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Polish Ekstraklasa 2018/2019 - league guide and all teams previews

2018.08.03 18:38 Klejnot__Nilu Polish Ekstraklasa 2018/2019 - league guide and all teams previews

Hello there. Today, I present you probably the most useless post in history of this subreddit - preview of Ekstraklasa, half league, half meme. I cordially invite, u/Rigelmeister, u/bluedsrule and u/Azarenka123, who expressed their interest.

Basic information

Country: Poland First season: 1927 Number of teams: 16 Relegation to: Fortuna I Liga (yes, our 2nd tier's name is I Liga) Current champions: Legia Warsaw (13th title) Most championships: Górnik Zabrze, Wisła Kraków (14 titles each) Most caps: Łukasz Surma (559, 1996-2017) Top scorer: Ernest Pohl (186, 1954-1967)

How the system works?

There are 16 clubs in the Ekstraklasa. During the course of the season each club plays the others twice, once at their home stadium and once at that of their opponents, for a total of 30 games. From the 2013/2014 season onward after 30th round league splits into "championship group" (top eight teams) and "relegation group" (bottom eight teams). Each team plays seven more games (teams ranked 1–4 and 9–12 play four times at home). The bottom two teams will be relegated to Nice I Liga, while the winner will play in Champions League qualifiers. The 2nd and 3rd placed teams will take part in Europa League qualifiers. The team that finishes 4th can only enter the qualification process of the Europa League if the winner of Polish Cup finishes in the TOP 3.

2017/2018 table

https://preview.redd.it/x98rjoefiud11.png?width=991&format=png&auto=webp&s=1766e7165fd97c37a515b9941e2d3d7a507957f6
Location of teams in 2018/2019 Ekstraklasa
https://preview.redd.it/mklrznciiud11.png?width=448&format=png&auto=webp&s=78f8c21b33aa6ae2a6edd3cf5268d735bf66e8f3

Arka Gdynia

Coach: Zbigniew Smółka Captain: Adam Marciniak Most caps: Zbigniew Bieliński (190, 1974-1981) Top scorer: Tomasz Korynt (41, 1977-1982) Debut: 1974/1975 Biggest achievement: 7th place (1977/1978) Last season: 12th place Nickname(s): The Yellow-Blues, The Herrings Stadium: Gdynia City Stadium (15 139) Gif: https://gfycat.com/IdealSpryAsianwaterbuffalo
Background
Position Points W D L GF GA GD Biggest win Biggest defeat
12 43 11 10 16 46 48 -2 5-0 vs Sandecja 1-5 vs Piast
Arka is currently in their golden age. They won Polish Cup in 2017, were finalists in 2018 and won two consecutive Polish Super Cups in 2017 and 2018. They are typical tournament team, like Wigan or Germany, but their results in league were poor. After return to Ekstraklasa, Arka achieved 13th place (they avoided relegation after Polish hand of God by Rafał Siemaszko and obviously riggged match against their friends from Zagłębie Lubin) and 12th place. Before this season, coach Leszek Ojrzyński got sacked. Yes, coach responsible for the biggest achievements in club history got sacked. This is how Polish football works, you will get used to it. Arka under Ojrzyński was criticised for defensive and aggressive style of play. Team was rather hard to watch (harder than average side in this league). Now with new manager Zbigniew Smółka (known for his work in 2nd tier Stal Mielec) Arka will be more entertaining, but he needs some time to change habits of players. Maybe this time they won't reach Cup final, but possibly will be higher in league table.
Lineup
https://preview.redd.it/msdkttgjjud11.png?width=480&format=png&auto=webp&s=a0bb6144173574819aa232b434cc39b489a47f24
Interesting players
Pavels Steinbors Arka's key player, one of the best goalkeepers in Ekstraklasa.
Tadeusz Socha Really interesting player. In his career he achieved 2nd, 1st and 3rd place in Ekstraklasa (all with Śląsk Wrocław), two Polish Cup silver medals (1 with Śląsk, 1 with Arka), one Polish Cup gold medal (with Arka) and won three Polish Super Cups (1 with Śląsk, 2 with Arka). And he is really average footballer, who never was the best right-back in league and never debuted for Poland NT.
Christian Maghoma He went here from Tottenham. Tottenham reserves of course, but that's still something.
Andriy Bohdanov Played in Dynamo Kyiv and Ukraine NT. Whole one match!
Goran Cvijanović Very good playmaker, joined Arka from Korona Kielce, but would be a starter in stronger side too.
Michał Janota He was invisible for whole career, but finally did well in 2nd tier Stal Mielec. Coach Zbigniew Smółka took him to Arka with himself. This season is his make or break.
Marcus Vinicius Named after Roman consul).
Rafał Siemaszko Aside from his handball goal, he was sensation of 2016/2017 season, when he scored 11 goals for Arka. You may think it is not too much, but he was 30 and spent most of his career in 4th tier, so there is still chance for you.
Fun fact Arka is a hero of the most popular Polish fans' poem: "Arka Gdynia kurwa świnia" which means "Arka Gdynia whore and pig" Despite text, it is not considered as offensive and is usually used in satirical context.

