We help you pick out a Belarusian Premier League team to follow

Belarusian Premier League: The main statistics and facts to help you pick a team to follow


The only footballing action you'll be able to find anywhere in Europe comes from Belarus, with their Premier League going ahead as scheduled.

The top domestic leagues are on hold due to the coronavirus pandemic, with sport across the board being stopped for the foreseeable future.

However, Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko has refused to cancel anything meaning that their top football league continues.

The league sees the winner qualify for the Champions League first qualifying round, while the two who finish below enter the Europa League first qualifying round.

The bottom two are relegated and the team who finishes in 14th competes in a relegation play-off to try and keep their spot in the division.

The season may only be three games in but it's already looking like yet another intriguing campaign. Can Energetik keep up their unbeaten run? Will Belshina secure their first point soon?

To help you pick a team to follow and secure bragging rights in the group chat, our friends at Opta have put together the main statistics and figures behind each team in Belarus' top-flight.

Alongside that, and to give you a bit of a helping hand, we've made comparisons with familiar names from the English football pyramid.


FC Bate Borisov

A general view of the Borisov-Arena
  • BATE Borisov are the most successful club in the history of the Belarus Premier League, winning 15 titles since its inception in 1992.
  • Since their debut year in 1998, BATE have finished in the top-three of the Belarus Premier League in all but one season, finishing 5th in the 2005 season.
  • Last season was the first time since 2005 that BATE failed to win the Belarus Premier League, finishing 2nd behind Dinamo Brest; they had won 13 consecutive titles before that.
  • BATE are the only Belarusian team to play in the Champions League group stages, featuring in five different tournaments (most recently in 2015/16), although they are yet to progress beyond the group stage.
  • BATE have provided the Belarus Premier League player of the year in each of the last five seasons, with Ihar Stasevich winning it on four of those five occasions.

Compare with... Manchester United - historically a very successful club but seem to be struggling this season.


Belshina

  • Belshina have competed in 20 previous Belarus Premier League seasons, winning the league title once in the 2001 campaign.
  • Since winning the league title in 2001, Belshina have failed to finish the top-three of the Belarus Premier League, with their best ranking since then a 4th place finish in 2015.
  • Belshina were the first team to win the Belarus Premier League and then be subsequently relegated, going down in 2004 just three years after their title victory in 2001.
  • This season is Belshina’s first season in the Belarus Premier League since 2016, when they finished second bottom with 25 points and were relegated.

Compare with... Blackburn - won the league ages ago but are now nowhere near the top-end of their football pyramid.


Dinamo Brest

Diego Maradona on his trip to Belarus
  • Dinamo Brest won the Belarus Premier League last season, their first title in the competition.
  • Dinamo Brest are one of only four teams to appear in every single season of the Belarus Premier League since 1992.
  • Before last season’s title win, Dinamo Brest had finished in the top-three of the Belarus Premier League just once previously, in the first ever campaign in 1992, coming 3rd.
  • On their way to winning the Belarus Premier League last season, Dinamo Brest didn’t lose a single away game (W12 D3).

Compare with... Leicester - only won the Premier League once? We're chucking the two teams in blue together.


Dinamo Minsk

Delight for Dinamo Minsk in 2018 (they would lose go on to the reverse leg 8-1)
  • Dinamo Minsk have won seven Belarus Premier League titles, the second-most behind BATE Borisov’s tally of 15.
  • Since their last title victory in 2004, Dinamo Minsk have finished runners-up on seven occasions in the Belarus Premier League, more than any other side in that time.
  • After winning six of the first seven editions of the Belarus Premier League between 1992 and 1997, Dinamo Minsk have won just one since then, in 2004.
  • In finishing 4th last season, Dinamo Minsk finished outside the top-three of the Belarus Premier League for the first time since the 2011 season, when they also came 4th.
  • Since Belarus gained independence in 1991, Dinamo Minsk are the only Belarusian team to progress in a major UEFA European knockout tie, eliminating FK Austria Wien in the first round of the UEFA Cup in 1995-96. They were knocked out in the next round by Werder Bremen.

