Metal fatigue


Zinetula Bilyaletdinov, multiple champion of the world and Europe in hockey, winner of gold medals of the Olympic Games in Sarajevo, having completed his career in sports, brought up more than one generation of Russian and foreign players. Now the former defender of Dynamo Moscow holds the post of head coach of the Ak Bars club in Kazan and acts as vice president and general manager of the distinguished team.

Childhood and youth

Zinetula Khaidarovich Bilyaletdinov, a Tatar by nationality, was born in Moscow on March 13, 1955 in a family of notorious workers in Soviet industry. Father Haydar was a native of the Nizhny Novgorod region, who in the post-war years moved to the capital and spent most of his life in the team of the Krasny Bogatyr shoe factory. Naymya’s mother worked in logging, and then gave birth to three children and before retiring worked as a cleaner in the shops of the Red October Confectionery.

As a schoolboy, Zinetula was fond of many things: he participated in sports and played wind instruments in the children's ensemble of the pioneer camp. In the summer, the boy was sent to relatives in the village of Pitsu, where the future champion spent a lot of time in the fresh air and improved his health by running around the neighborhood with the neighboring guys.

In Moscow, Zinetula attended a secondary educational institution and in his free time played hockey in an amateur team organized by former footballer Arkady Larionov. Under the supervision of the Dynamo Kyiv midfielder, teenagers independently poured an ice rink and mastered the skiing technique and skills of working with a club and a puck. Mentor helped the guys with advice and tried to provide equipment.

As a result, the yard club won regional hockey competitions and got to the prestigious Golden Puck youth tournament, where the abilities of striker Bilyaletdinov interested the mentors of the Dynamo club Stanislav Petukhov and Alexander Kvasnikov.

Having decided to tackle the fate of a young, promising hockey player, the coaches invited the boy to a sports school, and after a couple of years, a technical striker who skillfully mastered the club and attacking techniques grew up before their eyes.


Bilyaletdinov’s professional biography began in 1971 with his debut at international competitions in Poland. There, the striker was retrained as a defender and showed skill in selecting the puck and containing the opponent’s onslaught.

Having gained a foothold in this position, Zinetula, whom his teammates called Sasha, got into the starting lineup of Dynamo Moscow and, under the supervision of experienced coaches, became one of the key players in Soviet hockey.

For 15 years spent in the capital's club, Bilyaletdinov played 588 matches, scored 63 goals in the USSR championships and won the national cup and repeated silver medalist of the championship of the Soviet Union.

Even in his youth, a pupil of coaches Vitaly Davydov and Arkady Chernyshev was invited to the national team. Having taken a leading place in the defense of the national team, Zinetula participated in the 1978 World Championships and made an invaluable contribution to the victory of Russian hockey over formidable Czechs, who won the tournament’s gold medals for 2 years.

After the competition, in an interview with reporters, the player admitted that this gain cost the team tremendous efforts, and having reached the maximum, the players cried with joy to the sounds of the USSR anthem. This triumph brought Bilyaletdinov the title of Honored Master of Sports. From 1976 to 1988, the hockey player justified him by helping the national team defeat strong rivals in international competitions of the highest rank.

Throughout his playing career, Dynamo participated in 253 matches of the national team, and on the third attempt, won the Canadian Cup together with colleagues in 1981. In addition, the hockey player became the author of 8 goals against opponents at the World Championships and the Olympic Games and 6 times became the gold medalist of the main hockey tournament from 1978 to 1986.

A distinctive feature of Bilyaletdinov-hockey player was an irresistible desire to improve gaming skills. Mastering the theory, he chose the most effective ways to improve the game and recorded them in a diary, which was established with the advent of the professional league. Therefore, after breaking up with the club and the national team, defender at number 14 accumulated a considerable amount of knowledge and practical techniques, which became a good help at the beginning of coaching in 1988.

The first wards of Zinetula Khayyadarovich were the athletes of Dynamo Moscow, where the novice mentor became the right hand of head coach Yuri Moiseev. By that time, the photo of the defender of the capital's team had already taken its place in the club museum, and hockey players were incredibly happy to work with a great player who was awarded this honor.

Zinetula Bilyaletdinov and Vladimir Putin / Kremlin

However, the “second roles” at home did not suit the former defender, and in 1993, under a successful combination of circumstances, went overseas and became an assistant to the head coach of the Canadian Winnipeg Jets club, having the opportunity to get acquainted with the western hockey training program.

Soon, the team from the main city of the province of Manitoba moved to America, and Bilyaletdinov was fortunate enough to expand his theoretical and practical knowledge in the process of communicating with the leading experts of foreign clubs gathered in the NHL championship.

Later, the mentor used the acquired experience in the Dynamo Moscow, which he headed in 1997. The new methodology, which included rigorous discipline and intense physical training, was successful. The capital's club became the leader of the Russian championship and in 1999 declared the winner of the Euroleague tournament, and in 2000 earned gold medals of the national championship.

