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Sergei Pavlovich Baltacha

Personal information
Full nameSergei Pavlovich Baltacha
Date of birth17 February 1958(age 58)
Place of birthMariupol, Ukrainian SSR
Playing positionDefender

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Sergei Pavlovich Baltacha ( ) (born 17 February 1958 in Mariupol) is a former professional football player who won 45 full caps for the Soviet Union and made nearly 300 appearances for Dynamo Kiev.

Baltacha was on the winning side in the Cup Winners' Cup in 1986, the Soviet Top League and Soviet Cup four times, and the Soviet Super Cup on three occasions. He also appeared in the FIFA World Cup in 1982, was a finalist in the European Championships in 1988 and won Olympic Bronze in 1980. His later career was spent in England and Scotland, playing for Ipswich Town and St. Johnstone. His debut for Ipswich (in which he scored) was the first time a Soviet international had played in the Football League. He also had a brief spell as manager of Inverness Caledonian Thistle.

His former wife, Olga, master of sports in athletics, could have been on the Soviet olympic pentathlon team in 1980 Summer Olympics, but instead opted to remain at home to care for her one year old son.

Baltacha is currently married to Oksana.

His and Olga's son, Sergei Jr, is also a footballer, who played for St. Mirren and has been capped at U-21 level for Scotland. He currently plays with junior outfit Petershill. Sergei's and Olga's daughter Elena is a professional tennis player.

Baltacha is currently a physical education teacher and tutor at Bacon's College in South East London, having formerly been a physical education teacher at Geoffrey Chaucer Technology College (Old Kent Road, London) and a coach at the Charlton Athletic academy.

Although he was born in the Ukrainian part of the Soviet Union, Baltacha regards himself to be Russian.

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