Compare with... Arsenal - both teams used to be very successful but now they're just battling to secure a European spot. Both also last won the title in 2004.


Energetyk-BGU

  • This season is Energetyk-BGU’s sixth in the Belarus Premier League – their highest finish is 12th, which they have achieved three times previously.
  • Last season, the top scorer in the Belarus Premier League was Energetyk-BGU’s Ilya Shkurin with 19 goals – he has since joined CSKA Moscow.
  • Energetyk-BGU’s eight wins in the Belarus Premier League last season was their best total in a single campaign in the competition.
  • Energetyk-BGU have already won as many league games this season as they managed during their 2005 Belarus Premier League campaign when they came 13th and were relegated (three wins).

Compare with... Brighton - both secured promotion to the Premier League fairly recently although you wouldn't have either competing at the top-end of the division.


FC Minsk

FC Minsk in action against Dinamo Minsk
  • FC Minsk achieved their highest Belarus Premier League finish in 2010, finishing 3rd.
  • Minsk won just 16 of their 60 league matches across the 2018 and 2019 seasons (W16 D18 L26).
  • Since their 3rd place finish in 2010, the highest FC Minsk have finished in the Belarus Premier League was 4th in 2016, just two points behind 3rd.
  • FC Minsk have picked up 28 points in their last 11 home league matches (W9 D1 L1), as many as they managed in their previous 32 home league games (W4 D16 L12).

Compare with... Everton - they're both just there, hanging around upper mid-table.


FC Slutsk

  • Since being promoted in 2013, FC Slutsk have finished between 7th and 12th in each of their Belarus Premier League seasons.
  • Among the eight ever-present Belarus Premier League teams since 2014, FC Slutsk have won the fewest points of all eight (215 in 181 games).
  • FC Slutsk’s best finish in the Belarus Premier League was achieved during the 2017 season, when they came 7th and won 44 points.
  • FC Slutsk have already won two league matches in three attempts this season – it took them 12 games last season to win two league games.

Compare with... Burnley - comfortable mid-table team since promotion but surprised everyone with 7th place finishes in 2017/18. Both seem to suffer slow starts to a campaign.


FC Vitebsk

  • FC Vitebsk have never won the Belarus Premier League in their previous 24 campaigns, with their best finish 2nd in 1992-93 and 1994-95.
  • In 2018, Vitebsk finished 4th in the Belarus Premier League, their best finish since 1998 when they also came 4th.
  • Vitebsk haven’t finished in the top-three of the Belarus Premier League since 1997, when they finished 3rd.
  • In 2019, Vitebsk won just 31 points in the Belarus Premier League, exactly half of the total they won in the 2018 season when they won 62 points.
  • Vitebsk competed in the Europa League qualifying phase this season (losing 3-1 on aggregate to KuPS in the first qualifying round), their first taste of European football since the 1999-00 season, when they played in the Intertoto Cup.

Compare with... Newcastle - both were class teams in the 1990s but since then it's not really happened for them. There's also been time spent in the second division.


Gorodeya

  • Gorodeya made their Belarus Premier League debut in 2016, finishing 9th.
  • After three consecutive 9th place finishes in 2016, 2017 and 2018, Gorodeya came 7th last season to register their best Belarus Premier League finish.

Compare with... Crystal Palace - both seem solid mid-table sides since their promotions to their respective top-flights.


Isloch Minsk

  • 2020 is Isloch Minsk’s fifth season in the Belarus Premier League since winning promotion in 2015.
  • Isloch Minsk’s best Belarus Premier League finish was achieved last season, when they came 5th with 47 points.
  • Since the 2016 season, Isloch Minsk have conceded more Belarus Premier League goals than any other team (161).
  • As well as finishing 5th last season, Isloch Minsk also reached the semi-final of the Belarusian Cup, losing 6-4 on aggregate to Shakhtyor.

Compare with... Leeds - United's best finish in the Premier League was 3rd back in 2000 and they were mostly battling around that position since the revamp in 1992. Isloch also wear blue, yellow and white.