Zinetula Khaydyarovich’s childhood

Bilyaletdinov was born on March 13, 1955 in Moscow. His father, Khaydar, was not a native Muscovite. He was born in the Nizhny Novgorod region, in the Tatar village of Pitsa, where after school and army he worked on a collective farm. At 24, he moved to the capital and got a job as a worker at the Krasny Bogatyr shoe factory - he worked there until his retirement. The mother of the future outstanding hockey player, Nyaymya, was also a simple worker - a technician at the Krasny Oktyabr confectionery.

Hockey player Zinetula Bilyaletdinov in his youth

Parents met and got married in the capital. Their family had three children. Zinetula often spent the summer months in his father’s homeland, in the village. Later I remembered that golden time - bathing, bonfires, strawberries, huts, climbing trees. A schoolboy went to the pioneer camp, where it was also fun. He participated in all sports events and even played the trumpet ensemble.

The beginning of the career of a hockey player Bilyaletdinov

He started playing hockey in the yard team under the supervision of ex-football player Dynamo (Kiev) Arkady Larionov. He knew how to captivate the boys - together they built a hockey field, poured ice, Larionov got them equipment, uniforms, trained and gave each of the guys a chance to grow up to the Olympic champion.

As part of this team, Zinetula, or Alexander, as he was called because of the difficulty of pronouncing his real name, became the winner in the regional competitions and the medalist of the annual Golden Puck children's hockey tournament. The excellent playing qualities of Sasha were noticed by the mentors of Dynamo Petukhov and Kvasnikov. They took a promising young man to the club in 1969. In just two years, thanks to his determination and hard work, he was able to reach the level of masters.

At first he played as a striker, and at the end of 1971, after a tournament in Poland, the coaches transferred the young hockey player to the position of defender. With great zeal, the athlete now mastered new tasks for him - to protect the goal from attacks, tightly patronize enemy players, impede their movement to the goal, interfere with shots, skillfully select the puck and help the forwards with gears.

Zinetula Bilyaletdinov by Tatar nationality

In 1972 he was transferred to the main team. With trainers, Bilyaletdinov, he said, was lucky. The famous master of power struggle Vitaly Davydov taught him the intricacies of choosing a position, the interaction between players and all the other necessary defense techniques. Another mentor, Arkady Chernyshev, was an excellent psychologist and coordinator of the game, who knew the strengths and weaknesses of each player and skillfully used them to achieve the main goal - victory. Bilyaletdinov's debut game for Dynamo was a match with SKA in 1973, held in Leningrad. The hockey player later recalled that he was terribly worried and, in the end, did not even remember any details of the match.

He received his first higher education in 1979, having graduated from the SCOLIFK.

As part of the club from 1973 to 1988, he spent a total of 588 games, scoring 63 goals.

Speeches Bilyaletdinov for the USSR national hockey team

At 21, Zinetulu was taken to the national team of the Soviet Union. The first competition in which he was fortunate enough to defend the honor of the country was the 45th 1978 World Championship, held in Czechoslovakia. Then our team won gold, having displaced from the podium Czechs, who had previously been world champions for two years.

Bilyaletdinov forever remembered how difficult it was for them to win the victory, and the sense of pride that gripped all our hockey players during the flag-raising and the sounding of the USSR anthem, when even our experienced players had tears in their eyes.

Zinetula Bilyaletdinov is now engaged in coaching

In the same year, in addition to the champion title, Zinetula also received the title of Honored Master of Sports of the country.

In total, Bilyaletdinov in the national team at the world championships since 1976 spent 253 matches and scored 21 goals.

A special place in the sports career of Bilyaletdinov is his participation in the Canada Cup. He fought three times for this trophy - in 1976, 1981 and 1984. 1981 was a victory for our players, when they beat powerful Canadian professionals.

For many years, Bilyaletdinov was one of the leaders of the Dynamo team and the USSR team. His skill delighted hockey fans and experts. Zinetula teammates were no less famous players - Vladimir Lutchenko, Vyacheslav Fetisov, Vasily Pervukhin. They were united by friendship and high technicality, tactical flexibility, powerful accurate shots, amazing mutual understanding and coordination of actions on the field.

Bilyaletdinov constantly honed his professionalism, studied the game of other outstanding defenders, sought to fulfill power tricks at the level of automatism, enriched his arsenal with new exercises, analyzed errors, looked for ways to increase the reliability of taking the puck, not only during practical training, but also on the basis of acquiring new ones theoretical knowledge. He continued to study, and in 1982 received a second higher education, graduating from the Faculty of Physical Education of the Moscow Regional Pedagogical Institute.

Coaching by Bilyaletdinov

Having completed the player’s career in 1988, Zinetula began coaching. As a preparation for this stage of his activity, starting at the age of 28, he kept a diary where he wrote down the most interesting and effective exercises from his own practice.

Initially, Bilyaletdinov worked as an assistant to Yuri Moiseyev in his club, and in 1993 he was invited to the Canadian professional hockey club Winnipeg Jets. He became the first Russian coach to receive a similar offer from the NHL, as a recognition of his highest skill and professionalism. Foreign experts noted that Bilyaletdinov is "the only Russian player playing Canadian hockey."

