This is not the first time a football reference has been made on Offshore Energy Today. We’ve had our fair share of Zinedine Zidane photos used to illustrate the articles about a namesake Norwegian offshore oil field.

However, we just had to share this one. A football match on one of the world’s northernmost offshore production platform in the Arctic? Yes, please.

Zenit Football Club, a Russian team based in St. Petersburg, recently sent its players to the Gazprom-operated Prirazlomnaya platform, as part of a documentary to be shown soon on Russia’s national TV channel NTV (see the trailer below).

As for the platform, the ice-resistant unit is located in the Pechora Sea, 60 kilometers from the shore. It is the first — and, thus far, the only — platform producing oil from the Russian Arctic Shelf.

The film

According to information supplied by the football club, the idea of the film was inspired by a landmark historic event.

Zenit, with a reported fanbase of more than 15 million, describes the inspiration behind the movie: “On 17 September 1962, when the first Soviet nuclear submarine, K-3 reached the North Pole. A historic first, and almost immediately on reaching the ice – the submariners played football.”

They’ve now tried to recreate something similar, creating a football field for the modern competition aboard the Prirazlomnaya.

According to Zenit, the film’s directors have tried to bring to light the more secret, “closed” aspects of the football world — from stadium preparation for mass sporting events, to the subtleties of providing security for landmark football matches.

Viewers will also find out how oil is produced in the Arctic, as well as gaining insights into day-to-day life on a rig, including a drop-in visit to the Prirazlomnaya control center, often compared to the Space Station in terms of its complexity.

 

The main heroes of the documentary are Zenit 2016 first-team players Alexander Kokorin, Yuri Lodygin, Artem Dzyuba, Yuri Zhirkov, Nicholas Lomberts, and former player and current Zenit coach Sergei Semak, as well as workers on the Prirazlomnaya rig.

 

The match was a game of two halves, each of 15 minutes, between two five-a-side teams made up of Zenit players and Prirazlomnaya employees — one team comprising Artem Dzyuba and Nicholas Lomberts from Zenit, together with Alexei Utkin, Ildar Bikmukhametov, and Anton Byrylov from Prirazlomnaya, and the other Zenit players Alexander Kokorin, Yuri Zhirkov and Yuri Lodygin, playing with Andrei Starostoy and Maxim Dubrovin (with Dmitry Smykov as reserve). This unique match was referred by Sergei Semak.

The film named “Zenit — Prirazlomnaya: First in the Arctic” will be broadcast on Russian national TV channel NTV, at 11.30 pm , June 16, 2017, the night before the start of the FIFA Confederations Cup 2017.

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