Cracovia

Coach: Michał Probierz Captain: Michał Helik Most caps: Marcin Cabaj (162, 2004-2010) Top scorer: Stanisław Malczyk (68, 1928-1937) Debut: 1928 Biggest achievement: Champions (4 times: 1930, 1932, 1937, 1948) Last season: 9th place Nickname(s): The Stripes Stadium: Marshal Józef Piłsudski Stadium (15 114) Gif: https://gfycat.com/WillingWhisperedBee
Background
Position Points W D L GF GA GD Biggest win Biggest defeat
9 50 13 11 13 51 52 -1 4-0 vs Górnik 1-4 vs Wisła K/ Pogoń
After brilliant 2015/2016 season (4th place and Bartosz Kapustka sold to Leicester for €5m), Cracovia didn't get to the championship group. One year ago club owner Janusz Filipiak employed coach Michał Probierz, who achieved with Jagiellonia Białystok 3rd place in 2014/2015 and 2nd place in 2016/2017. However, last season was really average for them and they reached only 9th place (champions of relegation group). This time club's aspirations are bigger. Probierz is probably the best Polish coach right now, he could make make league stars from ordinary players in his previous team. People have expectations of him, but there is a little problem - he never did well outside Białystok. Now, without their best player in last campaign (Krzysztof Piątek, sold to Genoa for €4,5m), favorite club of Pope John Paul II has to reach at least championship group. Professor Filipiak is known for his nervousness and impatience (kinda like Louis de Funes characters). If Cracovia won't achieve TOP 8, Probierz probably will be in threat of being fired.
Lineup
https://preview.redd.it/gt0nwyiakud11.png?width=480&format=png&auto=webp&s=c33c87aa7e21236caa8f11b18bf581d78cc82825
Interesting players
Michał Helik He scored 8 goals last season. As a centre-back. And not just by head, but by right foot and left foot too!
Miroslav Covilo Former captain, currently in "Kokos's club" (atonement place for disobedient footballers). He tried to extort transfer to Lugano, but Cracovia is not BVB and Covilo is not Dembele.
Damian Dąbrowski Probably the best footballer in Cracovia. Unfortunately, permanently injured.
Szymon Drewniak Once guys from Lech TV asked him about his favorite actress. He chose Nicole Aniston, pornstar.
Marcin Budziński King of bangers returned to his former club after year in Australia. I'm sure one of his goals will be nominated for goal of the season.
Elady/Gerard Oliva Both came from 3rd Spanish League. With CV like that Ekstraklasa is yours. I'm not joking here.
Filip Piszczek He plays in top tier, because people think he is Łukasz's brother.
Adrian Danek First ever goalscorer in history of Copa del Gmina Żabno.
https://preview.redd.it/lrozm7kjkud11.png?width=1470&format=png&auto=webp&s=5da6c3e1c6a846a3006cd6a02f12c556521ad864
Fun fact Michał Probierz is the biggest showman in Polish football - he spoke on press conference in German to protest privileged position of foreign coaches in Ekstraklasa - he gave Henning Berg (former Legia manager) Polish-Norwegian dictionary to protest fact, that foreign managers don't even try to learn basic phrases - he argued with Jagiellonia's hooligans and yelled at them - after being criticised for average resuts in Cracovia, he brought on press conference flowerpot, sowed seed, watered it and ironically said "Nothing grows!" - dialog on press conference after Jagiellonia's loss against Legia in 2015 (0-1 after extra time penalty) Journalist: Are you going to appeal against referee's decisions? Probierz: I'm going to go home and drink fuckin' whisky, cause what more can I do? Two years later in Probierz's farewall match in Jagiellonia, fans made this tifo. Text: "We will drink fuckin' whisky, cause what more can we do?"

