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    ‘Firms’: Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Russian Football Fans

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    According to unofficial figures obtained by Sputnik, members of each and every Russian fan club or “firm” took part in the recent clashes at Euro 2016 in France. Sputnik takes a brief look at these organized groups of “ultras” who created such a big buzz during the recent Russia-England game in Marseille.

    In the walkup to Euro-2016 these ultras arrived in France in groups of five to ten to “root” for Team Russia.

    Spartak Moscow FC (red —and —white)

    Spartak's fans on the stand of Kuban Stadium at the Russian Premiere League 8th round match between FC Kuban Krasnodar and FC Spartak Moscow
    © Sputnik / Mihail Mokrushin
    Spartak's fans on the stand of Kuban Stadium at the Russian Premiere League 8th round match between FC Kuban Krasnodar and FC Spartak Moscow

    1.Union – “Yu”

    Founded in 2000, it is the biggest union of Spartak’s “firms.” “Yu” has a core group of up to 300 diehards. Their biggest and most violent fight was against the Yaroslavka “firm” of CSKA Moscow FC fans, in 2001.

    2. School

    Founded in 2005, it is comprised of 50-100 “soldiers.” Originally built around a group of friends, the brigade grew bigger and bigger scoring victories and suffering defeats. Nowadays, the School is one of Spartak FC’s most active fan groups.

    3. Wild Boars

    Footboal fans club Wild Boars
    Footboal fans club Wild Boars

    Founded in 1998 it is comprised of 30-60 “soldiers.” Not much is known about them. They have previously demanded the removal of info about them from football websites.

    4. Gladiators Firm 96

    Founded in 1996, it is one of the oldest around and is comprised of 50 “soldiers.”  In Marseille they joined forces with members of Oryol FC, longtime friends of Spartak FC.

    CSKA FC (red-and blue)

    CSKA Moscow's fans during a Russian Football Premier League match against Amkar Perm. (File)
    © Sputnik / Igor Kataev
    CSKA Moscow's fans during a Russian Football Premier League match against Amkar Perm. (File)

    1. Yaroslavka – “Y”

    Founded in 1996, it has a core group of 150-200 “soldiers.” Their most memorable fight was against members of the now-defunct Flint’s Crew “firm” of Spartak fans. Outnumbered and surprised, Flint’s Crew beat a hasty retreat.

    2. Einfach Jugend

    Footboal fans club Jugend
    Footboal fans club Jugend

    The second strongest group of CSKA fans. Average age – 19. Ambitious. Founded around 2001. Exact membership unknown.

    3. Gallant Steeds

    Founded in 2000 in the Kuntsevo and Beskudnikovo districts of Moscow to take on Spartak fans from neighboring areas. Went on to become one of the biggest and most active “firms” in Moscow.

    4. Shady Horse

    Members of Shady Horse “firm” in Moscow and of Music Hall in St. Petersburg.

    Zenit  St. Petersburg FC (blue-and-white)

    Zenit fans at Lokomotiv stadium in a 14th round Russian Championship of Russia Premier League match between FC Volga (Nizhny Novgorod) and FC Zenit (St. Petersburg). (File)
    © Sputnik / Vyacheslav Evdokimov
    Zenit fans at Lokomotiv stadium in a 14th round Russian Championship of Russia Premier League match between FC "Volga" (Nizhny Novgorod) and FC "Zenit" (St. Petersburg). (File)

    1. Music Hall

    The main association of Zenit fans in St. Petersburg and is made up of a core group of 15-200. Grew out of a mishmash of local fan groups to become the biggest in town. Scored a major victory against Dinamo Moscow fans in 2009.

    Currently bitterly divided over the treatment of stadium stewards in St. Petersburg.

    4. Jolly Boys

    Founded in around 2011 when several Bad Company members decided to split and set up their own “firm.”  Jolly Boys hold an annual Fight for Zenit mixed martial arts contest among Zenit fans.

    Other

    According to information coming from within the fan community, the recent brawls in Marseille also involved members of Funny Friends, Lokomotiv Moscow supporters, hooligans from Sturdy Fighters in Vladimir, Russian-speaking fans from Ventspils, Latvia, who traditionally attend all games played by the Russian national squad, several members of Torpedo Moscow and Ural Yekaterinburg “firms” and “soldiers” from Samara.

    Related:

    Head of Russian Football Fans’ Union Shprygin to Be Deported From France
    Total of 12 Russian Football Fans Detained in Lille
    Tags:
    brawls, groups, football fans, violence, list, Yaroslavka, Gladiators Firm 96, Wild Boars, School, Union, Russia
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