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By ESPN Staff

Lokomotiv Moscow - Squad Profiles

Sergei Ovchinnikov (goalkeeper)
Born: 10.11.70
Nationality: Russian

Ovchinnikov

Returned to first club Lokomotiv in January 2002 to replace the Verona-bound Ruslan Nigamatullin. Known as 'The Boss' in Russia, the chunky keeper had spent the previous five years in Portuguese football with Benfica, Alverca and FC Porto.

Controversially not included in his country's World Cup 2002 squad, he is a fine stopper whose agility is a strong point.


Group A: Barcelona | Bayer Leverkusen | Inter Milan | Newcastle
Group B: Ajax Amsterdam | Arsenal | AS Roma | Valencia
Group C: AC Milan | Borussia Dortmund | L Moscow | Real Madrid
Group D: Basle | Deportivo | Juventus | Manchester Utd

Zaur Khapov (goalkeeper)
Born: 21.10.64
Nationality: Russian

Reliable and extremely experienced number two keeper who despite his age, is still remarkably agile. Won a Georgian League title with Dinamo Tbilisi in 1990 and the Russian championship with Alania Vladikavkaz in 1995.

Two full caps an international level and nearly two decades as a top-flight custodian have given him plenty of experience, so if first choice Sergei Ovchinnikov picks up an injury, Lokomotiv have a reliable back-up.

Yuri Drozdov (defender)
Born: 16.01.72
Nationality: Russian

One of Russia's foremost man-markers, he had to wait until the age of 27 to experience international football, making his debut against Armenia in March 1999.

Began his career at Dinamo Moscow and joined Lokomotiv back in 1993. Something of a bit part player in the first phase, he was used in the games against Galatasaray and Barcelona.

Vadim Evseev (defender)
Born: 08.01.76
Nationality: Russian

Pacey and creative right-back who can also do a good job in midfield. Learnt his trade at the Lokomotiv academy but started his professional career at Moscow Spartak, whom he helped win four League titles.

After a short spell with Torpedo Moscow, he returned to Lokomotiv in 2001. A hero for the club in the first phase of the Champions League as he scored the crucial winner against Galatasaray in Turkey.

Sergei Ignashevich (defender)
Born: 14.07.79
Nationality: Russian

Ignashevich

Has played as a sweeper and a defensive midfielder but is most effective in the stopper position, where he can exploit his physical strength and prowess in the air. Both Torpedo Moscow and Lokomotiv claimed to have signed him from Kryliya Sovetov last year but eventually Lokomotiv won the day.

Won his first cap in a friendly against Sweden last August. His powerful shooting from free-kicks may be a key for Lokomotiv in this second phase of the Champions League.

Jacob Lekgetho (defender)
Born: 24.03.77
Nationality: South African

Fast and skilful left-back or wing-back who is excellent going forward and has tightened up his defensive game since arriving in Russia last year. Used to play for the Moroka Swallows club in his homeland and was a member of South Africa's World Cup 2002 squad.

A strong tackler, he picked up a couple of bookings in the Champions League first round.

Gennadi Nizhegorodov (defender)
Born: 07.06.77
Nationality: Russian

The obdurate central defender forms a solid partnership at the heart of the Lokomotiv back-line with Ignashevich and Russian national team coach Valeri Gazzayev seems tempted to play them together on a regular basis.

Arrived from Lokomotiv Nizhny Novograd in the winter of 2000. Commentators will doubtless be hoping this player does not feature heavily as that name is a little difficult to pronounce.

Oleg Pachinin (defender)
Born: 12.09.74
Nationality: Uzbek

Lokomotiv youth team product and valuable utility man who can operate in a number of roles at the back or in deep in midfield. Has spent all his career at Lokomotiv apart from a loan stint with Japanese club Sanfrecce Hiroshima in 2001.

Along with teammate Vladimir Miminov, he recently accepted an offer to take up Uzbek citizenship and play for their national team.

Dmitri Sennikov (defender)
Born: 24.06.76
Nationality: Russian

Versatile defender who is equally at home on either flank. A quick and a robust tackler, Sennikov broke into the Russian national team set-up last spring and made one substitute appearance at the World Cup, the 3-2 loss to Belgium.

One of the central figure in this Lokomotiv side, coach Yuri Semine puts a lot of faith in the abilities of Sennikov.

Julio Cesar (midfielder)
Born: 26.02.80
Nationality: Brazilian

Julio Cesar

Talented attacking midfielder signed from Rio de Janeiro outfit Fluminense last August. Lively and blessed with typically extravagant Brazilian ball-skills, he has settled in very quickly in Russian football and has earned much praise for his willingness to graft for the team.