During the five years of work in the NHL, Bilyaletdinov gained a lot of useful experience, which he then successfully used to develop national hockey. He fully mastered the method of analysis of every hockey player used overseas, which ultimately leads to an understanding of the player’s only possible next step and makes it possible to react to it with lightning speed. Zinetula also shared his personal knowledge and enriched the training process in the NHL with the techniques characteristic of Russian hockey. The players thanked him, calling them great Bill.

Having returned to Moscow in the summer of 1997, Zinetula again began to work as a coach for his native Dynamo. He was known as an intellectual, as he never lost his temper, behaved correctly, showing composure even in moments of acute gaming situations. He was an adherent of strict discipline and maximum physical exertion. Such working principles yielded good results - the Dynamo team became the leader in the Russian championship, and the Zinetuly wards, who later left for the NHL, became one of the best hockey players in the world.

Zinetula Bilyaletdinov is currently

In 2001, Bilyaletdinov worked for some time as the Chicago Black Hawks (NHL) coach, then as the head coach of the Swiss club Lugano, in 2002-2004 he again headed Dynamo.

Since 2004, Zinetula took up the duties of Ak Bars head coach. Under his leadership, the Kazan team won the “gold” of the national championship, the European Cup and became the first ever holder of the Gagarin Cup.

In May 20012, the Russian national team, led by Bilyaletdinov, became the world champion, winning the Slovaks 6-2 in the final.

At the 2013 World Cup, our hockey players were unable to reach the semifinals, losing to the US team. At the Sochi Olympics, the Russian team also did not perform in the best way, losing to the Finns in the quarterfinals. On March 5, 2014, after the contract expired, Bilyaletdinov resigned as chief coach of the Russian national team and returned to Ak Bars as club vice president.

Personal life of Zinetula Khaydyarovich

Zinetula is married, has a daughter Natalia (born 1978) and two grandchildren. She works as a lawyer, and her husband, Stanislav Romanov, is also a former hockey player.

Bilyaletdinov - Honored Master of Sports of the USSR, Honored Coach of the RSFSR and the Russian Federation, reserve colonel. He was awarded the orders “Badge of Honor”, ​​“Friendship of Peoples”, as well as “For Services to the Republic of Tatarstan”.

Zinetula Bilyaletdinov: “I am not ready to work not at full strength”

Resignation statement Zinetula Bilyaletdinov wrote almost immediately after the end of the season, back in mid-March. However, the club did not immediately accept the coach’s desire. And the president of RT Rustam Minnikhanovand club president Nail Maganov asked him to take a break and once again think carefully about the decision. The head of the republic even quite emotionally stood up for Ak Bars and his head coach at his press conference on March 7, making it clear that there would be no hasty decisions.

I must say that in the club itself, it seems, everyone lived to the last with the feeling that Bill still remains. His assistants went to watch the newcomers, the coach discussed the composition for the next year, some domestic issues ... But it was impossible to continue further - on April 30, the coach expires a two-year contract.

And on the eve of the evening in the Kazan Kremlin, a meeting took place, which can already be called historical. Bilyaletdinov remained unconvinced and asked him to let go.

As soon as the information leaked to the press, the club almost instantly reacted. Zinetula Khaidyarovich himself was the first to address the public. It seems that for the first time in his life, he wrote an open letter to fans.

“I’ve been in a hockey locker room since I was 18, and for the last 22 years I have been on the coaching bench. After consulting with my family, people who are important in my life and the club, I decided to complete the work as the head coach of Ak Bars, ”the statement says.

Having a good rest, the coach intends to devote time to the development of his grandson - defender of the Moscow CSKA Alexander Romanov. Photo: fhr.ru

Any speculation on whether he decided to leave himself, the trainer dispelled with numerous comments in the media. He repeated the same thought to everyone.“Throughout my career I have accumulated fatigue, primarily emotional,” Bilyaletdinov told the R-Sport portal. “I feel that now I can’t give myself to the training process 100 percent, and I’m not ready to work at full strength.”

At the same time, Zinetula Khaidyarovich emphasized that his decision was not connected with the result of the current playoffs, that is, he would have left Ak Bars anyway.

Bill has no plans for further employment - no one has lured him anywhere, even if there have been attempts. According to "BUSINESS Online", having a good rest, the coach intends to devote time to the development of his grandson - the defender of Moscow CSKA Alexandra Romanova. The 18-year-old hockey player has high expectations and is already playing in the main team. Moreover, this season he can do what his grandfather did not succeed in - to become the country's champion as a player. CSKA will play in the final of the Gagarin Cup.

Romanov admitted that his grandfather calls him after each match and analyzes his game. The hockey player has another year of contract with CSKA, after his completion he will be able to leave for the NHL, where he has already been drafted by Montreal. Perhaps Bill will travel to North America to see where hockey is going and get new ideas. Especially in the 90s, he already worked in NHL clubs and knows English very well.

Nail Maganov: “Bilyaletdinov remains in the club system as Honorary President of the Ak Bars Academy of Hockey named after Moiseyev Photo:“ BUSINESS Online ”


Bilyaletdinov headed Ak Bars from 2004 (with a break for work in the Russian national team from 2011 to 2014), under his leadership the club won the Gagarin Cup three times, four times became the champion of Russia, the owner of the European Cup, Continent Cup.