Górnik Zabrze

Coach: Marcin Brosz Captain: Szymon Matuszek Most caps: Zygfryd Szołtysik (395, 1962-1978) Top scorer: Włodzimierz Lubański (155, 1963-1975) Debut: 1956 Biggest achievement: Champions (14 times: 1957, 1959, 1961, 1962/1963, 1963/1964, 1964/1965, 1965/1966, 1966/1967, 1970/1971, 1971/1972, 1984/1985, 1985/1986, 1986/1987, 1987/1988) Last season: 4th place Nickname(s): The Miners Stadium: Ernest Pohl Stadium (24 563) Gif: https://streamable.com/9vlse
Background
Position Points W D L GF GA GD Biggest win Biggest defeat
4 60 16 12 9 68 54 +14 4-0 vs Wisła P 0-4 vs Cracovia
Arguably the most interesting experiment in Ekstraklasa. Team consists of young Polish players and only three more experienced foreigners. In 2015/2016 season Górnik full of old, unmotivated footballers got relegated. In I Liga club changed its strategy and returned to Ekstraklasa after one year. Last season Górnik was a true dark horse of the league ending it on the 4th position (and remaining leader after autumn). They had the best attack (68 goals scored), but also third worst defence (54 goals conceded) in the league. Team was sepacialised in set pieces and counter-attacks. Górnik had the smallest ball posession in Ekstraklasa (45%), however they took the most shots on a game (14,1). There is no Barca DNA in this team, but it is still entertaining to watch. Club owes its rebirth to coach Marcin Brosz, who has very successful career overall. All looks great, but there is one thing you should know - Górnik have mostly young boys in squad not because they want, but because they have to. They are just poor and kids are cheaper. Also, this season will be more difficult for them. Wingers Kurzawa and Kądzior leaved club, centre-back Wieteska returned to Legia from loan. Yesterday Górnik lost 1-4 against Trencin in EL Qualifiers.
Lineup
https://preview.redd.it/gj69irfbmud11.png?width=480&format=png&auto=webp&s=3300ae5233cc2704718b09e6e44d308e13a497da
Interesting players
Wojciech Pawłowski Former goalkeeper of Udinese, known mostly for his legendary interview in "English". Really worth watching.
Szymon Matuszek He is neither young nor Spanish, but plays in Górnik. Phenomenon.
Szymon Żurkowski Polish Koke, discovery of the last season, named to UEFA 50 for the future. From all players to watch in Ekstraklasa, he is the most worth watching.
Konrad Nowak He played in Rozwój Katowice with Arkadiusz Milik and was widely considered as more talented, but injuries almost destroyed his career. Now, he is finally healthy.
Igor Angulo One of Górnik's key players last season. He scored 23 goals and even Athletic Bilbao was interested in him during winter break (Angulo is native Basque and debuted for them in La Liga).
Fun fact 79 years old Stanisław Sętkowski since eighties appears on every Górnik match with characteristic bell. After home matches he often gives best Górnik player rooster or turkey.

