Green Dragons

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Green Dragons in 2007

Green Dragons, also known as simply "Dragonsi"(The Dragons), are supporters of the Olimpija branch of sport clubs in Ljubljana. The most prominent roles amongst these belong to NK Olimpija and KK Union Olimpija. They are also one of two major football Ultras groups in Slovenia, the other being their traditional enemy, the Viole. They mostly wear green and white symbols and clothing, which are the club's colors. They are divided into three main sub-groups: Youth Crew, made up of the younger members, CRC, containing the veterans, and other semi-active members.

The name[edit]

Green Dragons in 2010

The name Green Dragons is connected to the symbol of the Slovenian capital, Ljubljana, which is a green dragon on top of a white castle on a red shield. The image of the dragon is therefore familiar to all the residents of the city and it even appears in bronze form on one of the more famous bridges across the Ljubljanica river, the Dragon Bridge from 1901. However, the name Green Dragons was first used during a football game against FC Prishtina in the autumn of 1988, when a fan unfurled a banner with the words: "Green Dragons". The identity of the fan is unknown and he probably had no idea of the impact he would have on Slovenian football history.

History[edit]

Active public supporting of the club NK Olimpija began in 1986 and after the Pristina game in 1988 the supporters took on the name Green Dragons. When the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia was falling apart the future of the club and its fans was unsure. Later a Slovenian league was formed. When the club finally joined this league it was left with no real rival. The first important game was played against Medvode. The Green Dragons came there by means of the players' bus which was lent to them, while the players themselves drove in their own cars. The peak of the season was marked by the "legendary" game against Maribor on the sixth of may in 1992. Nine hundred Green Dragons were present, considered a lot in those days. The opposing team of football enthusiasts had all of the banners they had brought to Ljubljana confiscated by members of the Green Dragons. The Green Dragons followed their favourite football club wherever it went. They also stated publicly that they are not going to physically attack anybody, but would still defend themselves if they were attacked and that they are going to respect others as much as others respect them. This golden season was followed by stagnation caused by the club management. This was followed by a year and a half strike by the Green Dragons until the director was changed. The next season was the leaping point of the Slovenian football star Sebastjan Cimirotič. The same autumn one of the largest incidents in Slovenian cheerleading history took place on the way to Maribor, at the train station in Štore, near Celje, considered mostly the fault of the Slovenian Police and weird coincidence. 74 Dragons were arrested. The last game of the season is remembered as the most crowded, featuring 1500 Green Dragons, resulting in lack of space for the viewers. Olimpija however lost the title to its rival, Maribor, by one point. The rise-up of the football club followed in the next two seasons. In the game against Liverpool a large number of fans was gathered again, a bit over one thousand, and completely overtook the eight hundred English ones. As interest in sports declined in Ljubljana, so did the football club that eventually fell apart. A minor football club named NK Bežigrad took the stick and was joined by the Green Dragons, trying to bring high-quality back into Slovenian sport.

External links[edit]

References[edit]

(In Slovene language)

  • [2] DOGAJA.SE article
  • [3] Union Olimpija club site
  • [4] Žurnal24 article
  • [5] A Short History of the Green Dragons, part 1
  • [6] A Short History of the Green Dragons, part 2
  • [7] A Short History of the Green Dragons, episode 3

See also[edit]