São Paulo Athletic Club

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This article is about the rugby union club founded in 1888. For the association football club, see São Paulo FC.
São Paulo A.C. (SPAC)
Atletico saopaulo logo.png
Full name São Paulo Athletic Club
Union Brazilian Rugby Confederation
Founded May 13, 1888; 126 years ago (1888-05-13)
Location São Paulo
Region São Paulo (state)
President John McDonnel
League(s) Campeonato Brasileiro
1st kit
2nd kit
3rd kit
Official website
spac.org.br

São Paulo Athletic Club - officially these days Clube Atlético São Paulo, but generally referred to as SPAC, is a Brazilian sports club founded on May 15, 1888 by Charles William Miller and several English immigrants, being one of the first association football clubs in the country. Although football is not practised anymore, SPAC currently hosts the practice of futsal, rugby union, squash, swimming, tennis and volleyball.

History[edit]

São Paulo Athletic Clube was established by the British community living in São Paulo, in 1888. Those British residents used to play cricket at the Pirituba field, property of British company São Paulo Railway Co.

One of the most notable members and sportsmen in the club history was Charles Miller, who after returning to his native country from England (where he had studied) began to actively participate in the development of the club. Miller (who was 19 and is considered the "father" of Paulista football) introduced football and rugby to the club in 1895, even bringing some footballs and a rules book to teach the basis of the sport there. SPAC and Miller were founding members of the Campeonato Paulista, the first football tournament not only of São Paulo but Brazil, whose first edition was in 1902. SPAC won the championship, being Miller also the top scorer of the tournament with 10 goals. SPAC would win 3 titles else (in 1903, 1904 and 1911), totalizing four football championships.

The team of 1904, tri-champion of Brazilian football.

1911 was the last successful year of football in the club. SPAC won the last game vs. SC Germania by 2-0, winning the last title for the club. The final game was played on 20 October 1912 against the same club. After that, SPAC retired from official football competitions, although the sport continued being practised at the institution but only for recreation.

Miller was also an active tennis player. The club was also founding member of the São Paulo Tennis Federation. After the football team was disbanded, rugby became the predominant sport of the club. Nowadays rugby is the only sports still active at a professional level.

With football out of competition, rugby became the main sport of the club. In 1932 and 1936 the Brazilian national team played South Africa and England, with most of its players called up from SPAC. Due to World War II rugby came to a hiatus until 1947 when the British players returned to Brazil, although the number of enthusiasts had decreased. In 1948 Jimmy Macintyre retired from rugby but he would never leave the sport, dedicating to manage the team and organizing a tour in 1950.

The Brazilian toured on Uruguay, where the team won the three games played, including the final match by 20-0. By the end of the 1940s, Irish Harry Donovan arrived in Brazil. Donovan would be president of the club (1964–65), then founding the Brazilian Rugby Union in 1963 along with Macyntire.

Honours[edit]

Poster of the SPAC football team honoring the three consecutive titles (1902-04).

Football[edit]

Rugby union[edit]

Men's

  • Campeonato Brasileiro (10): 1964, 1965, 1966, 1967, 1968, 1969, 1974, 1975, 1976,[a] 1999
  • Campeonato Paulista (1): 1999
  • Recopa (2): 2005, 2008

Women's

  • Campeonato Paulista (4): 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Shared with Niterói Rugby FC.

External links[edit]