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Ararat Football Club (arm. Ֆուտբոլային Ակումբ „Արարատ“ Երևան) is an Armenian football club from Yerevan, founded in 1935. Champion of the USSR in 1973, two-time winner of the USSR Cup, champion of Armenia, five-time winner of the Armenian Cup, winner of the Armenian Super Cup. Quarter-finalist of the European Cup (1975/76).

Full title:  Football club "Ararat" Yerevan
Founded: May 10, 1935 (aged 85)
Stadium: Hrazdan, Yerevan, capacity   54 208


Ararat - Torpedo Moscow - 5: 0 (1967)
Ararat - Torpedo Moscow - 5: 0 (1972)
Ararat - Neftchi Baku - 6:1 (1981)
"Ararat" - "Chernomorets" Odessa - 6: 1 (1982)

The biggest victories in the USSR Championship:

Ararat - Anorthosis Famagusta (Cyprus) - 9:0 (1975/76)

The first and only time a Soviet footballer scored 5 goals in one European Cup match (Eduard Markarov).

Biggest wins in European cups:

Achievements in the USSR Championship:

International achievements:

  • 1/4 European Cup: 1974/75

  • UEFA Cup Round of 16: 1972/73

  • Cup Winners' Cup Round of 16: 1975/76

  • Indian Football Association (IFA Sheild) Cup Winner

In addition, in the USSR national team 3 games in 1966-1968, including one game at the 1966 World Cup (4th place), Eduard Markarov played, who at that time played for the Baku Neftyanik.

Football player of the year in the USSR:

  • Arkady Andriasyan - No. 2 - 1973

  • Eduard Markarov - No. 3 - 1971

Honored Master of Sports of the USSR:

  • Harutyun Kegeyan — 1960

  • Eduard Markarov —1973

Members of Grigory Fedotov's club:

  • Eduard Markarov - No. 13 - 159 goals

  • Khoren Hovhannisyan - No. 38 - 118 goals

  • Eduard Markarov 

Top scorers of the season:

  • 1976 (c) - Arkady Andriasyan (8)

Accumulation of skill (1949-1970)

Foundation and first achievements (1935-1948)

In 1935, the team of the sports society "Spartak" was created in Erivan. The team was headed by Vramshapuh Merangulyan. At first, the team participated in the championships of the republican level. The first trophy that the club won was the Cup of the Armenian SSR in 1940. At this time, the team was already called Dynamo. For the next 4 years, the championship and the USSR Cup were not played due to the Second World War.

In 1944, games for the USSR Cup were resumed, in which the Dynamo team also took part. Dynamo Yerevan rivals were their Tbilisi teammates. However, the match was never played due to the fault of the Yerevan residents. In 1947, the team became the silver medalist of the Second League championship in the Transcaucasian zone. The team was only one point behind ODO from Tbilisi. In that championship, Dynamo, in a home match against the Tbilisi Wings of the Soviets, showed the best result at that time (match score 7:1). In the 1948 season, Dynamo was supposed to start in the First Group (the Major League at that time), but after 30 games, along with 15 other clubs, it was withdrawn. All 16 clubs continued to participate in the lower league. Dynamo, spending another season in the Second Group, fortunately improves its performance and wins first place in the Southern zone. The team won 13 matches out of 18. However, the first place in the zone did not guarantee promotion. According to the regulations of the USSR Championship, the winners of the zones of the second league played among themselves in the final stage. 6 teams participated in this stage. Games between the teams were held in one round. Thus, after 5 games "Dynamo" is located on the 3rd line, which provided the club with a place in the First Group.

In 1949, Dynamo made its first debut in the USSR Premier League. The team performed unsatisfactorily, taking 16th final place. In the first two rounds, the team lost, and in the 3rd round, a victory was recorded in the home match against the VVS team (Moscow). The team was able to beat representatives from the second half of the table, and also two victories were won on the road. 2 devastating defeats were recorded: 0:6 from CDKA, 1:7 from Dinamo Tbilisi. However, despite the poor performance, the club remained in the top list for the following season as the last two clubs, finishing 17th and 18th in the standings, were eliminated. Cup battles ended at the very first stage, against Dynamo from Stalinabad. In the 1950 season, the Dynamo began to act more liberated. The first defeat was recorded only in the 4th round from the Leningrad "Zenith". However, in the end, the team scored only 31 points together with teammates from Kyiv, but Dynamo Yerevan fell into Class B by goal difference. In the USSR Cup, the team started from the 1/128 finals. Having overcome weak opponents, in the 1/16th they stumbled upon rivals in the person of Dynamo Kyiv. In a tense game, which took place in Kyiv, Dynamo Yerevan celebrated a 3:2 victory. In the 1/8 finals they met with Dynamo Moscow and lost with a score of 0:7.

From 1951 to 1959 the team played in class "B". In the first two years, the team performed weakly, and starting from 1953, the results improved - the Yerevan team repeatedly took 2nd place in their “B” class zone. In 1954, the Yerevan team, which managed to change its name to Spartak, reached the final of the USSR Cup, in which about 17,000 teams took part. In the decisive match, Dynamo Kiev, which also played in the final for the first time, became the rivals of Yerevan. The match took place on October 20, 1954 in Moscow at the Dynamo stadium, Yerevan lost with a score of 1:2 (0:1). Zatykyan, Papoyan, Poladyan, Semerdzhyan, Asatryan, E. Vardanyan, Karadzhyan, K. Vardanyan (Durgaryan), Kegeyan, Merkulov, Abrahamyan played for Spartak. The head coach is Hayk Andriasyan. The only goal for the Yerevan team was scored by Merkulov in the 48th minute.