Jagiellonia Białystok

Coach: Ireneusz Mamrot Captain: Rafał Grzyb Most caps: Rafał Grzyb (238, 2010-) Top scorer: Tomasz Frankowski (53, 1992-1993, 2009-2013) Debut: 1987/1988 Biggest achievement: Runners-up (2 times: 2016/2017, 2017/2018) Last season: Runners-up Nickname(s): Jaga Stadium: Białystok City Stadium (22 372) Gif: https://gfycat.com/TerribleSlushyGalapagosmockingbird
Background
Pos Points W D L GF GA GD Biggest win Biggest defeat
2 67 20 7 10 55 41 +14 5-1 vs Korona 1-5 vs Lech
Jagiellonia is a really specific club, In last four seasons they achieved TOP 3 three times, but most people still don't consider them as one of favorites. Until 2010s team was average, but later, thanks to coach Michał Probierz and wise transfer policy, they became one of the best teams in Poland. Two silver medals in two recent seasons are their biggest success. Now, they are covertly thinking about winning league. Before 2016/2017 nobody thought they will fight for championship to the last matchday., but surprisingly they did. After that Jaga's best player Konstantin Vassiljev ("Emperor of Estonia", 13 goals and 13 assists) returned to his previous club Piast Gliwice. He was 33 and wanted to extend his contract for another 3 years, but chairman Cezary Kulesza wisely refused. Coach Probierz was replaced by Ireneusz Mamrot, who never worked in a top tier club. Unexpectedly, Jagiellonia repeated their result and gained 2nd place again. After 2-0 win in Warsaw against Legia Przegląd Sportowy made this memorable cover. Club is poorer than Lech and Legia, but on similar sport level. Yesterday Jagiellonia drew 4-4 against Rio Ave and eliminated them from EL Qualifiers. They will face Gent in the next round.
Lineup
https://preview.redd.it/mb6clvgqmud11.png?width=480&format=png&auto=webp&s=a47627c071ed74afe49f55204a23882c2322efc7
Interesting players
Marian Kelemen/Bodvar Bodvarsson Both are kinda special. Kelemen is the oldest footballer of the league, the only one born in seventies. Bodvarsson has the honor of being first ever Icelandic player in history of Ekstraklasa.
Taras Romanczuk In form, he is probably the best DM in whole league. Ukrainian with Polish descent and citizenship, debuted for Poland NT in March, but wasn't called up for World Cup. Good for him.
Piotr Wlazło Great example of footballer of one goal. When I hear about him, I always think about this.
Przemysław Frankowski Relatively young, fast winger. Debuted for Poland in March. Player to watch.
Arvydas Novikovas Jagiellonia's key player, one of the best midfielders in Ekstraklasa. Also, brutally fouled by He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named.
Dejan Lazarević/Roman Bezjak Both came to Polish league from big European clubs - Lazarević from ChievoVerona, Bezjak from Darmstadt. And both are surprisingly average. This is Ekstraklasa - better player on paper, worse signing in practice.
Cillian Sheridan Similarly to Bodvarsson, Sheridan is the first representative of his country in the best league in the world. Also, very likeable guy.
Fun fact Jagiellonia's training facility is ironically called "Jaganello", in honor of Milan's Milanello.

