KYIV: Anatoliy Konkov, a distinguished player in the 1970s and former Soviet international, has been elected new president of the Football Federation of Ukraine at its XIV Congress.

The former  Shakhtar Donetsk, Dynamo Kyiv and Soviet Union  midfielder takes over from Grigoriy Surkis. President since 2000, Surkis decided not to stand for a fourth mandate and will  as honorary president after being  key figure in organising Euro 2012 along with co-hosts Poland.

Konkov, 62, said: “During my reign as FFU president, I see my main task not only in continuing the activity of my predecessors but in producing new ideas which could benefit Ukrainian football’s future. The FFU’s priority is to ensure the revival of grassroots football. The FFU will continue to support FIFA and UEFA initiatives aimed at the future development of football.”

An Avangard Kramatorsk academy product, Konkov started his professional career at Shakhtar in 1968. He moved to Dynamo six years later and helped the club win the European Cup-winners  Cup and UEFA Super Cup in 1975. He also won four Soviet league titles (1975, 1977, 1980 and 1981) and the USSR Cup in 1978.

A defensive midfielder in his early years before switching to a libero role, Mr Konkov scored eight goals in 47 appearances for the Soviet Union, captaining the side in 1977 and 1978. He was a runner-up at the 1972 UEFA European Championship and helped the Soviet Union claim bronze at the 1976 Olympics.

He retired from football in 1981 and went into coaching with Tavriya Simferopol, Shakhtar, Zenit St Petersburg and Vorskla Poltava in Ukraine and abroad with FC Inter Baku in Azerbaijan.

He also worked with Ukraine’s Under-21 team and was in charge of the senior side during the second half of the Euro 96 qualifying competition, handing an international debut to an 18-year-old Andriy Shevchenko. More recently, he served as a sporting director for second-tier FC Stal Alchevsk.


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