According to the results of the championship in 1956, the team took only 3rd place in the 2nd zone of group "B". Three times becoming the second in its zone, but not getting into the class “B” final, “Spartak” in 1959 still achieves small gold, and with it an increase. In 1960, the team made its first debut in Class "A" of the union championship. The first pancake turned out to be lumpy. Conducting the first match at home, Spartak was beaten by Dynamo Moscow 0:4. In that season, Spartak took the final 9th place. Having played the next three seasons, the team (already renamed Ararat by that time) dropped to class B. Two years later, Yerevan again took first place and returned to class "A". Then the team passed under the jurisdiction of the republican society "Ashkhatank".

Since 1966, Ararat has consistently played in the top division of Soviet football. In the 1966 season, Alyosha Abrahamyan and Alexander Semin made their debut in the team, who became the “best debutants of the season”, the next season Norik Demirchyan received this award. Until 1970, the team was actually being formed. Promising players from different clubs of the Armenian SSR were invited to it. So Levon Ishtoyan and Hovhannes Zanazanyan, who later became the captain of the team, moved from Leninakan's Shirak; from the republican FS - Nazar Petrosyan; there were also cases of the transition of football players of the Baku "Neftchi" of Armenian origin - Arkady Andriasyan and Eduard Markarov.

Armenian football boom (1971-1976)

In 1971, under the leadership of Nikolai Glebov, Ararat won a silver medal in the championship. This was the first significant achievement of the club from the Armenian SSR. Immediately six players of the team were included in the list of 33 best players of the season in the USSR - Ishtoyan, Andriasyan, Markarov, Zanazanyan, Kovalenko and Mesropyan. The next season the team played no less stubbornly, for which they were awarded the team prize "Aggressive Guest", but took 4th place one point behind the podium. On September 13, 1972, Ararat made its debut in European competition. The team played its first match in Larnaca, Cyprus, against EPA, in which Ararat celebrated victory with a minimum score of 1:0. The return game also ended with the score 1:0 in favor of Ararat. The rival at the next stage was the club from Switzerland - Grasshoppers. Having not experienced serious resistance 3:1 away and 4:2 at home, "Ararat" went to the 3rd round, where the German "Kaiserslautern" expected it. Each opponent won home matches 2-0. Extra time did not reveal the winner, and Ararat's rivals turned out to be more successful in the penalty shootout 4:5.

The 1973 season is the peak point in its history for Ararat. The team was led that year by the legendary Nikita Simonyan. It is with this personality that the success of 1973 is connected. The team won the USSR championship and also won the USSR Cup (in a memorable final game against Dynamo Kyiv), thus scoring a golden double. For the shown game, the team was awarded four team prizes - "Aggressive Guest", "The Name of Grigory Fedotov", "Big Score Prize" and For the best goal difference. Eight players were awarded places in the list of 33 best players of the season in the USSR.

By the will of fate, Ararat alternated successful seasons with relatively unsuccessful ones. In the 1974 championship, the team again remained below the line of winners, and in the cup stumbled in the quarterfinals at Shakhtar Donetsk. In autumn Ararat made its debut in the European Champions Cup. The opponents of the first two rounds, Viking and Cork Celtic, did not show serious resistance in the matches against Ararat, 2:6 and 1:7 respectively. In the quarter-finals, the draw brought Ararat to the current, at that time, the owner of the trophy - Bayern Munich. The guest scenario of the game was unsuccessful - a defeat with a score of 0:2. In Yerevan, "Ararat" played reliably in defense, while scoring a ball to a formidable opponent. However, one goal was not enough to continue participating in the main UEFA tournament. The top scorer of the tournament (along with Gerd Muller) was Eduard Markarov.

In 1975, under Viktor Maslov, "Ararat" repeated the achievement of 1973 by half, becoming the owner of the USSR Cup. Losing in the final in the course of the match to Voroshilovgrad Zorya, he won with a score of 2: 1. In the championship, Ararat was 4 points away from the leading trio. That year, the team ignited the star of the Armenian football legend Khoren Hovhannisyan, who was awarded the “best debutant of the season” award. In autumn, the debut in the Cup Winners' Cup took place. Having easily passed the Cypriot "Anorthosis" 10:1, "Ararat" fell in the next round, where the London "West Ham United" won 1:1 and 1:3. This participation in European competitions was the last in the Soviet history of the club.

In 1976, the team was headed by its former player Eduard Markarov. Ararat finished the spring championship of 1976 in second place, having won silver medals. Having lost 1:2 to Dynamo Kyiv in the last match, which was a postponed match of the 9th round, Ararat lost the championship trophy to Dynamo, but only to Moscow. The top scorer with 8 goals (15 games) was Arkady Andriasyan. In the cup, under the leadership of Markarov, Ararat reached the final, simultaneously crushing the resistance of the Moscow Lokomotiv and CSKA, as well as the Dnipropetrovsk Dnipro. In the final, the team was defeated by Dynamo from Tbilisi - 0:3.

Waste of remaining potential (1976-1991)

In total, the team participated in 33 USSR championships (in the class of the strongest teams), played 1026 matches, won 352 of them, tied 280, lost 394, scored 1150 goals, conceded 1306. By 1975, the team participated in three European cups. In the last USSR championship in 1991, the team took 7th place.

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