Oct 25 2011

EFW Oktoberfest 2011

Published by at 7:12 pm under Czech Republic and tagged:

In what is becoming an annual celebration of football, travel, drinking and good banter, the 3rd annual European Football Weekends Oktoberfest took place last weekend based in the Czech Republic.

Slovan Bratislava hosting Paris St Germain tagged an extra match and an extra city onto the itinerary for the guys.  We’ve discussed the match on the previous article, so for those wanting to read about the EFW-ers (mixed) experience at Pasienky, here are the links:


After a heavy night on the Pilsner Urquell (no Zlaty Bazant I’m afraid), EFW were, impressively, present and correct, almost to a man, on the 08:09 departure for Prague.  We were on the 10:09, via Breclav.  Which was subject to a 10 minute delay.  Would they hold the connection or would we be searching the Moravian-Silesian Fixture list for a MSK Břeclav home match?  They held the connection.

On arrival in Prague, the first impression (obviously) was of the train station.  Impressively renovated since my last visit, this was a station who’s concourse rivalled any in Europe.  Sephora perfume shops where Bratislava has the odd kiosk.  Then again, probably a similar comparison can be made between Eden Stadium and Pasienky.  We’re a hell of a long way behind still.

Straight onto the metro, and out at the Botel Florentina. Right in the centre of Prague.  Quite ironic, I found, to have a hotel with such a beautiful setting, given the nature of our weekend.  After a quick meet-and-greet, it was all-aboard the EFW Bingo Bus to Liberec.  After a painfully slow ride out of town, before we knew it we had stocked up on beer and were rolling North.

EFW Team Bus.

Liberec was much nicer than expected.  A city the locals seem to love.  Rather like Brno, it must be said.  I rarely get that impression in Slovakia, that the locals really love their city.

Here is Andy Hudson’s Liberec write-up:


At Liberec, I was especially amused by the ‘Death Boys Slovan’ hoodies, and the ‘Alcohol Football’ emblem all over the ultras section.  I found it quite a friendly place to be honest, although Petrzalka fans posing for photos are obviously not welcome around here.  Banik Ostrava brought  a few fans along, obviously not happy with the Friday kick-off and there was a decent atmosphere for a very entertaining match.  3-2 to Liberec with a last minute winner.

Petrzalka? Out!

Two Slovans in two nights?  Tick!  EFW were happy, and the trip home, along with plenty of beers, souvenirs and a good-old sing-song was a lot of fun.  The rest of the night in Prague was somewhat hazy, it must be said.

We’d only got the one night in town, so there was no choice but to make the effort for a 09:30 rise for the Saturday morning fixture.  It was hard work, but we got out to Praha 9 in a taxi.  Only to find most of the Oktoberfest contingent had made it by public transport.  Hats. Off.

Saturday morning was what I had been looking forward to most.  Sparta Praha B v Zbrojovka Brno.  Brno fans regularly show up to support Slovan Bratislava, so it was the least I could do to return the favour.  Only the Brno fans were boycotting.  A ridiculously over-the-top police presence was ready for them, but soon rolled away.  Maybe it wasn’t so over-the-top after what happened at Znojmo a couple of weeks ago.

Sparta B v Brno

This was a great match, one I wrote up for the EFW site:


From one remote suburb to another; on the other side of town.  Via bus, metro, bus, an Armenian restaurant for some borsch and a bloody long walk we arrived.  At a field.  Somewhere in Prague, for the 15:00 kick-off.  No-one really knew who was playing, we understand it was Division 9, some people weren’t impressed and left.  But it was fun.  A kick-around while the players took their half-time break probably made it, that, the 18-stone centre forward and the ref with sunglasses.  Those who went to town instead probably made a good call, but this was the end of the fun for me.  As for the Oktoberfest, that was still rolling onto Zizkov, Dukla and Admira, not to mention Plzen.  Hardcore dedication which certainly brings it’s rewards!

I made it back for the 18:13 to Bratislava where we enjoyed a beer from a “Verim Plzen” can.  Hard to believe they’ll be playing Barcelona in Prague next week.  After plotting our own Eastern Slovakian Football Weekend and some discussion of internet trolls, we were through Brno, and soon back in Bratislava.  Where we managed not to fall down some dark crumbling steps coming out of the station.

There are many things about the Oktoberfest that appeal to me, and that sums up what makes it so special.  EFW successfully bring together people of all backgrounds who share a basic common ground of travel, football and beer, but it gets so much more specific than that.  Some are genuine groundhoppers, some are writers, bloggers, photographers, others just love their football.  Barnet, Sheffield United, Legia Warsaw, Tranmere Rovers, Royal Antwerp, FC Petrzalka, it doesn’t matter, everyone comes together and has a damn good time.

..it may only be a field, but you can still get a beer!

Many thanks to Danny, Stoffers and Stu for their organisation.  I think I can speak for the whole Bratislava contingent when I say we really enjoyed our taste of the Oktoberfest.

An unexpected end to my footballing weekend, as part of the family Sunday in Okoc, an hour East of Bratislava, the men asked me if I wanted to go to the football.  Oh, go on then, if you insist.  ”It’s only 5th Division, they warned”, after the previous day, it couldn’t be any worse, but that’s the beauty of it!  Okoc / Sokolec (Ekezs) are bottom of Division 5 West South in Slovakia.  Bottom of the bottom of the pyramid.  Which is why they didn’t get relegated after finishing bottom last season.  They lost 0-2 to second bottom Vlcany and are now, already 5 points adrift.  Vlcany’s second goal, it must be said, was an absolute screamer from 25 yards into the top corner.

Slovak Div 5 to finish off the weekend? Go on then!

I really enjoy village football in Slovakia.  Everyone knows everyone, the bar is always open and you can tell it’s the highlight of the week.  Around 200 people there, I’d say, which compared to some recent Corgon Liga attendances, isn’t half bad.  If any EFW groundhoppers ever make it here, I’ll be very impressed indeed!

5 responses so far

5 Responses to “EFW Oktoberfest 2011”

  1.   Carp boyon 26 Oct 2011 at 2:47 pm

    “Sephora perfume shops”? Do they sell stuff to make you smell nice when you’re sipping fizzy water?

  2.   StaryJazvecon 26 Oct 2011 at 2:53 pm

    Death Boys Petrzalka denied a photo-op. If I ever meet steward No. 43 I shall screw up my face menacingly, the over-officious bumpkin.

  3.   George Mon 27 Oct 2011 at 2:39 pm

    I am a little confused …what do you actually DO for fun on this EFW weekend ?

    Where are the tarts, the strippers the lap dancers ?

  4.   Stofferson 28 Oct 2011 at 10:22 pm

    Re. Saturday afternoon: No one really knew who was playing!?

    It was the mighty SK Kotva Vršovice 1895 thrashing Čechie Smíchov B 6-0!

    Well, and we missed 4 goals by leaving 5 minutes early… doh!
    More on here: http://www.skkotva.cz/

  5. [...] celebration of football, travel, drinking and good banter, czyli ponownie Dan (Anglia) i jego spojrzenie na III edycję [...]

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