Korona Kielce

Coach: Gino Lettieri Captain: Bartosz Rymaniak Most caps: Paweł Sobolewski (177, 2007-2016) Top scorer: Jacek Kiełb (38, 2006-2010, 2011-2012, 2013-2015, 2016-2018) Debut: 2005/2006 Biggest achievement: 5th place (3 times: 2005/2006, 2011/2012, 2016/2017) Last season: 8th place Nickname(s): The Buck Knives, The Golden-Blooded Stadium: Kielce City Stadium (15 500) Gif: https://streamable.com/surmt
Background
Pos Points W D L GF GA GD Biggest win Biggest defeat
8 49 12 13 12 49 54 -5 5-0 vs Lechia 1-5 vs Białystok
Korona and making pundits look like idiots, name a more iconic duo. Eternal candidate to relegation, always the worst team of the league (according to journalists of course). From 2008 to 2017 club belonged to the city, but later was finally bought by German businessman and former international goalkeeper Dieter Burdenski. He controversially sacked Maciej Bartoszek, who reached with team 5th place (obviously they were main candidate to relegation before season). Burdenski employed Gino Lettieri - former manager of clubs from 2 and 3 Bundesliga. He was strongly criticised by media, which tried to discredit him in any possible way. Criticism bacame even stronger, when Fabian Burdenski (son of club owner) and other players from German 2nd, 3rd and 4th league joined club. Korona as always easily avoided relegation and reached Polish Cup semifinal. Best players of club traditionally leaved it, but replacement will arrive soon. This year pundits predict relegation again, and Korona will probably avoid it again. They went through similar phases in 2017, and 2016, and 2015, and 2014, and 2013, and 2012, and that weird one in 2011.
Lineup
https://preview.redd.it/cwptym4unud11.png?width=480&format=png&auto=webp&s=48308318668213dce647361c88f3493ece267f7b
Interesting players
Paweł Sokół Young goalkeeper from Manchester City academy. Kinda sad, that they let him leave.
Bartosz Rymaniak Shitty in Zagłębie Lubin. Shitty in Cracovia. Combination of Cafu, Thuram, Lahm and Carlos Alberto in Korona. This transformation is just unexplainable.
Adnan Kovacević/Ivan Jukić Both are Bosnians, both are fairly young, and both are key players - first in defense, second in offense.
Piotr Malarczyk Very rare photo of Piotr Malarczyk and his English fan.
Jakub Żubrowski/Mateusz Możdżeń Żubrowski (nickname "Alonso") and Możdżeń (who scored goal against Manchester City), form a couple of central midfielders, which is probably Korona's strongest spot. In Poland, talking about Możdżeń and not mentioning his goal against Manchester City is considered as heresy.
Felicio Brown Forbes If you think that Kevin Großkreutz is versatile, you probably never heard of him. Don't believe Transfermarkt, he can be used almost everywhere.
Vato Arveladze/Elia Soriano Vato is son of legendary Georgian striker Shota Arveladze. Elia is brother of Villareal's midfielder, Roberto Soriano. At least that connects us with serious football.
Maciej Górski Imagine the worst striker you only can. Górski is two times worse. His finishing is a meme, even by Ekstraklasa stadards.
Fun fact Former Korona coach Marek Motyka invented his own way of taking corner kicks. It is popularly called "szarańcza" ("locust") and looks like that. Or like that.

