Sasja Rodionov (Cyrillic Сасья Родионов, IPA /ˈsɑˌɕɑ ˈro̞diˌo̞nɑv/) is a former Uralican Estonian football (soccer) goalkeeper, born 25 September 1974 in Kohtla-Järve, who plays for Sikkivukarin Palloseura (SiPS) in the Bolakliiga and other competitions, such as Liga Mundo. Statistically, he was the strongest goalkeeper in the abbreviated inaugural season of the Bolakliiga, allowing just eight goals in 17 matches played.
His exploits in Liga Mundo are also something to behold. In the inaugural season of the Serie Tercera, he came in after a few matches and helped SiPS in their astonishing run which saw them win twelve out of fourteen and all seven home matches, as well as pulling off perhaps the biggest upset in Liga Mundo history when they knocked Atlético Luz Del Mar, one of the vaunted "Big Three" from Liga Mundo's Serie Primera, out of the El Legado Cup, before they finally bowed out in the final to VolNation. En route, the club pulled off upset after upset.
Injuries would keep him out for a sizable stretch of the fourth season, and it took him time to find his form as SiPS were on a slump when he returned. However, when he regained his form, he showed it in a big way as he got three clean sheets in as many matches played to end the season.
Although there had been questions about him potentially retiring in the near future, Rodionov had said that he has no plans to do so within at least the next two seasons, although a head injury and his apparent age changed this.
However, he was the #3 goalie behind younger goalkeepers Yevgeny Kudymov and Achim Tsyplakov during Alliance Cup 2009 and would only play one match, a 6-0 hammering of Land of the Jdawg in which he was practically a spectator. This led some to criticise his commitment to his country, however counter-critics suggested a behind-the-scenes row between Uralican national team manager Raimond Kuik and SiPS manager Teppo Kostamo is more to blame.
His other international match was much more eventful for the most part, but he came up strong in a 3-1 home win in an unsanctioned friendly against the Arizonan Confederation, a match in which the Uralicans were outchanced 10-8.
Off-Pitch Facts Edit
- Naturally, being Uralican, he shares the national propensity for musical endeavours. He is part of an indie band and plays bass guitar.
- He speaks six languages fluently - Võru (his mother tongue), Estonian, Finnish, Russian, English, and Komi (Zyrian). He is also learning Hungarian from teammate Bali Szívós.
- At 6' and 175 lbs, he is the shortest and lightest of Uralica's national team's goalkeepers that were involved in the Alliance Cup.
- He is married (wife Jessika) and has a son and a daughter.