Given all of Bill’s many achievements, the legendary coach couldn’t leave Ak Bars in any other way. The last word was only his. “We regretted the decision of Zinetula Khaidyarovich with great regret,” said the president of “leopards” Nail Maganov. “Bilyaletdinov remains in the club’s system as Honorary President of the Moiseev Ak Bars Academy of Hockey.”

With great reverence, the most star player of the team responded to the departure of Bill Danis Zaripov: “I myself saw the news recently, I was surprised, everything was unexpected. Nothing foreshadowed. As for whether his departure can affect my fate in the club, then everything can be. Maybe I, with his departure, will have to finish. I’m not shy to say that Bilyaletdinov is the best coach at the moment, with a competent approach to everything. Such specialists are necessary for our league and teams. I would like him to continue his work in a club, teach our youth, share his experience with novice coaches, ”TASS quoted Zaripova as saying.

Ak Bars and the coach part with friends, which in itself is a rare case in the current realities of Russian sports Photo: BUSINESS Online

It is unlikely that anyone specifically guessed, but symbolically, that the point was set on the eve of the 10th anniversary of the first victory in the Gagarin Cup. It seems that in general in modern Russian sports, not a single club disagreed with the coach like that. Yes, unfortunately, the breakup is taking place against the backdrop of a big setback in the playoffs, but everything looks so natural, peaceful and logical that one does not even believe that this happens. No scandals, omissions and intrigues. Maybe the sport as a whole has become much more professional?

The club plans to hold a ceremony honoring the coach, most likely, at the first games of the new season.


Bilyaletdinov’s departure is the exact opposite of scandalous dismissal Kurban Berdyev from Rubin in 2013. Nevertheless, doubts creep in: will Ak Bars repeat the unenviable fate of a football club?

Fortunately, there is nothing to fear.

“Ak Bars” consolidated its status as a top club long before Bilyaletdinov joined the team. The first championship team, assembled from their pupils, got in the XX century - in 1998. Photo: Shamil Abdyushev

First of all, Ak Bars consolidated its status as a top club long before Bilyaletdinov arrived there. The first championship team, assembled from their pupils, got in the XX century - in 1998, 6 years before the appointment of Bill. In addition, there were two more “silver” and “bronze”. Eminent specialists worked with the club. The same Yuri Moiseev Bill began his career as an assistant, and in 2004 Zinetula Khaidyarovich replaced the two-time champion of Russia Vladimir Vuytek.

Secondly, the coach at Ak Bars has always been integrated into a large management structure, especially when Tatneft took up the team with its own principles of work. The system clearly limited the responsibilities of each manager. No one has absolute power, not even the club president. The coach worked with the main team, and no one could tell him when choosing the composition for the match. But the cleaners were hired by the supply manager at the base, the supply manager bought the meat in the dining room, but the general manager or the club director was looking for the players.

Thirdly, Ak Bars already passed the exam when Bilyaletdinov left for the Russian team in 2011-2014. At Vladimir Krikunov the club reached the second round of the playoffs, and when Valeria Belove I almost reached the final of the Gagarin Cup. And these are not the most famous trainers.

Nobody knew about Rubin before Berdyev’s arrival, the team was hanging out in the first division and didn’t even dream of big victories. It is logical that the name of the coach and the club soon grew together, especially after victories in the national championship. In the hands of the coach was absolute power. All any significant decisions were made by him personally. Naturally, when such a backbone figure was removed, everything fell apart. Now Berdyev himself realized that this manner of management is dead end, and concentrated only on football. A one-year pause in his career Kurban Bekievich helped reborn. He moved from the category of good coaches to the status of extra-class mentors.

A family

The ancestral roots of Zinetula Bilyaletdinov come from the Nizhny Novgorod land, from the village of Pitsa, Sergach district.

Father - Khaidar Bilyaletdinov (1928-1999). Before serving in the army, he worked on a collective farm, in 1952 he moved to Moscow, where for many years, until his retirement, he worked at the Krasny Bogatyr factory

Mother - Nyaymya Bilyaletdinova (1926-2000). I met my future husband in Moscow. She worked at a knitting factory, then a janitor, during the war years she worked at logging. After the war, she worked as a cleaner at the Krasny Oktyabr confectionery factory for more than 20 years.

Wife - Nadezhda Viktorovna Bilyaletdinova, process engineer.

Daughter - Natalya Romanova (Bilyaletdinova) (b. 1978), lawyer. Married to Stanislav Romanov, also a former hockey player. Raises a son and daughter.

Gaming career

Bilyaletdinov started playing hockey back at school in the yard team, organized by former Dynamo football player Arkady Larionov.

A pupil of the Moscow Dynamo (since 1969), where he was brought by coaches Alexander Kvasnikov and Stanislav Petukhov. Dynamo player (Moscow, 1973-1988).

Stanislav Petukhov subsequently noted:

Bilyaletdinov compares favorably with his peers in good skating, sports anger, intransigence in the fight.