Lech Poznań

Coach: Ivan Durdević Captain: Rotational Most caps: Hieronim Barczak (367, 1972-1987) Top scorer: Teodor Anioła (139, 1948-1961) Debut: 1948 Biggest achievement: Champions (7 times: 1982/1983, 1983/1984, 1989/1990, 1991/1992, 1992/1993, 2009/2010, 2014/2015) Last season: 3rd place Nickname(s): The Railwayman, The Lechitas Stadium: Poznań City Stadium (41 609) Gif: https://gfycat.com/UntimelyHelplessArrowcrab
Background
Pos Points W D L GF GA GD Biggest win Biggest defeat
3 60 16 12 9 53 34 +19 5-1 vs Białystok/Piast 0-3 vs Legia
"Again second. Always second, for my whole life. Even when sometimes I was first, I felt like I was fuckin' second.". This quote from Polish cult black comedy "Nothing funny" perfectly summarise Lech. For last few years years club became second football powerhouse in Poland after Legia. Two recent season, when they gained only 3rd places didn't change it - usually they are still considered better than Jagiellonia. During last matchday of the last season Lech was losing 0-2 against Legia. Then hooligans began throwing stuff on the pitch. This match was the last straw. After all these years, Lech fans were too frustrated to stay calm. Their biggest accusations were: - lack of commitment and winning mentality - losing the most important matches - avarice of club owners (what a coincidence...) And there are serious presumptions that this season will be better: - chairman Klimczak employed club legend Ivan Djurdjević (known for his determination and competitive spirit) as a coach - Lech won their two first matches in Ekstraklasa (unusual for them) and eliminated Shakhtyor Soligorsk from EL Qualifiers, so beginning is promising - club bought Pedro Tiba from Chaves for €1m and Joao Amaral from Vitoria Setubal for €1,5m There is one thing wherein Lech is definitely the best club in Poland - producing talented young players. Bednarek, Linetty, Kownacki, Kamiński and Kędziora are some of examples. Robert Lewandowski also played for Lech before his transfer to BVB.
Lineup
https://preview.redd.it/rq4rjl74pud11.png?width=480&format=png&auto=webp&s=a55dbbd2a17686f22fadbfc9c1cc545177694b9c
Interesting players
Robert Gumny/Kamil Jóźwiak/Tymoteusz Klupś Three young players to watch. They will leave our lovely league sooner or later.
Łukasz "Don't hit this bus you fuckin' dickhead" Trałka Currently he is good DM and even started scoring goals, but in past was synonym of laziness and lack of engagement. In his honor, people created new noun - "trałkowanie". Yes, Trałka is this lying guy.
Tomasz Cywka Real mystery. He spent almost whole career in English Championship (definitely better league than Ekstraklasa). He played regularly, had goals, assists, some people wanted him in National Team. Later he returned to Poland and did nothing.
Pedro Tiba/Joao Amaral New signings from Portuguese league. Both have potential to be the best player of this league, especially Tiba, who was named to Liga NOS team of the season. On paper comparing Tiba to Carlitos would be insulting for Tiba, but there is too early to make opinions.
Darko Jevtić/Maciej Makuszewski Two key players of Lech. Jevtić is technically gifted playmaker, who can also play on other positions. Makuszewski is another footballer who wasn't called up for World Cup, because He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named is more important.
Christian Gytkjaer I have a strange hobby, you wouldn't understand...
Fun fact Lech did both the most expensive transfer to Ekstraklasa (Joao Amaral from Vitoria Setubal, €1,5m) and the most expensive transfer from Ekstraklasa (Jan Bednarek to Southampton, €6m).

