May 29 2011

SK SFM Senec v 1. FC Petrzalka

Published by at 11:23 am under Domestic and tagged: ,

I must admit I was exceptionally disappointed to learn that the final day fixtures for the Corgon Liga moved forward from the weekend to the previous Wednesday.  This meant I missed out on an away day to the family’s home town of Dunajska Streda with Slovan and faced the prospect of a football-free weekend.  However a quick scan of the fixtures in the morning papers soon created an opportunity.  Division 2 West had nothing in the vicinity of Bratislava, but there it was;  Division 1 17:00 Senec v Petrzalka, perfect.  A quick sms to Stary Jazvec and we were in business, Senec away here we come.

We took the train from Bratislava at 16:37 and avoided the triathlon participants to scoot around the Senec lake and into the ground having just missed 7 minutes of the ‘action’.  As we were to soon find out, this wasn’t about the football.  A typical end-of-season dead rubber on a blustery, wet day.  347 people turned up.  While circumnavigating the lake however, it was clear that some people in the ground were there to make some noise.  You could even go as far as to call it co-ordinating singing.  We gambled on between 30-50 away fans, because we knew that the noise certainly wasn’t coming from the locals.  We probably weren’t far off the mark with that estimate, although Petrzalka’s support probably totalled nearer 100, all in.

At one point in their turbulent recent past, Petrzalka actually played home-games here in Senec.  Something to do with the degradation of Stary Most and the fact it had no floodlights meant that this was a normal home-trip for the Petrzalka die-hards.  Crowds were probably no better then than today and that was while they were competing at the top of the Corgon Liga.

The Senec complex is actually the SFZ National Football Centre, with facilities of the quality you don’t normally find in football grounds in this country.  €2,50 entrance, €1 a beer, no complaints there and on entry we were amused to find the Petrzalka contingent in the main stand.

This small group of Petrzalka ‘ultras’ seems to be gaining in numbers and strength with their banners hung proudly over the railings they created quite a noise.  Alchol-influenced and slightly un-cordinated, the ring-leader with the wig and the mega-phone was trying his best.  The away fans even managed to create a temporary suspension of on-the-field proceedings when the covered the pitch with till rolls.  A slightly unnecessary action, I must admit, and it wasn’t long before the Senec ‘heavies’ were out to get things under control.  All very amusing!

chaos in the away end

My attention was certainly drawn to the Petrzalka number 16 during this first half, Agustin looks an accomplished footballer and was head-and-shoulders above the rest today.  Another one for Slovan?  Maybe, but it’s a pity that this is the kind of conversation we have when watching Petrzalka these days.

The Senec ground is a lovely place to watch football, but where isn’t on a summer day in Slovakia?!  The main stand is superb, facilities in terms of catering and toilets probably take some beating throughout the whole country and there isn’t a sniff of animosity or trouble here.  I got reprimanded for saying that Senec have no fans, of course there are a few loyal locals, but with around 100 away fans in a crowd of 347, do the maths.

It’s not big, but with a capacity of around 4,000 and stands close to the pitch, this is the kind of ground where we should be watching football, forget athletics tracks and awful facilities.  I’m not saying Slovan should play here in Senec, but the longer their own ground situation is not resolved, the more you can’t help thinking something like this would be much more appropriate.   As with a lot of the grounds here, I would love to come when it was full, maybe for a big cup tie one day.  Credit to the SFZ and Senec, this is a good set-up.  It can be done.

SK SFM Senec. Decent.

During half-time the Petrzalka contingent migrated to the other side of the ground which created a new vantage point for us behind the goal.  There is a fenced-off ‘Sektor Hosti’ in this ground but it wasn’t in use today.  Considering any team bringing a decent contingent of away fans here are going to outnumber the home fans it is reasonable to question the function of this section of the ground.  Spartak Trnava visiting in the cup?  Can’t see that fence helping much.

Sektor hosti? Pointless!

