedness, stamina, and tactical intelligence, and was usually deployed as an attacking midfielder or as a supporting striker, although he was also capable of playing as a deep-lying playmaker, due to his versatility, vision, and long passing accuracy.[4][5][6] Zavarov played a key role in Valeri Lobanovski's successes with Dynamo Kyiv, and his dribbling skills and playmaking ability led his Dynamo Kyiv coach to compare him to Diego Maradona.[4][5]

Despite the talent he demonstrated with Dynamo Kyiv and at Euro 1988,[3] and his reputation as one of the greatest players to ever come out of the Soviet Union,[7] his time with Juventus was less successful, and he failed to live up to initial expectations in Serie A.[2][8][9] Due to his inconsistent displays and his lack of accuracy in front of goal,[10][9] he drew criticism from the press, who also singled out his surprisingly poor work-rate and movement off the ball;[6][8] he was also accused of lacking confidence,[9] and of not being an effective assist-provider for the team.[11] Because of his timid character, it was also argued that he lacked the necessary leadership skills to carry the team,[9] and fill the void left by Michel Platini in the advanced midfield playmaking role during the post-Trapattoni crisis.[1]



Dynamo Kyiv





Soviet Union



Ballon d'Or[edit]


  1. ^ a b Simone Bianco (28 June 2013). "La chimera di Magrin" [Magrin's Chimera] (in Italian). Il Corriere della Sera. Retrieved 10 September 2015. 
  2. ^ a b Furio Zara. "Zavarov, un talento rimasto incompiuto" (in Italian). Il Corriere dello Sport. Retrieved 10 September 2015. 
  3. ^ a b Giulio Di Feo; Andrea Schianchi (4 June 2012). "Il trampolino di lancio Zavarov, Rooney, Villa quando l' Euro fa volare" (in Italian). La Gazzetta dello Sport. Retrieved 10 September 2015. 
  4. ^ a b Stefano Bedeschi (26 April 2010). "Gli eroi in bianconero: Aleksandr ZAVAROV" (in Italian). Tutto Juve. Retrieved 10 September 2015. 
  5. ^ a b Luca Argentieri (27 January 1987). "NUOVI MAESTRI ALL' OPERA" (in Italian). La Repubblica. Retrieved 10 September 2015. 
  6. ^ a b Licio Granello (28 September 1988). "PARLACI DI TE UOMO DI KIEV" (in Italian). La Repubblica. Retrieved 10 September 2015. 
  7. ^ Gabriella Mancini (27 October 2000). "Lo Shevchenko segreto" (in Italian). La Gazzetta dello Sport. Retrieved 10 September 2015. 
  8. ^ a b "LO CHIAMAVANO SACHA IL BIDONE" (in Italian). La Repubblica. 12 September 1989. Retrieved 10 September 2015. 
  9. ^ a b c d Marco E. Ansaldo (11 April 1990). "'FATEMI TORNARE NELLA MIA KIEV'" (in Italian). La Repubblica. Retrieved 10 September 2015. 
  10. ^ "DUE CAMPIONI DA SCOPRIRE" (in Italian). La Repubblica. 30 September 1988. Retrieved 10 September 2015. 
  11. ^ MARCO E. ANSALDO (1 March 1989). "CERCANDO IL VERO ZAVAROV" (in Italian). La Repubblica. Retrieved 10 September 2015. 
  12. ^ "Oleksandr Anatoliyovych Zavarov" (in Russian). ukrainiansoccer.net. Retrieved 15 September 2008. 
  13. ^ "Cup Winners Cup Top Scorers". RSSSF. Retrieved 15 September 2008. 

External links[edit]