Lechia Gdańsk

Coach: Piotr Stokowiec Captain: Flavio Paixao Most caps: Roman Korynt (207, 1953-1967) Top scorer: Bogdan Adamczyk (36, 1955-1963) Debut: 1949 Biggest achievement: 3rd place (1956) Last season: 13th place Nickname(s): The Lechistas Stadium: Stadium Energa Gdańsk (41 620) Gif: https://gfycat.com/antiquedelayedasianconstablebutterfly
Background
Pos Points W D L GF GA GD Biggest win Biggest defeat
13 39 9 13 15 46 58 -12 3-0 vs Wisła P 0-5 vs Korona
Between 2013 and 2017 Lechia were serious candidate to win Ekstraklasa. However, they transfer policy was, to put it mildly, wasn't sensible. Paixao brothers, Mila, Kuświk, Krasić, He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named, Wojtkowiak, Wawrzyniak - at one point they all played in starting eleven. And all of them were over 30. Lechia was the biggest flop of last season ending it at 13th position and barely avoiding relegetion. They made disastrous transfers, especially in defence and started fight for championship (kek) with ridiculous centre-backs and average age comparable to AC Milan in their peak. This time, transfer window was calmer for them. Mean age declined, new players are mostly young Poles, some pensioners leaved club. Indonesian talent Egy Maulana Vikri is also theoretically available to play. His transfer was very... noticeable in club's social media. Team's coach is Piotr "Red" Stokowiec, who got promoted to Ekstraklasa with Zagłębie Lubin and reached with this team 3rd place next season. Championship group is Lechia's realistic aim. They had chances to fight for championship, but didn't reach even TOP 3.
Lineup
https://preview.redd.it/hk2gi2uequd11.png?width=480&format=png&auto=webp&s=0ae2e75079f5ece861b0f6d21e4780ebf85c0ed4
Interesting players
Zlatan Alomerović Former Borussia Dortmund third goalkeeper and probably the best penalty saver in league. Once Lewandowski, Reus and Gotze, now Arak, Lipski and Łukasik.
Błażej Augustyn/Steven Vitoria/Joao Nunes Lechia's defenders. Seems like title of Monty Python's sketch. Vitoria is remembered mostly from clapping during Wisła Kraków's action. Nunes was a summary of his club's style of play. But no one was worse than Błażej "Simeone is a poor coach" Augustyn, who (what a surprise) also returned to Poland after years.
Milos Krasić He was very good between 2015 and 2017, but since last season became unproductive (like most of players in this team). If you want to see ex-Juventus and Serbia star in action again... You probably won't.
Rafał Wolski Wasted talent. He was called up for EURO 2012 at the age of 20 and joined Fiorentina one year later. After a few loans, he returned to Ekstraklasa in 2016. Currently injured, but he is Lechia's key player and will appear in starting eleven soon.
Egy Maulana Vikri Player to watch, but honestly I have no expactations about him. He has very good technique, but is just too little to play yet. He should go to the gym and maybe will show something.
He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named I will deliberately ignore him. Also, his backstory is too long. He deserves a separate post.
Flavio Paixao Marco's twin brother and another key player. Nominal winger, but this time, he will play as a centre-forward.
Fun fact Lechia is the most popular Polish team. They have about 0,5 milion fans from Poland and over 260 milion fans from Indonesia.

