‘I learned to think faster’


Sergey Mikhailov signed for Anzhi after two years at Marcet, where he was looking to ‘learn to play like a European footballer’.

In June of this year Sergey Mikhailov finished his career at Marcet’s High-Performance Academy. After his second year in Barcelona, FK Anzhí Majachkalá came knocking on his door. The Russian Premier League club was looking for a right-back for their U21s team. An opportunity that Sergey could not refuse.

The Anzhi is a young club, but there are many stars who have worn their yellow shirt. Founded in 1991, its name began to ring some bells around the globe from 2011, when billionaire Suleiman Kerimov took control of the brand and started signing players like Roberto Carlos and Samuel Eto’o, as well as coaches like Guus Hiddink.

It’s an honour to play in a team of such level,” says Sergey, who is currently playing in the UEFA Youth League, the most prestigious international youth tournament for clubs in the world. “We’re travelling a lot,” explains the young athlete, an indisputable piece of Russian team’s starting eleven.

Sergey started playing as a child for a team of Ulan Ude, the city that he was born in. “I met Marcet for some friends, I decided to follow suit and train in Barcelona with the goal of making progress and learning to play like a European footballer,” recalls the Russian defender, whose place in the market is valued at € 25,000 according to the specialized website Transfermarkt.

El lateral Sergey Mikhailov en un partido disputando con el FK Anzhí Majachkalá.
ESergey Mikhailov plays a match for FK Anzhí Majachkalá.

Sergey started going to Marcet in 2014, for a summer intensive. As is often the case, these courses served as a gateway to the High-Performance Academy, where he stayed for two seasons. “With Marcet I could face rivals like Atlético de Madrid, Sevilla, Villarreal, Osasuna…” says the winger. He also participated in tours in Madrid, Portugal and France, where he began to understand that to be a football player you have to travel. A lot.

At Marcet almost every day I had two practice sessions, which really helped get things moving in terms of progress. I started making the right decisions, playing and thinking faster. I went back to Russia a better player than I was when I left,” explains Sergey. The young defender isn’t short of ambitious short-term goals: “I just started out in Anzhi’s Under-2, but this winter I want to make the first team and to the Russian national team.”

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