Having laid out the groundrules in part one, without further ado rightbankwarsaw moves onto part two – focusing on four more Ekstraklasa clubs and their English equivalents.
4) Śląśk Wrocław = West Ham United
It wasn’t easy to find an English equivalent to Śląsk Wrocław, but the best I could do was West Ham United. Both clubs are of medium to large sizes, with fervent supporters, both have won a number of honours over the years but have also spent periods outside of their respective top divisions. Both clubs look back to heydays in the relatively distant past where exciting players played important roles in their national teams. In addition both clubs have received new stadiums due to major international sporting events, Śląsk for Euro 2012 and West Ham due to the London Summer Olympics of the same year.
Władysław Żmuda, The Bobby Moore of Śląsk Wrocław
5) Wisłá Kraków = Newcastle United
Some might say that comparing Wisła Kraków to Newcastle is nonsensical, especially considering the sheer dominance of Wisła in Polish football in the noughties, something that Newcastle were never able to achieve in England. However if you look more closely the similarities become more obvious, both clubs have large fanbases and big cathedral-like stadiums and both clubs main rivals play in white and red (Wisła – Cracovia, Newcastle – Sunderland). But perhaps the biggest similarity between the clubs currently is their lack of direction – due to poor ownership, both Wisła and Newcastle fans seem to think their club will soon drift into obscurity.
Reymonta 22, or is it St. James’ Park?
6) Górnik Zabrze = Aston Villa
Górnik Zabrze have a lot in common with Aston Villa. Both clubs come from industrial areas, both have good levels of support and both were very successful in domestic and European football in the relatively distant past and are doing very little these days. In fact you could say that both Górnik and Villa need some sort of catastrophic event to shake themselves out of their lethargy, although the worry is that if Górnik do eventually fall out of the Ekstraklasa, they may never find their way back.
Górnik Zabrze, like Aston Villa, in a European final, something that won’t happen again in a hurry
7) Podbeskidzie Bielsko Biała = Hull City
The similarities between Podbeskidzie (PBB for short) and Hull City are relatively obvious. Both sides didn’t make it to the top flight in their respective countries until the last ten years (PBB in 2010, Hull in 2007), both clubs are unfashionable but seem slowly to be cementing their place among the elite. The two sides are also ignored by the main stream media – if there was a Polish version of Match of the Day, you can assume that PBB would be the last match on almost every week. Despite this both clubs’ long term prospects seem more bright than other clubs with larger fan bases.
Podbeskidzie Bielsko Biała – somehow in the elite
That’s all for now folks, but keep your eyes peeled for the continuation of this rather ill-judged series of blog posts