Legia Warsaw

Coach: Aleksandar Vuković (interim) Captain: Miroslav Radović Most caps: Lucjan Brychczy (386, 1954-1972) Top scorer: Lucjan Brychczy (182, 1954-1972) Debut: 1927 Biggest achievement: Champions (13 times: 1955, 1956, 1968/1969, 1969/1970, 1993/1994, 1994/1995, 2001/2002, 2005/2006, 2012/2013, 2013/2014, 2015/2016, 2016/2017, 2017/2018) Last season: Champions Nickname(s): The Legionaries, The Militaries Stadium: Polish Army Stadium (31 103) Gif: https://giant.gfycat.com/PlaintiveMadeupEgret.webm
Background
Pos Points W D L GF GA GD Biggest win Biggest defeat
1 70 22 4 11 55 35 +20 4-1 vs Śląsk 0-3 vs Lech
Since 2012/2013 season Legia won Ekstraklasa five times and qualified to Champions League in 2016/2017. They are objectively the best team in Poland, but always have some issues and usually aren't first before last matchdays. Legia won last three seasons of league by difference of two or three points. Last campaign of team was acutely strange. Coach Jacek Magiera, who helped Legia to reach championship and being not last in CL group, got sacked (Legia lost against Astana in CL Qualifiers and Sheriff Tiraspol in EL Qualifiers). He was replaced by Romeo Jozak - former sports director of Dinamo Zagreb. It was his debut as a head manager. Legie under him was very boring and hard to watch. After 0-3 loss against Lech, players were beaten by own fans. It didn't t help. Jozak got fired in April and was replaced by his own assistant, Dean Klafurić. Surprisingly Legia started winning games and... won both Polish Cup and Ekstraklasa. Klafurić was supposed to be interim coach, but chairman Miodulski gave him a chance, which obviously he missed losing to Spartak Trnava. New manager will be announced soon. Legia bought MVP of last season, Carlitos from Wisła Kraków.
Lineup
https://preview.redd.it/mw3rahfjrud11.png?width=480&format=png&auto=webp&s=c7a4ccca04b951179144fd41c9b798c94648d508
Or
https://preview.redd.it/fmsr66ukrud11.png?width=480&format=png&auto=webp&s=ce690653809126e3a2fe76944292afcf67049578
Interesting players
Arkadiusz Malarz Best goalkeeper of the last season. Liked by Legia fans, cause he looks like he is as pissed off at team as they are.
Mateusz Wieteska Young centre-back, better in offense than in defense. Last season he was loaned to Górnik Zabrze and scored 7 goals, but his defending abilities are... not that good.
Michał Pazdan Cultural phenomenon and national hero after EURO 2016. In Poland, average casual fans who don't watch anything except NT would rather recognize him than players like Glik or Krychowiak. He was second most popular Polish footballer after Lewandowski, there was even song about him (and here is text in English). Also, Ronaldo never scored a goal against team with Pazdan in squad (three attempts).
Artur Jędrzejczyk/Krzysztof Mączyński Both represented Poland on EURO 2016. Together with some other players they formed a group called "fusy" (dregs), which consisted of less popular representatives. Jędrzejczyk is currently the highest paid footballer in whole league. Mączyński came to Legia from one of their rival teams, Wisła Kraków. His old tweets "I will never join Legia" are easy to find.
Domagoj Antolić Allow me to start by recalling Croatia NT squad from match against Hungary, just two years ago. Kalinić – Vida, Corluka, Schildenfeld, Vrsaljko – Brozović, Antolić – Kovacić, Modrić, Perisić – Mandzukić And now, because you already have some experience, think - is he a star in this league? You must figure it out on your own. But the answer is no.
Kaspar Hamalainen I will just quote excerpt of older post by u/kacperp: "Probably most hated player by Lech Poznań fans in recent history. He was definitely their best player for couple seasons that he spend in Poznań, but he didn't want to renew his contract and said he'd like to go abroad. But he didn't. He went to Legia for free becoming one of the best paid players in Polish league. He is not very good for Legia but he scored few goals - two of them against Lech. Both this season. Both in 93rd minute of the game. Both winning goals."
Sebastian Szymański Young player to watch, this season finally will be a starter. Also wasn't called up for World Cup due to He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named.
Michał Kucharczyk If anyone ask you "What is surrealism?", just show him this photo. Kuchy King. Living legend. The ekstraklasest footballer you can imagine. Player meme, but if I have to talk about him seriously - he is underrated. He is the example, that you don't need serious skills to play here, your engagement and running are enough. Some of Legia fans disrespect him, but he usually scores the most important goals and club wouldn't be so successful without him. Also, I'd prefer Kucharczyk than He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named.
Eduardo da Silva Former player of Arsenal and Shakhtar Donetsk. Second best goalscorer in history of Croatia NT after Davor Suker. It never seemed to work.
Carlitos I was only seven years old. I loved Legia so much, I was wathing all matches and had all posters. I pray to Legia every night before I go to bed, thanking for the life I've been given. "Legia is love", I would say, "Legia is life". My dad hears me and calls me a faggot. I knew he was just jealous for my devotion of Legia. I called him a cunt. He slaps me and sends me to go to sleep. I'm crying now and my face hurts. I lay in bed and it's really cold. A warmth is moving towards me. I feel something touch me. It's Lucjan Brychczy. I'm so happy. He whispers in my ear, "I want to show you something". He grabs me with his powerful hands, and takes me to Warsaw. We are on stadium now. I see how my team is losing 2-3 against Widzew. It hurts so much, but I do it for Legia. I can feel my eyes start to water. I want to please Legionaries. Finally we return to my room. My dad walks in. Brychczy looks him straight in the eye, and says, "Carlos will play for Legia one day.". He leaves through my window. Legia is love. Legia is life.
Fun fact Miroslav Radović scored 2 goals against Real Madrid and Cristiano Ronaldo scored 0 goals against Legia. Draw your own conclusions.
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