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Russian football's top tier is called the Russian Premier League, it contains sixteen teams, with two clubs relegated to the Russian First Division at the end of each season, with two from that league taking their place. The league was established in 2001, replacing the Top Division and handing more power to the clubs.
Following the break up of the Soviet Union, in 1992 the six Russian teams who had played in the Soviet Top League were joined by 14 teams from lower divisions to organize a 20-team Russian Top Division, that was split in two to reduce the number of games played. In 1993 the league was reduced to 18 teams and by 1994 reached the current total of sixteen.