Neman Grodno

Vintage action involving Neman Grodno back in 2014
  • Neman Grodno are one of only four teams to have competed in every season of the Belarus Premier League, along with Dinamo Minsk, Dinamo Brest and Shakhtyor.
  • Neman Grodno are the only one of the four teams to have competed in every season of the Belarus Premier League who have failed to win the competition.
  • The 2002 Belarus Premier League season represented Neman Grodno’s best campaign in the competition, when they finished 2nd and lost the title in a play-off match against BATE Borisov, who they had finished level on points with.
  • Neman Grodno’s most recent European match was in 2014-15 in the Europa League qualifying phase, losing in the first qualifying round against FH of Iceland.
  • Since finishing 2nd in 2002, Neman Grodno have never finished in the top-three of the Belarus Premier League, with 4th in 2013 their best finish since then.

Compare with... Tottenham - have never been relegated but have never really done anything either. European football is the aim as opposed to securing the title. Both have come pretty close at one point to lifting the trophy though.


Rukh Brest

  • Rukh Brest are competing in the Belarus Premier League for the first time in 2020.
  • Only founded in 2016, Rukh Brest won promotion from the Belarusian First League in 2019 to earn promotion to the top-flight.

Compare with... Huddersfield - a difficult one given how Rukh were only formed in 2016 but their appearance in the Premier League surprised everyone.


Shakhtyor Soligorsk

Shakhtyor Soligorsk in Europa League action
  • Shakhtyor have competed in every season of the Belarus Premier League, one of only four teams to do so.
  • In 2005, Shakhtyor registered their one and only title-victory in the Belarus Premier League, finishing 13 points clear of 2nd place to top the table.
  • Shakhtyor have finished runners-up in the Belarus Premier League on six previous occasions, with only Dinamo Minsk finishing 2nd more often (9 times).
  • Since an 11th place finish in 1998, Shakhtyor have never finished outside the top-six in the Belarus Premier League and have finished at least 3rd in each of the last 10 seasons.
  • Shakhtyor have competed in 12 major UEFA European qualifying campaigns without ever qualifying for the tournament proper, most recently in the 2019/20 Europa League when they reached the third qualifying phase before losing 6-1 on aggregate to Torino.

Compare with... Chelsea - a regular in the European places and have something to show in their trophy cabinets. Never been relegated and doesn't look like that will happen anytime soon.


Slavia Mozyr

  • Slavia Mozyr have twice won the Belarus Premier League, winning the title in 1996 and 2000 - only BATE (15) and Dinamo Minsk (7) have won it more often.
  • Since they won the Belarus Premier League in 2000, Slavia Mozyr have never finished above 7th in the top-flight, and have been relegated three times.
  • In their 2000 title-winning season, Raman Vasilyuk scored 31 goals for Slavia Mozyr – the most goals by a player for the title-winning side in a Belarus Premier League season.
  • Slavia Mozyr played in the UEFA Cup in the 1997-98 season, although they were eliminated in the first round against Dinamo Tbilisi.

Compare with... Stoke - alright this a tough one but both won a division back in the 1990s. Since then, it's been the lower-end of the table and relegation. Both have made an appearance in UEFA's second competition though.


Smolevichi-STI

  • Smolevichi-STI have only competed in one previous Belarus Premier League season, relegated in 2018 before winning promotion again from the second tier in 2019.
  • In 2018, Smolevichi-STI were relegated from the Belarus Premier League on head-to-head points, having finished level on points with Luch Minsk and Torpedo Minsk.

Compare with... Norwich - have been in the Premier League before but their top-flight appearances are short.


Torpedo Zhodino

  • Torpedo Zhodino played in the first-ever Belarus Premier League campaign in 1992 and were then relegated the next campaign before returning to the league in 2002.
  • Torpedo Zhodino’s best finish in the Belarus Premier League is 4th, which they have achieved four times – in 2004, 2005, 2007 and 2014.
  • Torpedo Zhodino have participated in three previous Europa League qualifying campaigns – in 2010-11, 2015-16 and 2016-17 – but have never reached the competition proper.

Compare with... Southampton - Premier League regulars for a while now and have finished in the European places. Both also boast appearances in cup finals.


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