Recently the Russian Premier League announced its intention to expand from 16 teams to 18 in the near future. Originally, this was just going to be implementing that by promoting Tom Tomsk and Nizhny Novgorod, who finished 3rd and 4th in the FNL last season. When I was making it though, I decided to fiddle more and more with the lower leagues and in the end decided to completely remake the lower reaches of Russian football.
The Premier League still works as it does in real life, just with two extra teams. The 18th and 17th placed teams are directly relegated, whilst the 16th and 15th play 3rd and 4th from the FNL in a two-legged playoff for promotion/survival.
The FNL is mostly the same too. The gaps left by Nizhny Novgorod and Tomsk are filled by Zenit-2, relegated last year, and Sakhalin Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk, who declined promotion to the FNL last year. The only difference is that only the bottom two are relegated directly, with 18th and 17th playing 3rd and 4th from the new third tier in another two-legged promotion playoff.
The first new major addition is a nation-wide third tier to replace the regional divisions that made up Russia's third level before. The PFL has 22 teams, with the top two promoted and 3rd and 4th entering the playoffs. The bottom four are relegated to the fourth tier.
The fourth tier is made up of two groups of 18 teams. The winner of each group is promoted directly to the PFL, while 2nd and 3rd in each league enters a two-legged playoff to win promotion. The team which finishes last in each group is relegated to the fifth tier.
The fifth tier is the boundary between professional and part-time football and the lowest division I've added. This level has four groups of 10 teams, which play each other twice. The winner of each group plays the winner of another over two legs for a spot in the fourth tier. The last placed team is relegated and replaced by a team from the regional championships.
-Kits and Stadiums for every team in the structure and all which can be promoted into it. No teams in generic blue kits and nameless stadiums appearing!
-Accurate (mostly) dates for the relegation playoffs, the Russian Cup and Russian Super Cup.
-Names of derbies which weren't included in the base game (There are a lot of Moscow derbies!).
-Mostly realistic attendances, buffed or nerfed in several places.
-Crimean clubs have been included in the pyramid. This is not a political statement, I just think it's sad to see historic clubs like Tavria rotting away in an unrecognised amateur league.
-I'd like the neutral venues for the Super Cup, Cup semi-finals and final to be more varied. As of right now they are mostly held at the Luzhniki with the odd exception, when I meant for these games to be spread across the World Cup Stadiums instead. Will work on a fix for this.
-The attendances for teams who are promoted to the top-flight might be quite low. It's hard to accurately portray just how much more interested fans become in Russia once their team is promoted to the Premier League. I'll try to fix this too, although I'm less confident than with the stadiums.