Crveni Ðavoli

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Crveni Djavoli - Црвени Ђаволи
Red Devils Kragujevac3.JPG
A part of Djavoli at the Čika Dača Stadium
Nickname Pakleni (The Hellish)
Abbreviation CD89
Founded March 9, 1989
Type Supporters' group, Ultras group
Team Radnički Kragujevac
Motto Radnički and nothing more!
Headquarters Kragujevac,  Serbia
Arenas Čika Dača Stadium
Jezero Hall
Stand South
Coordinates 44°01′15.14″N 20°53′57.10″E / 44.0208722°N 20.8991944°E / 44.0208722; 20.8991944
Website CrveniDjavoli.com

Crveni Djavoli (Serbian Cyrillic: Црвени Ђаволи, English: The Red Devils) or Djavoli (pronounced in English: Jawoli), are the organized supporters of the Kragujevac based professional football club Radnički Kragujevac. They are one of main supporter groups in Serbia. Besides football club, they also support other sport sections of the Radnički Kragujevac Sport Association.

History[edit]

Early years[edit]

Since its foundation, Radnički is a magnet for the audience in Kragujevac and its surroundings. During the Kingdom of Yugoslavia (1918–1943), the followers of Kragujevac were one of the most numerous and most loyal group of supporters, following their team wherever they played. They were recognisable by the red caps they wore. Trips to away games were organized, usually by train. The first "fan train" startet on 29 July, in 1934. About 600 Radnički Kragujevac fans drove to Belgrade for a qualification match for the national championship against BASK. After Belgrade the "fan train" became a tradition, and the fans traveling to away games to Zagreb, Sarajevo, Split, Novi Sad, Niš, Skoplje and other cities.[1] At the home games, against teams like Rapid Wien, Olympique Marseille, Ferencváros Budapest and Honvéd Budapest, came up to 10,000 fans to support their club. The support continued after the second world war. In 1946, Radnički Kragujevac played against Red Star Belgrade for membership of the Yugoslav First League. There were so many fans that the former City Stadium was too small to accommodate all visitors and supporters of Radnički Kragujevac. Then the city and the club decided to build a new stadium. The first game which was played on the new Čika Dača Stadium, was in 1957 between Radnički Kragujevac and Partizan Belgrade in front of 30,000 enthusiastic fans.[2]

1969 and the origin of the name[edit]

The real spectator boom began in Kragujevac in the late sixties. In 1969, Radnički were promoted first time to the Yugoslav First League after beating Sutjeska from Nikšić and FK Crvenka in the play-off. To Nikšić traveled more than 1,000 Radnički supporters and in Crvenka came up to several thousand. At that time began the first approaches of organized support. In the Yugoslavian league Radnički acquired much more supporters. In the home game against Hajduk Split were 35,000 spectators. But the away win against Partizan Belgrade should make history. On this 7 September, in 1969, the Radnički fans support their team particularly fanatical and organized one of the first torch show. The atmosphere was so fantastic that it was compared with the atmosphere at Old Trafford stadium in Manchester (statements from local and foreign journalists and opponents). On this day, the Radnički fans and the club were given the nickname Crveni Djavoli (English: Red Devils), after the nickname for Manchester United. All thus made headlines. After that game, the Brazilian football giant FC Santos with the legendary Pele was so impressed by the atmosphere, instead of the friendly game against Partizan Belgrade, they drove to Kragujevac and played against Radnički. They were not disappointed, because 40,000 spectators were at the Čika Dača Stadium and around the stadium were a further seven to eight thousand enthusiastic fans. Radnički achieved with the support of their Djavoli in a legendary atmosphere a 4-4 draw. The Djavoli attracted thereby for the first time worldwide attention on themselves. In these years Radnički´s home games were very well attended and well known for its great atmosphere mainly made by Djavoli. Numerous Djavoli traveled to away games. So they went to the games to Belgrade, Split, Zagreb, Skopje, Ljubljana, Maribor and other cities.[2][3]

Establishment and 1990s[edit]

The first organized meeting of the Djavoli was on 9 March, in 1989. Together, the fans went to the basketball game between Radnički Kragujevac and Napredak Kruševac. The Djavoli took advantage of this day as the day of its official founding. Initially a small group of kids. Mane, Laze, Amerikanac, Pižon are just some of the names of guys who have participated in the foundation. First tour of the Ðavoli was Bor. So they went to the games to Užice, Čačak, Kruševac and other cities. Besides football games, they went to basketball games as well. However, in those years cheering starts again and the Djavoli began slowly to grow. But with the decay of Yugoslavia, Radnički sank deeper and deeper. The civil war (1992-1995), the inflation and the UN sanctions have hit the state and his population hard. Radnički played again in the third division and fewer Djavoli gathered. The struggle for their continued existens about two years. In 1994, the management organized tours for the fans. The first game was in Kraljevo, where the Djavoli were going with two buses. For the next away game, there were already five buses. To all away games, at average of seven buses and to the game after Požarevac even twelve were filled with the Djavoli. Over time, the situation improves and the Djavoli got more and more members.[3]

Characteristics[edit]

The Djavoli does not consist of a certain group of people with a specific identity. People from different social backgrounds are assembled at the group. The symbol of the Djavoli is a Hajduk with the Serbian traditional cap called Šajkača. In Serbian tradition, the Hajduk is a romanticised hero figure, a kind of Serbian Robin Hood. During the 18th century, the dense forests of Šumadija were the refuge for the Hajduks that fought against Ottoman occupation. Kragujevac is the main city of the Šumadija region and the Šajkača belongs to the traditional folk attire of Šumadija. Hence, they use rebellious soul of the Hajduks against injustice and the characteristic Šajkača cap as their symbol.

