Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Poland October 2008

Cold & Even.

Polonia Warsaw 1 Cracovia 1

One of three games in the Polish 'Premier'.

In a small stadium, a walkable distance from the recreated old town, some 3500 or so braved the wind, rain and cold. There were only a handful of away fans.

Polonia were top before this game but played more like a middle of the table team.

Cracovia scored early through Kasuba after a nice left wing drive by the tall Milosevic.

The home ultras brought out their flags and got the noise going.

Five minutes into the second half a decisive Lato free kick secured the equaliser.

After that there were some near things at both ends but no more goals.

Nice Centre.

Slask Wroclaw 2 Arka Gdynia 1

Wroclaw gets less tourists than Krakow but it does have a very pleasant central area.

From which it takes around 35 minutes to get to the Slask Wroclaw stadium.

The ground does include some temporary style stands. At one end the 50 or so Arka fans congregated for a while before disappearing with about half an hour to go.

The home ultras got the banners up around the periphery and started the hands up clapping - even the press in the main stand joined in.

This was another hard fought game. Slask went in front after about 15 minutes and were rather surprised when Arka equalised with a Anderson header on the stroke of half time.

Top scorer Szweczuk got the winner.


Ruch Chorzow 2 Lech Poznan 0

Take the train to this one and you arrive at Chorzow Batory station in the midst of the somewhat intimidating home fans. They cluster around the shops and amongst the trees before kick-off.

Most wear blue but many also have red - the colours of 'partner' team Widzew Lodz.

A good crowd of 10,000 saw this with around 400 fans from Poznan isolated at the left hand end.

The stadium has a striking main stand perhaps reminiscent of Springfield Park, Wigan. The rest is typically circular ends with about 10 rows of seats all round. The leading home ultras are to the right. They produce the flares (see pics) and coordinate the chants.

Ruch got the goals in the first half and tended to back off later in the game. Lech didn't manage to get too close apart from a late scramble.

The home fans seem to disperse happily enough as I waited for my return train to Zabrze.

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