As part of Dynamo, he played 588 matches in the USSR championships and scored 63 goals.

As part of the USSR team (1976-1988) he played 253 matches, scored 21 goals. In tournaments of the World Championships and the Winter Olympic Games, he played 77 matches, scored 8 goals. He played 18 matches in the Canadian Cup tournaments.

Coaching career

He began his coaching career in 1988, becoming one of the assistants to Yuri Moiseyev in the capital's Dynamo. In 1988-1992 - coach of Dynamo (Moscow).

Zinetula Bilyaletdinov became the first Russian coach invited to work in the NHL, where in 1993-1997 he worked as an assistant coach at the Winnipeg Jets club (in 1996 the team moved to the USA and became known as the Phoenix Coyotes), while studying Canadian and American training experience.

In 1997-2000 - the head coach of Dynamo (Moscow). Under his leadership, the team became the country's champion, silver medalist of the Russian championship and twice - silver medalist of the Euroleague.

In 2001-2002, he was the head coach of Lugano (Switzerland).

In 2002-2004 - again the head coach of Dynamo. Dismissed after an unsuccessful 2003/04 season (defeat in the first round of the playoffs from Vanguard).

From May 2004 to March 2005 he was the head coach of the Russian team (he led the 2004 World Cup, where the Russians lost in the quarter finals of the US team).

From September 30, 2004 to June 2011, he was the head coach of the Ak Bars club. Under his leadership, the team won the “gold” of the Russian Championship, the European Champions Cup and became the first ever holder of the Gagarin Cup of the Continental Hockey League, and then - two-time winner of the tournament. This title was fourth for Bilyaletdinov in the championships of Russia (once with Moscow Dynamo and three times with Ak Bars), as a result he became the sole champion in this indicator among coaches in Russia.

June 27, 2011 Bilyaletdinov again became the head coach of the Russian team. The contract was calculated until 2014, until the end of the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi.

After that, Bilyaletdinov stated:

I'm breaking up, - quotes the words of Bilyaletdinov tatar-inform.ru. - On the one hand - increase, and on the other - I lose a lot. For me, Tatarstan, Kazan, my team have become a family, home, family. I was the soul here, even Moscow was less of an interest to me. I need to overcome myself in order to leave Ak Bars, which has already become a real brand. The question of my appointment was decided at the level of Prime Minister Vladimir Putin and Tatarstan President Rustam Minnikhanov, and this situation could not be denied.

On May 20, 2012, the Russian team led by Bilyaletdinov became the world champion, winning all 10 games of the tournament. At the 2013 World Cup, for the first time in 6 years, Russians failed to reach the semifinals, defeatingly defeating the US team in the quarter finals (3: 8).

At the Sochi Olympics, the Russian team under the leadership of Bilyaletdinov showed an expressionless game and flew out at the quarterfinal stage, losing to the Finns with a score of 1: 3. March 5, 2014 Bilyaletdinov resigned as head coach of the Russian national hockey team. The day after the resignation, Bilyaletdinov returned to Ak Bars as vice president and general manager.

July 13, 2014 Bilyaletdinov again became the head coach of the Ak Bars club. Under his leadership, Ak Bars reached the Gagarin Cup finals again, losing in the SKA finals. On April 22, 2018, Ak Bars won the Gagarin Cup for the third time, defeating CSKA in the final series. Thus, Ak Bars became one of the sole leaders of the KHL, having three Gagarin Cups in its assets. However, a year later Bilyaletdinov resigned after an early departure from the next KHL draw.


CommandTournament SeasonRegular Season / Group StagePlayoffs
ANDINHE / WBNSoftware / softwarePABOUTResultINPResult
Dynamo MoscowRSL 1997-98 4630-6-10665th place--No playoffs
RSL 1998/99 4226-11-5633rd place1152nd place
RSL 1999/00 38260426841st place1341st place
RSL 2000/01 ???????fired---
Lugano (Switzerland)ShNL 2001/02???????fired---
Dynamo MoscowRSL 2001/02 ???????7th place03Eliminated in the quarter finals
RSL 2002/03 5122311114847th place23Eliminated in the quarter finals
RSL 2003/04 60282121171016th place03Eliminated in the quarter finals
Russian teamKM 2004 32000142nd place01Eliminated in the quarter finals
AK BarsRSL 2004/05 492835112964th place13Eliminated in the quarter finals
RSL 2005/06 51255948982nd place1211st place
RSL 2006/07 543537181191st place1152nd place
RSL 2007/08 57285-519997th place73Eliminated in 1/2 finals
KHL 2008/09 56364-6101222nd place148Gagarin Cup won
KHL 2009/10 56258-518963rd in the East157Gagarin Cup won
KHL 2010/11 54295-8121052nd in the East54Eliminated in the quarter finals
Russian teamWorld Cup 2012 770-00211st place30Won the World Cup
Russian teamWorld Cup 2013 750-02152nd place01Eliminated in the quarter finals
Russian teamOI 2014 421-1092nd place01Eliminated in the quarter finals
AK BarsKHL 2014/15 60346-6141201st in the East1372nd place
KHL 2015/16 60256-920965th in the East34Eliminated in the 1/8 finals
KHL 2016/17 60299-4181093rd in the East87Eliminated in 1/2 finals
KHL 2017/18 56302-6181001st in the East163Gagarin Cup won
KHL 2018/19 62344-618825th in the East163Eliminated in the 1/8 finals

