Football ?90

An interesting phenomenon was that of the apparition, actually that of the reinvention of the football supporters. They adopted an attitude different to that before 1989. In a certain way, they sort of turned professional, taking from the occidental models. Good and bad things together. The good things resided in building that supporters? corps (juridical persons). But they also borrowed some extremist habits. It is interesting to see how they adopted all this behaviour. The visual animation, the banners, the sound and light shows, an equipment called style. If you remember, the slogans that could be heard during the Revolution were actually borrowed from the stadiums. ?Ole, ole, ole, Ceauşescu is gone, mates!? is a slogan coming from the stadiums. Many of the songs sang during that time were actually rooted in the sports. Habit which was also perpetuated in the years to come.1 During a world championship, after defeating England, people were shouting right in Universităţii Square, the sacred place of the Revolution and of the Ragamuffin movement: ?We the ragamuffins pissed on the hooligans!?

In the ?90s, the national Romanian football team managed to obtain the best results of all its history. In 1994, Romania was present in the United States, in the quarters of the World Cup and it scored the fifth rank in the final classification of the championship. A real success for the Romanian football! The main players of the so-called ?golden generation? played for prestigious football club: For Ajax and Einhoven in Holland, for Real Madrid and Barcelona in Spain, for Chelsea in UK. Within the German championship, Lupescu and Dorinel Munteanu had played for years at the highest level in Bundesliga. A bit later, Hagi and Gică Popescu had really made it at Galatasaray in Turkey and, together with their team, they reached important stages in the European Cup. Mircea Lucescu managed to build a successful international career as a coach, winning a European cup.

We must think that everything which hap

1 Indeed, on 13th June 1990 there was a political demonstration, targeted at setting Marian Munteanu, the soul of Universităţii Square, free. During the manifestation, there had been an announcement concerning the resignation signed by Peter Mladenov, the former Bulgarian communist leader. Someone wrote on a big piece of carton: ?Mladenov: 1; Iliescu :0? As if on a finger-post. People immediately started shouting: ? The tying, the tying!? (Petre Popovăţ)

pened in football after 1990 cannot be severed from the phenomena taking place within the Romanian society. The Romanian football carried on a set of flaws pertaining to the previous system and, one way or another, managed to perpetuate them. At the same time, the sense of renewal and change also appeared but it was always affected by corruption and by the intervention of several people belonging to a system which used to function in the past.

A certain intervention of the political side was also felt, meaning that sooner or later, politicians discovered that it was quite fashionable to be connected to the football phenomenon and that, by getting closer to this world, they would gain popularity. They used to go to certain matches, sitting in the official stand. There were also other politicians helping certain clubs connected to those pertaining to their departments like Steaua, Dinamo and Rapid. On Rapid stadium there is a grounds called ?Băsescu Grounds?, since it had been built during Băsescu?s mandate, while he was Minister of the Transportation and another ?Văcăroiu Grounds?, built while he was a prime-minister, both of them being Rapid?s fans. Today, George Copos, the president of the club is a Deputy Prime-minister.

Translated by Raluca Vîjîiac

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