Kazakhstan media Prosports.kz explained why FC Kairat can win the Premier League title next season.
FC Kairat Almaty, who in the last few years experiencing renaissance, could not make their supporters happy by winning a Premier League title. There are few reasons why. The main one, for sure, is an awful start of the season in the Premier League following the change in managers. Another reason which was against Kairat is their lost points in 4 games against Ordabasy. From 12 available points Kairat could only manage to get 2. Of course there were problems with selection in defence after several vital players got injured as the season went on.
Hence, Kairat could only finish second. But this is history now and Kairat supporters are optimistic about the future now.
Prosports.kz explains why Kairat should win the Premier League title in the 2017 season. There are several reasons for that.
Long period of waiting
The reason is boring. It is now 13th consecutive year for FC Kairat without a Premier League title. We can sing praises to the 2004 winning squad, as there very few players left who are still playing in various teams. Kairat, who faced tough times after winning a Premier League in 2004, with the arrival of the new and ambitious President revived and became one of the best clubs in Kazakhstan, looking to regain the Premier League trophy.
It is time to change the mentality
In three previous seasons Kairat regained the power and was very close to winning the League. But in the most important mooments the goals were ended up being too difficult. Of course, we can not let our heads drop and to avoid being always second and to establish the winning mentality Kairat is in need to finally bring back the Champions title home.
Last season for FC Kairat manager was contradictory. Kakhaber Tskhadadze had to take the charge of the team following poor start of the team in the Premier League following the resign of ex-Kairat manager Alexander Borodyuk. Georgian specialist managed to quickly get the team into shape and began chasing Astana. Unfortunately, Tskhadadze did not manage to win the league in his first year. And Kazakh Cup was out of reach for him. On the cold, snowy day in November Astana beat Kairat at Almaty Central Stadium and made a golden double.
Anatoliy Tymoshchuk won two trophies with FC Kairat
Interesting that with Borodyuk Kairat did not manage to win a single game in the official matches, in adding or extra time. Nevertheless, Russian specialist managed to win Kazakh Supercup.
Taking into account effort put in by Borodyuk, it is fair to say that Tskhadadze, who reincarnated the team, deserves the trophy.
Winning any trophy could have also been very important for Andrey Arshavin. Ex-Russian national player, as well as ex-Zenit, Arsenal and Kuban player joined FC Kairat in March, after the Supercup was won. Not everyone positively reacted to Arshavin's transfer. Jokes, critics and chances to calculate his salary, that what has been following Andrey Arshavin's career in Kazakhstan.
However, Kairat winger shut everyone with his game on the pitch, becoming one of the most vital players for the team and extending his contract for one more year. If at the end of 2017 season Euro-2008 bronze medalist will be left without a club, it will be at least strange.
At the moment Kakhaber Tskhadadze has everything to achieve the goal. The most important of all – time. Georgian specialist will not have to quickly accept an unknown team with negaive results in the Premier League, as it happened in April 2016. Finally Tskhadadze has the opportunity to prepare the team for the season himself and take part in club transfers to increase the squad depth.
Georgy Zhukov - a good addition for FC Kairat
Kairat newcomers Eldos Akhmetov and Georgy Zhukov give supporters hope for the optimistic future. Akhmetov will be there to finally solid the position of a right back, where last season Ermek Kuantayev and Stanislav Lunin did not show much quality. Moreover, both of them managed to get injured, hence Kakhaber Tskhadadze was forced make changes in the defensive line, where he also lost Bruno Soares and Timur Rudoselskiy due to injuries. Sometimes Kairat defensive line reminded wall around the castle with missing sections.
Eldos Akhmetov (in the middle) was one of the first newcomers in FC Kairat
Midfield also needed strengthening. Signing of Georgy Zhukov, who played for FC Ural last season, was just in time. Born in Kazakhstan, has football background in Belgium, where he moved in the early ages with his parents, joined Kairat with the condition to play for Kazakhstan. If he can become a regular starting XI player, everyone will benefit from it. It looks like Zhukov will take the position of a defensive midfielder, but having a great technical ability he can play anywhere in midfield, increase the competition and add variety to the midfield.
Finally Kairat managed to strengthen the goalkeeper position. Stas Pokatilov did not wait for other options and left FC Rostov to join Kairat on loan. The loan of Kazakhstan national goalkeeper to Kairat was in good time. Vladimir Plotnikov was injured and not so confident play of Andrei Sidelnikov allowed Pokatilov to quickly become a first choice goalkeeper, where he proved himself very well.
Kairat agreed with Rostov to buy Pokatilov. Pokatilov signed the contract with Kairat on 3+2 deal.
Stas Pokatilov in action for FC Kairat
After Anatoliy Tymoshchuk left the club, Islambek Kuat will get his chance to prove himself on his position, defensive midfielder, where in partnership with Mikhail Bakaev, who recently received the status of a home-grown player, will stop the attacks from opponents. In previous two seasons Kuat was forced to play out of position, substituting injured players and closing problem positions in the line-up.
Forward line also proved themselves last season. Scored 75 goals in the Premier League, 22 of them scored Gerard Gohou, who again finished as a top goalscorer. But nevertheless, it still needs strenghtening. Second striker would be a usefull addition to the team, who will be playing in several competitions upcoming season.
Gerard Gohou confirmed his quality
UEFA Champions League
Last time Kairat played in the major football tournament was in 2005. But the team got knocked-out in the qualifying stage, having lost to Artmedia from Slovakia, who was at that time managed by Vladimir Weiss. Now, clubs from Kazakhstan regularly take part in more than just first qualifying stage. We can clearly remember Shakhter and Astana. Astana in the 2015/16 season was the first club in Kazakhstan history to play in the Champions League group stage, which had positive effects on attendance and finance, adding more than €15 million to the club – big money for Kazakhstan football.
We can not just forget about the existance of a serious competition from Astana opponents and say that Champions League path is easier than Europa League path. But there is defenetely something to fight for. Why not Kairat make this step in 2017?
Author: Alisher Abdulin