As a player

  • Silver medalist (7): 1977, 1978, 1979, 1980, 1985, 1986, 1987
  • Bronze medalist (6): 1974, 1976, 1981, 1982, 1983, 1988

  • Owner: 1976
  • Finalist (3): 1974, 1979, 1988

As part of the USSR team:

  • Champion: 1984 (Sarajevo)
  • Silver medalist: 1980 (Lake Placid)

  • Champion (6): 1978, 1979, 1981, 1982, 1983, 1986
  • Silver medalist: 1987
  • Bronze medalist: 1985

  • Champion (8): 1978, 1979, 1981, 1982, 1983, 1985, 1986, 1987

  • Owner: 1979

  • Owner: 1981


In any case, it will be difficult for the new Ak Bars coach, especially at the initial stage of work, Kazan does not like to wait for victories, everyone wants a result here and now. And constant comparisons with Bill also cannot be avoided. Who will lead the “leopards” to the battle for the fourth Gagarin Cup?

According to our publication, the main candidate for the post of head coach of the team is Dmitry Kvartalnov. The last two seasons he worked at Lokomotiv, before that he headed Sibir, Severstal and CSKA.

The main candidate for the post of head coach of the team - Dmitry Kvartalnov Photo: “BUSINESS Online”

If Ak Bars stops on Kvartalnov’s candidacy, then his coaching staff will have to enter Ari Moisanen. Recall, the Finnish goalkeeper coach left Kazan last year. Prior to that, he worked in Kazan for five years, educated Emil Garipov and brought him to the top level. In addition to his direct duties, Moisanen did a lot of tactical work at the headquarters of Bilyaletdinov, talked with the players and helped them improve their game. A Finnish specialist recently returned to the KHL by signing a contract with Jokerit. Kazan is already negotiating with him. According to our data, the Finn has offers from five KHL clubs.

Apparently, another key figure in the headquarters of Kvartalnov Ilnur Gizatullin. The pupil of the club became the champion of Russia in 1998, played on the team at the same time as Dmitry Vyacheslavovich, with whom he has long-standing friendly relations and a single view of hockey. The 50-year-old specialist has been working at Almetyevsk Oilman for the past two years. In the first season, the team under his leadership reached the semi-finals of the Petrov Cup, in the second - it became the second in the regular season, but stumbled in the quarter-finals, losing in the seventh match of “Saryarka”.

According to our publication, Gizatullin could be considered a candidate for the post of head coach of the team, but only in the case of a successful performance of Neftyanik this season. However, a misfire came out, and it is obvious that in such a situation no one would have understood such a replacement. At the same time, it is possible that the Kazan pupil can lead the team in a few years, gaining experience so far as one of the Ak Bars coaches.

Ak Bars will not renew contracts with Rafael Batyrshin, Andrei Markov will leave the team Photo: BUSINESS Online


Kvartalnov is a demanding specialist who interacts well with young people, but he has problems with star players and foreigners, although while working at CSKA with an obstinate Alexander Radulov the coach quickly found a common language, which few succeeded.

Obviously, with the advent of a new head coach at Ak Bars, one should expect serious cleansing in the roster. It was already outlined - 17 players on the team end their contracts with the club at the end of April, but now more players may suffer who couldn’t manage to fit into the Kvartalnov’s concept.

So, first of all, age-related players will leave the team. According to our data, Ak Bars will not renew contracts with Rafael Batyrshinwill leave the team Andrey Markov, which may be in the Moscow Dynamo. Will definitely not be in the captain's club Alexandra Svitova and Fedor Malykhin, the latter may end up in Salavat Yulaev. Will leave the team and Alexey Potapov, which was considered exclusively a player of the Bill system.

Obviously there will be a decision on Andrei Popov. His contract does not end, last summer the agreement was extended with him for two years with a salary of 55 million rubles a year. But the slow 30-year-old striker is unlikely to fit into the Kvartalnov system, the coach will better give the chance to local and hungry youth victories.

Will not be in the team captain Alexander Svitov. Losses can also be considered that Vladimir Tkachev and Jiri Sekach intend to try their hand at the NHL Photo: “BUSINESS Online”

Definitely not in the team for next season Alexandra Sharychenkova - the third goalkeeper of Ak Bars. Loss can also be considered that Vladimir Tkachev, Jiri Sekach and Anton Lander intend to try their hand at the NHL. Although negotiations are ongoing with Lander, the club is not satisfied with the financial requests of the Swede. He wants a salary of more than 100 million rubles a year, in Kazan they are ready to give only 60 million, and then this amount is added taking into account the many bonuses for personal and team achievements.

