From Tractor to Torpedo, the curious case of FC Rostov, David Bentley's new club

Few will be surprised David Bentley has finally left Tottenham after a miserable four years at White Hart Lane, but nobody expected him to end up on loan in the Russian top flight.

But as the midfielder prepares to pack his suitcase with the warmest winter garments he can find, Sportsmail gives you the lowdown on his new side, FC Rostov.

So who are this lot?

Rostov are a club that has undergone more name changes than Prince. Starting out in 1930 as Selmashstroy, they switched to Selmash six years later and Tractor in 1941, the latter being the flavour of the month when they played their first official match in 1950.

Yellow fellows: FC Rostov is the new - and surprising - home of David Bentley

Yellow fellows: FC Rostov is the new - and surprising - home of David Bentley

In 1953 they became Torpedo before the name Rostselmash was taken up five years later. They stuck with that until 2003 when FC Rostov was introduced.

And I thought Cardiff fans had it bad when their club switched the kit colour, have they at least played in the same area through all those changes?

In fairness they have played at the Olympus 2 Stadium in Rostov-On-Don, which is around 100 miles from Donetsk in Ukraine, since formation.

The ground is an all-seater one-tier stadium and holds 15,840, but as part of their bid to host matches at World Cup 2018, the club have submitted plans for a new stade-of-the-art centre.

Any pots in the trophy cabinet?

No major ones although they came close after narrowly losing the Russian Cup final to Spartak Moscow in 2003. While Bentley was sealing a £15m switch to Tottenham in 2008 they won the second tier championship in Russian football... if that counts.

For this: Rostov currently play in front of a capacity crowd of 15,840...

For this: Rostov currently play in front of a capacity crowd of 15,840...

To this: A new state-of-the-art stadium has been planned for the World Cup

To this: A new state-of-the-art stadium has been planned for the World Cup

No, it doesn’t. What's their highest league placing?

Since becoming a member of the Russian top flight in 1992 their best placing was sixth in 1998. They have been relegated twice in the last 20 years but have won instant promotion on both occasions.

Any European nights?

Consecutive appearances in the Intertoto Cup in 1999 and 2000 are their only continental showings to date. The first time around they were trounced 9-1 on aggregate by Juventus in the semi-final, while a year on in the third round, they lost their only tie against Auxerre 5-1 on aggregate.

Enough of the history lessons, who is the manager lucky enough to play the midfielder formerly known as the next David Beckham?
That would be Miodrag Bozovic. He’s only been in charge since June but has a fair reputation in the top flight of dragging sides away from a relegation fight. The 44-year-old’s best success was guiding Amkar Perm to the Europa League for the first time in 2008.

Any star players we may know about?

Man in charge: Miodrag Bozovic

Man in charge: Miodrag Bozovic

Bentley aside, Roman Adamov is a handy striker for the club and has been top scorer for the past two terms. After making a two-year loan deal from Rubin Kazan a permanent switch this year, the 30-year-old is back for a second spell following a period at Rostov between 2001-2004.

Alongside Roman Pavlyuchenko, he was the Russian league’s top scorer in 2007 and featured for Russia at Euro 2008.

Any other names we may know?

Just a couple. Stipe Pletikosa became the club's No. 1 keeper last year following a short spell at Tottenham, while former Liverpool striker Florent Sinama Pongolle is also on the books. Not bad for a club that was suffering financial difficulties last season.

And it wasn't just financial difficulties that have had the club worried recently.

Correct, they struggled on-field as well, finishing 13th last season and only surviving the drop into the second tier by winning a relegation play-off.

In truth it’s like that every season. In a field of 16 they haven’t recorded a top-eight finish in the Premier division since 1999.

So what has DB got himself into? How are Rostov doing this term?

True to form, another battle against relegation. After seven games they lie 13th with just one win. The glory days of the Intertoto Cup look to be long gone.

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