Scored a vital goal in Lokomotiv's final group game against FC Brugge as they confirmed their spot in the second phase of this competition.

Dmitri Loskov (midfielder)
Born: 12.02.74
Nationality: Russian

Hard-working central midfielder with an eye for goal bought from Rostselmash Rostov in 1997. A free-kick specialist, he has averaged 14 goals from midfield for the past four seasons and was the Russian top-flight's leading scorer in the 2000 campaign with 15 strikes.

Not on World Cup finals duty this summer but recently recalled, he is proving his class against Europe's elite this season. Sent off against FC Brugge in the first phase of the Champions League, he also scored twice in this competition.

Vladimir Maminov (midfielder)
Born: 04.09.74
Nationality: Uzbek

Another graduate of the prolific Lokomotiv soccer academy, he is one of their most consistent performers. A complete midfielder, he harries and tackles, sets up chances and scores his share of goals too.

An experienced campaigner, he was a regular starter for coach Yuri Semine during the first phase of the Champions League.

Bennett Mnguni (midfielder)
Born: 18.03.74
Nationality: South African

Bought from Mamelodi Sundowns in February 2002, he is best known in his native land as a ball-winner but can also line up just behind the strikers.

A member of South Africa's World Cup squad that failed to spark in the Far East, he didn't make an appearance in the finals during the summer.

Lokomotiv have yet to see the best of Mnguni, but he is a player with plenty of quality in his boots.

Milan Obradovic (midfielder)
Born: 03.08.77
Nationality: Yugoslav

Technically-accomplished right-sided midfielder who signed from Belgrade club Obilic in the summer of 2001. Can play in a wing-back position, he gained plenty of Champions League experience last season and has improved as a result this term.

A full Yugoslav international, he won his first cap in a friendly against Northern Ireland in Belfast in August 2000.

Baba Adamu (forward)
Born: 20.10.79
Nationality: Ghanaian

Baba Adamu

Livewire young striker mainly used as a substitute, he is an interesting option to throw on late in a game.

Played for the Al Shabab club in the United Arab Emirates for four years before moving to Russia, where he turned out for Chernomorets and Rostselmash before signing for Lokomotiv early this year.

At the age of 23, he has time to prove he can emerge as a striker capable of making an impact at Champions League level.

Maksim Buznikin (forward)
Born: 01.03. 77
Nationality: Russian

Diminutive front runner considered to be the best dribbler in the country. Won three Russian League titles in two spells with Moscow Spartak and has also played for the Saturn club.

Joined Lokomotiv from Spartak last year and he will be delighted to see his new club progress further than his old in Europe's premier competition.

A full international but did not go to the World Cup finals and then coach Oleg Romantsev questioned his work-rate. Out to prove his critics wrong in the Champions League this season.

James Obiorah (forward)
Born: 24.08.78
Nationality: Nigerian

Formerly with Grasshopper Zurich and Anderlecht, the young striker or attacking midfielder has proved a sensation since arriving at Lokomotiv early in 2001, making and taking chances with considerable aplomb.

Won a late call-up to Nigeria's World Cup party and played against England. Scored a goal in the first phase of the Champions League, but it could not avert a 3-1 defeat for Lokomotiv.

Serguei Ovtchinnikov (forward)
Born: 07.12. 84
Nationality: Russian

Highly-rated teenage attacker, who has been winning rave reviews for his displays with Russia's Under 19 team. Joined Lokomotiv from FC Krasnodar this summer and he has made a first team impact in the last few months.

Learnt his football at the famous Olympic Sports School in Volgograd. Has virtually the same name as Lokomotiv keeper Sergei Ovchinnikov.

Ruslan Pimenov (forward)
Born: 25.11.81
Nationality: Russian

An outstanding young prospect, he is a player who deserves the chance to prove his worth in the Champions League. Pacey and very determined, he has done well as a central striker, right-winger or in the 'hole' behind the front-men.

Has represented Russia at all levels, making his full international debut against Belarus in May of this year and playing twice in the World Cup finals. A graduate of the Torpedo Moscow academy.

Narvik Sirkhayev (forward)
Born: 16.03.74
Nationality: Azerbaijani

Tricky winger who can operate on either flank, Sirkhayev has been getting plenty of first team action this season.

Started his career at CSKA Moscow but it was at Anzhi that he really came good, helping them obtain a fine fourth-place finish in the Russian League of 2000 and scoring against Lokomotiv in the Cup Final the following year. His team lost that showpiece on penalties but he was rewarded with a move to Lokomotiv.