Of the potential reputable newcomers can be called striker "Salavat Yulaev" Anton Burdasov. Also, according to our data, two Canadians from Barys should come to replace Lander and Sekach - Matthew Frettin and Patrice Cormier. Both were leaders of the then Astana team last season and played in the same three, they must quickly play with Justin Azevedo.

The ability and desire to work with youth is the main difference between Kvartalnov and Bilyaletdinov. Last season, Lokomotiv Dmitry Vyacheslavovich broke the KHL record, becoming the youngest team in the league (the average age of the players was 24 years).

Next comes the candidacy of Anvar Gatiyatulin, who headed Tractor last season and sensationally reached the finals of the Eastern Conference with him. Photo: “BUSINESS Online”

At the same time, Kvadrat (the so-called coach in the hockey environment) is not the only candidate for the post of head coach of Ak Bars. Following is the candidacy Anvara Gatiyatulinawho worked last season at the coaching staff Ilya Vorobyov in SKA and the Russian team. Gatiyatulin had previously headed the Tractor and sensationally reached the finals of the Eastern Conference, where he lost to Ak Bars, the future trophy holder. They are showing interest in Anvar Rafailovich in Chelyabinsk, but the negotiations are complicated by the fact that he still has a valid contract with SKA and the Russian national team.

The surname and former coach of the Russian team is called Vyacheslav Bykovbut he has already stated that he had no contacts with Ak Bars. In Kazan, they are ready to invite only Bykov without his faithful and constant assistant Igor Zakharkin.

Foreign experts in the club are not yet considered. In any case, they promise to make a decision on a new coach in the very near future.

Athlete's childhood

Bilyaletdinov Zinetula was born on March 13, 1955 in Moscow. His family lived modestly at that time. His father, Khaydar, was born in the Nizhny Novgorod region. There he graduated from high school and got a job on a collective farm. At the age of 24, he decided to move to the capital. Upon arrival, Haidar began working at the Krasniy Bogatyr shoe factory. In this place he worked most of his life. After the retirement age, he went on a well-deserved rest. Zinetuly’s mom - Nyaymya, worked as a technician at the Krasny Oktyabr confectionery. Parents of the legendary Soviet hockey player met and got married in Moscow. Zinetula as a child went to a pioneer camp, participated in various events. In the summer he was sent to his father’s homeland. Zinetula always remembered that time with warmth. After all, in the village, he and his friends bathed in a river, climbed trees and ate berries.

The beginning of the sports path

Zinetula Bilyaletdinov began his career in the yard team. The first club of the legendary Soviet defender was called Dynamo. It was opened by former Soviet footballer Arkady Larionov. The guys themselves built an ice rink, and after all they poured ice together. Arkady Larionov was kind to children. The coach gave them uniforms and taught hockey skills. It is unlikely that Larionov assumed that he was engaged in the future defender of the USSR national team. Bilyaletdinov at that time was called Alexander, since his real name was difficult to pronounce. In the Dynamo yard team, Bilyaletdinov Zinetula improved his hockey skills. Many talented guys gathered there, who later replenished clubs in the USSR. The Dynamo team won regional competitions, and then became the winner of the popular Golden Puck tournament. The talented player Bilyaletdinov made a great contribution to the success of his first team. His game at the Golden Puck tournament was highly appreciated by the mentors of the Dynamo Moscow hockey club Petukhov and Kvasnikov. In 1969, they took Zinetula to their team. After a couple of years, the young athlete corresponded to the level of a hockey master.

Professional performances

Zinetula Khaidarovich Bilyaletdinov first played as a striker. Only at the tournament in Poland, which took place in 1971, he was put in defense. Zinetula had to learn a new position for herself. The young defender successfully coped with the selection of the puck, deterring a specific striker, blocking shots and assists with passes. That is why Bilyaletdinov was left to play in this position. The talented defender managed to finally gain a foothold in the main team in 1972. He spoke with great gratitude about the coaches Vitaly Davydov and Arkady Chernyshev. Davydov taught him the right way to choose a position on the field and carry out selection. This coach was able to improve the game of defenders.

Mentor Arkady Chernyshev more acted as a psychologist and tactician. He set up players for heavy games. Zinetula Bilyaletdinov spent his first match for the main Dynamo team in 1973 against the SKA team. Later, the legendary Soviet defender admitted that he could barely cope with the excitement. In the Moscow hockey club "Dynamo" Bilyaletdinov spent 15 years. During this time, he played 588 games and hit the opponent’s goal 63 times. This defender was highly respected by the fans of the team. Zinetula forever went down in the history of Dynamo Moscow club.

Team appearances

In hockey Zinetula Bilyaletdinov achieved great success in his youth. At the age of 21, he made his debut in the USSR team, where at that time a large number of legendary players played. Despite such a young age, he managed to gain a foothold in the team. His first international tournament was the World Cup, which took place in 1978 in Czechoslovakia. Of course, everyone considered the hosts to be the favorites, since before that they had confidently won two past world championships. But our team showed a quality game and interrupted the winning streak of the hosts. After the legendary defender recalled how hard they managed to win this victory. On the sound of the anthem of the USSR, even experienced athletes shed tears. Immediately after a difficult victory, the young Zinetula Bilyaletdinov was awarded the title of Honored Master of Sports.

