Former international referee Sergei Khusainov about the “kitchen” of big football - especially for the VChK-OGPU telegram channel and

The matches of the Russian championship had barely resumed when they were marked by scandals. People with whistles stupefied even seasoned specialists, journalists, the football players themselves, and coaches. However, this is a common, and therefore no less disgusting, practice of all sorts of “bugs”, opportunists, etc. from the popular game.


- The work of referee Kazartsev during the recent match “Rostov” - “Krasnodar” caused a very wide, even scandalous resonance. He handed out cards to Krasnodar players en masse in the first half. Thus, according to our observations, he prepared the ground for the removal of the player in the second half. And so it happened. The guests played outnumbered until the end of the match. In the end we lost. A common thing for not very competent, maybe dishonest people with whistles... Where, where and how do they get such, so to speak, “referees”?

- We need to look at who prepares them and how, promotes them, and lobbies the interests “at the top.” How do they get into refereeing? Yes, “out of friendship, acquaintance.” Skill level is almost not taken into account. It must be said that no one and nothing passes by St. Petersburg managers, in other words, “craftsmen,” unnoticed. “Oh, you’re a good referee, right? Do you want to referee the major league? Well, you know our prices...” With this approach, skilled people are not needed at all. Drive “grandma” to someone’s “paw”, and that’s it. You will judge, as already said, the major league.

- Honest people have been barred from entering big-time football, or what?

- The question is naive. Evaluate and draw conclusions after the above. I would pose the question differently: what did, for example, the owner of Krasnodar Sergei Galitsky do to Russian football? His team, as well as others, has foreign players. How should he explain to them such “work” of domestic judges? “The existing system of relations”?

The Krasnodar team took the lead in the championship relatively recently. It was necessary to somehow “slow down” the obstinate ones who challenged the recognized favorites. Everything is done for the good and in the name of Gazprem, as I call this organization.

- Do any of the higher officials give instructions on who and how to judge? Who should I be more loyal to, should I “drown” one of my rivals? I wonder if “left bonuses” are provided for showing loyalty, in your opinion?

- According to my information, on the eve of matches, the appointment commission unobtrusively advises referees “not to offend specific teams with severity”, while others, on the contrary, “are more principled”, according to the full rigor of football law. These are the harsh realities of football in Russia.

Loyalty bonuses? I would say that the so-called wealthy fans of the clubs thank specific referees...


- It is known that in Europe things are better and cleaner. That the judges there are supposedly crystal honest, incorruptible, independent. And not a single president of even the most respected club has the right to put pressure on them. For violation of unspoken laws, strict sanctions are provided, including disqualification of the teams themselves, large monetary fines, etc. Is it impossible for us to do this? Is the mentality different?

- That's exactly the mentality. Everything is saturated with corruption. Its metastases have penetrated deeply into the fabric of domestic football; no urgent “operation” will help. We will never get out of the “marsh swamp”. There is no one here to fight the negativity. Ministry of Internal Affairs, FSB? Do not make me laugh. They haven't done this yet.

The situation seems especially hopeless when, well, “very effective managers” loom on the horizon! I come as part of the refereeing team to St. Petersburg. And there Mutko calls me to the apartment. Takes you to a drinking establishment. “Here, Serge, this is my bar, I am its owner. Shall we drink beer? This is on game day.

It is clear what such “hospitality” was intended for. “Vitaly Leontyevich, are you out of your mind?” - I remarked to the strange gentleman. However, why strange? A normal way of life for him and communicating with the “right” football people. Will you condemn him? Useless. They, from St. Petersburg, have been living like this all the time for as long as I can remember.

And stories about the integrity of, for example, Italian referees are long gone. Suffice it to recall the story of the then president of Juventus Moggi. People from his entourage directly brought cash to the local referees so that they would “work” in favor of the Turin club in Serie A matches.

Law enforcement officers tracked the movements of these mafiosi, listened to their conversations, and recorded the transfer of money. As a result, the dealers were caught. Moggi himself was excommunicated from football for life, and some of his particularly zealous assistants were imprisoned. The club was stripped of its championship title in the 2006-2007 season.

And they even sent Juve, famous throughout Europe, to a lower league for all the fraud. Here, I repeat, no one will unwind the snake’s ball; apparently, they are not yet ripe. And they are unlikely to ever ripen.

- In general, the story with Moji and his teams oh a little strange. It seemed that Juve could become a champion even without any bribery of referees, but a powerful team - in selecting performances.

- Yes, I don’t see anything particularly strange. It’s just that the leaders of the Turin team decided, as they say in such cases, to play it safe. To “butter up” the referees and some members of the football federation. To make the path to the coveted title easier. But it turned out how it turned out.

Italy is no exception. They “work” with referees in Spain, which is vaunted by football standards, and at the international level too. At one time, the famous arbitrator Wharton from Scotland flew to a seminar in Sochi. He told me that he was “lucky” to work four times at Champions League matches involving Real Madrid.

So, representatives of the Madrid club freely presented the Scottish referee with a luxurious gold watch. They conspiratorially said that if the outcome of the match was favorable for Real, a similar item would be given to his wife as a sign of gratitude. But the referee’s wife never got the gold watch – for obvious reasons.

- Good, although not good enough. Could you head the refereeing department in the Russian championship if you were called? To try to improve the situation, select honest, qualified arbitrators, train them properly, etc.

- Are you kidding me, are you openly laughing? In the structures of big football in Russia, among officials, first of all, it is even forbidden to say my last name out loud. It's clear why. Khusainov is an absolutely foreign body, and besides, I’m not from St. Petersburg...