Anyway, the football in the 2nd half was dire, so the conversation turned towards Petrzalka and their identity, once again, as it always seems to do.  The ultras group are all for singing the German name ‘Engerau’, I was especially amused by the ‘Engerau Sampion’ song which is one of the favourites.  But why?  It is hard to fathom why the fans sing the German name of Petrzalka when the origin of the club is very much Hungarian.  13 name changes and counting, the identity of the club and it’s fans will remain a subject for discussion.  The fans are certainly loyal though and banners in tribute to the outgoing coach and thanking the players for an excellent season certainly show that there are no especially hard feelings about the current situation.  I suppose there is a kind of resigned acceptance and contentment that the club still exists and still plays in black & white.  It is hard not to feel a certain affection and sympathy with the team, especially on a day like today.

Loyal Petrzalka

In order to catch the train back we had to leave slightly early, but it was no great surprise to confirm the 0-0 scoreline later that evening.  Petrzalka played some decent football at times, they have plenty of players with a good touch, but once again, as we always seem to end up saying, the lack of a decent striker on show today was blatantly obvious.  So it’s 3rd place for Petrzalka, 21 points behind Champions Trencin and 3 behind surprise 2nd place finishers Rimavska Sobota.  Earlier in the season we were making a case that Petrzalka will probably have to wait a season for their return to the top league due to the strength of Trencin, but based on recent performances, you can’t help feeling it might be slightly more than just a season…

4 responses so far




4 Responses to “SK SFM Senec v 1. FC Petrzalka”

  1.   James Baxteron 29 May 2011 at 1:06 pm

    Nice one. Sounds like fun! I seem to have been watching end-of-season games like this since Za lost to Senica.

    The ground looks like a decent set-up, perfect for a smaller club, certainly.

    I’d heard Goffa was leaving but missed out on the details. Is it connected with the financial situation? Given what’s gone on, I’d say he’s done a decent job. But how many more ways are there of saying a team plays good football but lacks a striker? Wasn’t quite true of Petrzalka when Szarka was still there though, was it?

    In answer to an earlier question, Trencin to finish 6th-8th next season?

  2.   Stary Jazvecon 29 May 2011 at 10:55 pm

    Forza Pozsonyi Torna Egyesület!

    Down with “Engerau” and “Pressburg” type bullsh*t and Slovak ultras deciding they want to have a German name and chant in German becos they think they are hard and the Nazis were hard.

    Ranting aside, I enjoyed a most civilized away day to Senec with an itinerant Slovanista. The football didnt quite reach the heights of the 9-goal thriller I saw here in May ’08, or the last minute Champ League qualifier heroics of 2005 v Kairat Almaty, but the beer is cheap.

    Roll on Dubnica away or maybe Spartak Myjava…

  3.   Estojaon 06 Jun 2011 at 5:57 pm

    Yes, what is with the German names in the fan groups of Petrzalka and Slovan?
    I knew about Petrzalka fans but I didn’t know about Slovan fans and I saw it the other day when I went to Pasienky.

    Anyway, looks like a nice trip to Senec. Ground looks very nice.

  4.   James Baxteron 09 Jun 2011 at 12:07 pm

    The answer seems to be in Jazvec’s post. I can’t think of anything other than silly would-be fascist posturing. As for Slovan, they’ve long had that element in their support. Their very foundation was basically a nationalist statement. When I first came to Sk, their fans all seemed to be skinheads wearing Nazi symbols. I reckon no sane person coming to live in Ba at that time would have chosen them as their club, which partly explains the hostility towards them you might have read on here before. Having said that, I largely agree with Dan that their fans are getting more civilised now (my visit to Pasienky back in April confirmed what he says) but it’s no surprise that a hard-core continue to resist that trend and I still wouldn’t want to mix with their ultras.

    With Petrzalka, the Engerau kids appear to be a new element which, in a way, makes them all the more depressing.

    Zilina too have their share of racists. In fact, I read an interesting discussion not long ago on the WSC message-board where the conclusion was that pretty much all central/eastern European ultras groups are basically right-wing and racist. It’s hard to disagree with that really.

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