Who are Lokomotiv? A guide to Al Ain’s Asian Champions League quarter-final opponents

Want to know more about Al Ain's Asian Champions League quarter-final opponents? John McAuley has you covered.

Midfielder Server Djeparov is Lokomotiv's star player and has twice been named Asian Player of the Year. Karim Sahib / AFP
Powered by automated translation

Want to know more about Al Ain’s Asian Champions League quarter-final opponents? John McAuley has you covered.

Background

Qualified for Asian Champions League by finishing runners-up in the 2015 Uzbek top flight to Pakhtakor. Unbeaten in Group A, Lokomotiv progressed as winners of the pool, making the knockout stages for the first time in the club’s history. Defeated the tournament specialists Al Hilal in the last round, 2-1 on aggregate. Still yet to suffer a loss this campaign.

More from Al Ain v Lokomotiv:

• Build-up: Zlatko Dalic 'not happy' at lack of time to prepare Al Ain for quarter-final first leg

• John McAuley comment: Al Ain have chance to salvage underwhelming 2016 with Champions League success

Star player — Server Djeparov

One of Uzbekistan football’s most recognisable names, the midfielder has twice been crowned Asia’s Player of the Year in 2008 and 2011. Enjoyed multiple successes at Pakhtakor and Bunyodkor, capturing eight Uzbek league titles, while he was also part of championship-winning sides in South Korea and Saudi Arabia. Although aged 33, Djeparov has played an integral role in Lokomotiv’s run to the quarter-finals.

A creative midfielder of significant stock who provides goals and assists, his continued influence was evident in the last-16, second-leg against Al Hilal, when he created both the home team’s goals as Lokomotiv triumphed 2-1 to progress.

Key men

• Ignatiy Nesterov — A hugely experienced goalkeeper at club and international level, he provides reassurance for the team's defence. Has featured in Champions League semi-finals three times previously.

• Timur Kapadze — Another player with substantial experience of Champions League's end stages, he has reached the last-four stage three times as well. Club captain who coaxes and cajoles from midfield.

Manager — Andrey Miklyaev

A success since being promoted from assistant manager in January, both domestically and on the continent. The Uzbek guided Lokomotiv past the group stages — a feat never before achieved by the club — and then masterminded the last-16 victory against 2014 Champions League finalists Al Hilal. Has worked wonders at home, with Lokomotiv riding high at the top of the Uzbek league.