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Our team

Yury Zaytsev


Sports law, Labor law, Civil law, Corporate law.


Graduated from the Moscow State Law Academy, Specialization “Lawyer in sport, show business and advertising”, Thesis “Features of the employment contract termination in sport”.


Yury Zaitsev is an author of the book “Working life in the world of sports” about legal status of sportsmen and coaches, as well as the author of many publications on sports law.

Professional experience

Yury Zaitsev worked for the Football Union of Russia (FUR) for a long time, where he was executive secretary of FUR Disciplinary Committee, the member of FUR Players’ Status Committee, the member of FUR Players’ Agents Committee, and the expert on clubs’ licensing (legal and staffing criteria).
He participated in creating of FUR Regulations on the Players’ status and transfers, FUR Regulations on Players’ Agents activities, FUR Disciplinary Regulations, FUR Regulations on clubs’ licensing, as well as FUR competitions regulations. After leaving the Football Union of Russia Yury Zaitsev had moved to the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia Local Organizing Committee.


Mikhail Prokopets


Sports law, Labor law, Civil law.


Russian State University for the Humanities. History, politics and the law faculty.


The author of the following books:
“Football fair. The book about football agents”.
“Football disputes settlement. Analysis of RFU and FIFA DRCs, CAS cases”.
The author of number of articles on sports law. Deputy Editor-in-Chief  and author of the specialized edition «Sports law: scientific and practical magazine”.

Professional experience

2005-2008- Associate in the Russian Football Union (RFU). Author of the amendments to the Labor code!and the Federal law on sports and physical activity in Russian Federation.
2006- spring 2008- Executive secretary (voting member) of the RFU Disciplinary committee (jurisdictional football body).
Member of Football agents licensing body (2006-2008).
From 2006- Arbitrator of the Court of arbitration for sports (Moscow chamber).
From 2007- Expert of the Football clubs licensing and Stadiums licensing committee.
2008-2013- Senior associate and the Head of Sports law department in the “YUST” law firm.
From 2014- Legal adviser to the FC “Metallist” (Kharkov, Ukraine).


Georgi Gradev

Curriculum Vitae


Personal information:

Georgi Gradev

Born on 27 December 1975 in Sofia, Bulgaria


Work experience:

Owner & General Manager of GRADEV SPORTS (2004-2017)

Education and training:

University of National and Word Economy (Bulgaria)

University of Pittsburgh (USA)

Birkbeck, University of London (England) – International sports law (2009)

Football law experience:

Working in the field of football law since 2007


  • Football Legal

  • ASSER International Sports Law Journal

  • EPFL Sports Law Bulletin

  • IASL International Sports Law Review Pandektis

  • Еtc.


SILA (International Association of Sports Lawyers) – co-founder

IASL Case-Law Committee (since 2009)

Academic experience:

Visiting professor at the ISDE, Madrid (Masters in International Sports Law) – 2017

яковлева к

Ekaterina Yakovleva

Associated partner

Maria Tokmakova

Junior Associate


Ilya Chicherov

Junior Associate


Sports law, employment law, dispute resolution.


Bachelor degree: Law faculty of National Research University Higher School of Economics (2015)
Masters degree: «Lawyer in sports» Law faculty of National Research University Higher School of Economics (2017)
Level of foreign languages: English – «Advanced» (C1); French – «Intermédiaire» (В1).

 Professional experience

Prior to joining Legal Sport:
– worked as legal counsel in the holding “Group Acropol”;
– supervised the work with non-profit organizations.
In Legal Sport provides all-round legal support to non-commercial organizations in sports, represents athletes and sport clubs in judicial bodies of sport federations and also represents interests of the company’s clients in arbitral courts and courts of general jurisdiction.


“Several problems of legal regulation of labor of athletes”, I. Chicherov. Compilation of the Eleventh scientific-practical conference on labor law “Peculiarities of the legal regulation of labor of certain categories of employees”, Moscow, 2016.


Darina Nikitina

The head of sports and labor law practice

Professional experience

– civil and advertisement relation matters;
– labor relations of sportsman and coaches with clubs;
– transfer relation and association change;
– intermediaries and clubs relations;
– other maters arise from national and international federations and leagues regulations (FIFA, UEFA, RFU, KHL).


Sports law, Labor law, Litigation and arbitration.


Graduate from Moscow State University of Law
Foreign languages: English “Proficient level”
Participant and winner of competitions and conferences on the matters of sports law. Winner of grant of the Government of Russian Federation in 2013/2014 and of the President of Russian Federation in 2014/2015. Author of a number of publications on Third party player’s ownership (TPPO) issues.


“Third party ownership of economic rights of football players (TPPO). Brazilian scheme”, Nikitina D.P., Research and practice magazine “Sports law” no. 2, 2014;
 “How to join an Olympic national team, compete for the medals and the “Field of play” principle in CAS practice”, Nikitina D.P., Research and practice magazine “Sports law” no. 1, 2014;
“Nine facts about economic rights of football players”, Nikitina D.P., Research and practice magazine “Sports law” no. 6, 2013;
“Olympic ad hoc will not change the result of the competition, even in case of a wrong judgement”, Nikitina D.P., electronic public of “Russian agency on law and litigation information”
“Third party – owner of economic rights of a footballer”; Prokopets M.A., Nikitina D.P., Research and practice magazine “Sports law” no. 1, 2013;
“Matuzalem case” recalled by the decision of the Supreme court of Switzerland”, Nikitina D.P., Research and practice magazine “Sports law” no. 1, 2013;
“Guarantees for employees in dispute resolution of “labor-football” cases by RFU jurisdictional bodies”, Nikitina D.P., Research and practice magazine “Sports law” no. 4, 2013;