Bilyaletdinov took part in 253 matches for the national team of his country. In them he managed to score 21 goals. Zinetula Bilyaletdinov’s goals for the national team have repeatedly helped our team win prestigious tournaments. This defender made a great contribution to the victory of our team in the Canada Cup. Canadians are very responsible for participating in this tournament. As a rule, the Canadian national team does not leave any chances for rivals on it. Bilyaletdinov, together with the USSR team, tried three times to win this tournament. But the match that took place in 1981 was victorious for them.

It was a slap in the face of Canadian hockey. Our team has once again proved that against Canadian professionals you can play hockey on an equal footing, even surpassing them in some aspects. Zinetula Bilyaletdinov occupied an important place in the national team. The teammates admired his skill, hard work and discipline. Even as the leader of the national team, this legendary defender did not stop improving his game. Zinetula spent a lot of time studying new theoretical knowledge.

The beginning of a coaching career

Even in his youth, Zinetula Bilyaletdinov decided that after completing his career he would become a coach. His many years of experience playing at the highest hockey level undoubtedly helps him in his new position. Zinetula Bilyaletdinov from 28 years old recorded all the most effective exercises in a diary. The legendary defender officially ended his professional career in 1988. By that time, his diary had turned into a whole hockey encyclopedia. Zinetula Bilyaletdinov began his coaching career at Dynamo, his native Moscow. In this team, the defender is considered a living legend. Fans were glad that he stayed in hockey. Photos of Zinetula Bilyaletdinov in youth will forever remain in the museum of Moscow Dynamo. The ex-defender of the Moscow club began as assistant coach with the famous Yuri Moiseev.

Departure overseas

Zinetula Khaidarovich Bilyaletdinov was useful in the Moscow Dynamo. But over time, he became cramped as an assistant coach. In 1993, he was invited to work at the Winnipeg Jets club from the NHL. Bilyaletdinov became the first Russian coach to be offered a job in the most prestigious league in the world. This meant that Canadian specialists highly appreciate the professionalism of the coach from Russia. In the Canadian club Zinetula Khaidarovich spent five years. During this time, he gained invaluable experience, which he then brought with him to Russia. The Winnipeg Jets club respected this Russian specialist. Fans and players called him the great Bill.

Return to Russia

Bilyaletdinov came to Russia from the NHL in 1997. He returned from the strongest league in the world with an already formed coach, almost immediately headed his native Moscow Dynamo. Photo Zinetuly Bilyaletdinov did not come down from sports magazines. Fans were very happy about the return of their legend. During the game, Zinetula Khaidarovich behaves intelligently. He does not lose his temper even in the most stressful situations. After the arrival of the new coach, a strict discipline appeared in the Moscow club. Hockey players noted that physical activity has increased significantly. He took this style of training players from the NHL. The Moscow hockey team led by Zinetula Bilyaletdinov quickly became one of the leaders of the Russian championship. Some young and talented players from that team left to play overseas. Dynamo club fans noted that that team was one of the strongest in a long time.

Continuation of the coaching career

In 2001, Zinetula Khaidarovich again left to work in the most powerful league in the world. This time he became the Chicago Blackhawks coach. But after a short period of time he moved to the Swiss championship, where he worked at the Dynamo club. In 2002, this coach returned to Dynamo Moscow. In 2004, Bilyaletdinov moved to Kazan. It was at Ak Bars that he spent most of his coaching career. Zinetula Khaidarovich managed to assemble the strongest team. The first three, which included Morozov, Zaripov and Zinoviev, inspired fear in the rivals of the Kazan club. Under the guidance of the famous trainer, Ak Bars has repeatedly won the national championship, Gagarin Cup and European Champions Cup. The Kazan team was the first to win the Gagarin Cup. “Ak Bars” during Bilyaletdinov’s work regularly takes the top line in the standings. Currently, this specialist continues to work in the Kazan team.

Coaching with the national team

Zinetula Bilyaletdinov’s statistics of victories for the position of coach is outstanding, therefore, after lengthy negotiations, he headed the Russian national hockey team. In 2004, our team showed a phenomenal result. Throughout the entire World Hockey Championship, the team did not lose a single match and won gold medals. At the championship in 2013, the national team unexpectedly for many lost the US team in the semifinals. In 2014, Sochi hosted the long-awaited Olympics for all Russians. Everyone was expecting gold medals from the country's hockey team, but our team in the quarterfinal lost to the Finland team.

As a trainer

  • Champion (5): 2000 (with Dynamo (Moscow)), 2006, 2009, 2010, 2018 (all with Ak Bars).
  • Silver medalist: 1999 (with Dynamo (Moscow)), 2007, 2015 (with Ak Bars).

  • Winner (3): 2009, 2010, 2018 (all with Ak Bars).
  • Finalist: 2015 (with Ak Bars).

  • Silver medalist (2): 1998, 1999 (with Dynamo (Moscow)).

  • Owner: 2007 (with Ak Bars).

  • Owner: 2008 (with Ak Bars).

  • Champion: 2012 (with the Russian team).


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