A graffiti of the Djavoli in Kragujevac.

The Djavoli are primarily an anti-fascist supporter group. One reason is the Kragujevac massacre by Nazi German soldiers during World War II. About 7000 Serbian men and boys were murdered. Therefore comes mainly the deep-rooted antifascist attitude of the Djavoli. The group's traditional colours are mainly red which are also the colours of all the Radnički Kragujevac sports clubs. They wearing on match days usually red clothing of all kinds. Many fans wear the official team products as well as the products based on Djavoli. Some wear especially red caps, just like the first fans of Radnički Kragujevac through which they were recognisable. Some also wear the Šajkača. Their style of supporting includes the use of flares and large flags, choreographys, chanting, displaying of banners and other stuff to be used during support. They also use instruments like drums, sometimes also trumpets, similar to the supporters in South America. This creates for the region a typical and distinctive atmosphere. Similar to the Balkan Brass Bands during the Guča Trumpet Festival in central Serbia.[3]

Friendships[edit]

They are in a brotherhood with the organized fan group of FK Zemun, the Taurunum Boys.[4] They have this relationship since 1998. It all began when a prominent Taurunum Boy member has lived and has a family in Kragujevac and the Taurunum Boys visited a barrage match back when Radnički Kragujevac fought to enter the major leagues. Ever since then the brotherhood has been growing and growing, and today it has been passed to the younger generations.[5] The Djavoli have also a long friendship with fans of Sloga Kraljevo, the Kasapi ("The Butchers"). This friendship can be seen during football and basketball matches, where they chanting together in the stands. It also started recently good relations with the organized supporters of Radnički Niš, the Meraklije. Their relations began mainly through the mutual support of the growing local patriotism in the Serbian fan scene. To the two clubs can be drawn various parallel. The clubs connects next to the club name also the founding years of the two clubs in 1923.[6] Also both groups were founded in the same year, in 1989.[4] The name Radnički means "Labour´s" in Serbian and its roots come from the relations which the clubs had with Labour movements during the first half of the 20th century. Their often mentioned slogan is: "Radnička deca, radnička braća", which translates to "Workers childs, workers brothers". Another connection is their anti-fascist attitude through similar tragedies which happened in both cities during the World War II. In the city of Kragujevac the Kragujevac massacre and in Niš the Bubanj massacre, both committed by Nazi German soldiers, which had in both cities a strong influence on subsequent generations. All reasons, why the first top tier match between these clubs ended during the 2012–13 season especially in a respectful and peaceful atmosphere for each other, although they not played against each other for a long time.[7]

Trivia[edit]

In the former Yugoslavia, the Djavoli were considered to be one of the most passionate fans. They showed their passion also outside of the stadium. Being a fan of Radnički Kragujevac meant fore some to love their team more than anything, even the own girlfriend. Many of the male fans before they got married, took his future wife to the stadium and told her that this was his first and greatest love of his life. So trying to explain his passion for the club. One even took his girlfriend to the stadium and told her the following sentence: "This is my first love, you're my second". Then he made her a marriage proposal and she accepted it. To date, there are fans who do the same. It has become something of a tradition. But there are also other examples. There was a fan who suddenly left the Slava (one of most significant feast days for many Serbs), attended the game and returned as if nothing had happened. Another story happened during a wedding. A couple of Radnički Kragujevac fans among the guests went quickly to the stadium, watched the game in their suits and returned quickly to the wedding. The current generation also carries the same passion into itself.[3]

Crveni Ðavoli today[edit]

The Djavoli at the stadium in 2011.

The Djavoli grew again to a few thousand men strong organized fan group. Young and new generations from Kragujevac and Šumadija District are accepting Radnički Kragujevac as their club, becoming its loyal followers. Moreover, they have in own city the upper hand against local fans of the big Belgrade clubs Red Star and Partizan, which certainly can not say too many towns in Serbia by itself.[4] They are now one of the main Serbian supporter groups and are more known as ultras, not hooligans. Well organized they are always on the southside of the Čika Dača Stadium, from where they fiercely support their club. Besides football, they also support other sport sections of the Radnički Kragujevac Sport Association, especially the basketball club KK Radnički Kragujevac, the handball club RK Radnički Kragujevac and the volleyball club OK Radnički Kragujevac. The goal of the Djavoli is to return to the old strength like in the glorious late 1960s, to grow as a group and in his organisation and the creation of a passionate atmosphere at Radnički's games, especially at home games but also on away games.

References[edit]

  1. ^ FK Radnički 1923 - Kragujevac - 1. Osnivanje
  2. ^ a b FK Radnički 1923 - Kragujevac - 3. Navijači – Crveni Đavoli
  3. ^ a b c d Blic Online | Prosili su devojke na stadionu Radničkog
  4. ^ a b c The Blickfang Ultra, Edition Nr. 25, Radnički Kragujevac vs. Radnički Niš, Germany, 22 September 2012. p. 10
  5. ^ Историја групе | ТАУРУНУМ 1987 ЗЕМУН
  6. ^ The Blickfang Ultra, Edition Nr. 25, Radnički Kragujevac vs. Radnički Niš, Germany, 22 September 2012. p. 9
  7. ^ The Blickfang Ultra, Edition Nr. 25, Radnički Kragujevac vs. Radnički Niš, Germany, 22 September 2012. p. 13

External links[edit]