Belarusian forward Vitali Rodionov retires to become BATE sporting director

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Belarusian forward Vitali Rodionov retires to become BATE sporting director

Belarusian striker of FC BATE Borisov Vitaly Rodionov has finished his career as a football player, the press service of BATE said.

In November 2017, before the home match of the group round of the Europa League against Serbian Crvena Zvezda (0:0), some media reported that Rodionov was leaving football. However, the athlete himself did not confirm this information, calling it rumors.

"Forward Vitaly Rodionov has decided to end his playing career," said in BATE.

The club added that Rodionov does not say goodbye to BATE and will continue to work at the club.

"FC BATE on behalf of their fans thanks Vitaly Rodionov for a huge contribution to the club's achievements!" the club added.

In turn, the 34-year-old Rodionov thanked the leadership of the club, team-mates and fans. Separately, he thanked his first mentors Valery Novikov and Vladimir Voitekhovich. According to Rodionov, they "kindled in the young boy an irrepressible desire and passion for the game, which helped throughout the career."

Rodionov moved to BATE in early 2006 and since then has played 412 matches in the team and scored 161 goals. 

Together with the Yellow-Blues he became the champion of Belarus 12 times, won the Cup of the country 3 times and the Super Cup of Belarus 6 times.

Update 24.01.2018:

Vitaly Rodionov officially became BATE's sporting director. He is also known for his favorable attitude to Belarusian language. The usage of Belarusian has become more popular in the country in recent years and maybe this could help promote football in Belarus.