|Full name||Legia Warszawa SA|
Legioniści ("Legionnaires", "Legionarries")
|Founded||March 1916 as Drużyna Sportowa Legia (Sport Team Legia)|
|Ground||Polish Army Stadium|
|Website||Club home page|
Legia Warszawa // (Polish pronunciation: [ˈlɛɡʲja varˈʂava]), known in English as Legia Warsaw, is a professional football club based in Warsaw, Poland. Legia is one of the most successful Polish football clubs in history winning eleven Ekstraklasa Champions titles, a record 18 Polish Cup trophies and four Polish SuperCup matches. The club's home venue is the Polish Army Stadium.
Legia was formed between 5 and 15 March 1916 during military operations in World War I on the Eastern Front in the neighborhood of Maniewicze in Volhynia, as the main football club of the Polish Legions. After the war, the club was reactivated 14 March 1920 in an officer casino in Warsaw as Wojskowy Klub Sportowy Warszawa, renamed Legia in 1923 after merger with another local club, Korona. It became the main official football club of the Polish Army – Wojskowy Klub Sportowy Legia Warszawa (Military Sports Club Legia Warsaw). From 1949 to 1957, Legia was known as CWKS Warszawa (Central Military Sports Club Warsaw).
Before 8 April 2004 it was owned by Pol-Mot and from 8 April 2004 (sold for 3 million złoty) until 9 January 2014, it was owned by media conglomerate ITI Group Currently the club is owned by Dariusz Mioduski (60%), Bogusław Leśnodorski (20%) and Maciej Wandzel (20%) – who serves as the club's chairman. The first two acquired the club for an undisclosed sum, which also included paying off debts made by previous ownership, and Wandzel joined them in September 2014.
- 1 History
- 2 Stadium
- 3 Sponsors
- 4 Supporters and rivalries
- 5 Achievements
- 6 Legia in Europe
- 7 Club records
- 8 Players
- 9 Coaching staff
- 10 Coaches and managers
- 11 See also
- 12 References
- 13 External links
Before World War II
Legia was formed between 5 and 15 March 1916 during military operations in World War I on the Eastern Front in the neighborhood of Maniewicze in Volhynia, as the main football club of the Polish Legions. The team had started its first training earlier in the spring of 1915, in the city of Piotrków Trybunalski. In July 1916, due to the Brusilov Offensive, Legia permanently moved to the capital city of Warsaw.
Its first game in Warsaw was played on 29 April 1917 against the local rival Polonia Warsaw. The score was a draw – 1–1. Until the end of World War I, Legia had played nine games in Warsaw; it won six and drew three. Its first away game was against KS Cracovia, which Legia won 2–1. With the win over Cracovia, at that time the current Polish first league champion, Legia was baptized as the unofficial champion of the country.
Legia played its first match in Polish first league in Łódź on 8 May 1927 against ŁKS Łódź, winning 6–1. Marian Łańko scored the first league goal for the club (in the same game he scored a hat-trick). Since 1930, Legia has played at the Polish Army Stadium, the construction of which was a gift to the club from Józef Piłsudski. In 1936 Legia was relegated to the second division, where it remained until the end of World War II.
After World War II
After World War II, Legia boosted its squad with many new players and at the end of 1949 the club changed its name again, this time to Centralny Wojskowy Klub Sportowy (Central Army Sports Club). Eventually Kazimierz Górski joined the club and became a player for both the team and the Poland national team.
The 1970s were known as Poland's golden age of football. From the 1960s to the 1970s, Legia's roster included powerful football players such as Jan Tomaszewski, Kazimierz Deyna, and Robert Gadocha. In the 1969–70 European Cup Legia achieved a successful campaign by reaching the semi-finals alongside Feyenoord, Leeds United, and Celtic. The following year, Legia reached the quarter-finals where they lost to Atlético Madrid.
Though the club had many national team players including Kazimierski, Okoński, Dziekanowski, Janas, Majewski, Buncol, Kubicki, Wdowczyk and others, the club had problems winning any league titles. However, thanks to winning four Polish Cups, the team was able to compete in European competitions.
One of the more memorable European runs was the near upset against Internazionale during the UEFA Cup 1985–86, after two 0–0 games Legia lost in extra time. The next season Legia were yet again drawn against Inter, this time winning at home 3–2 but losing away 1–0 thus losing on away goals.
Winning the Polish Cup for the 9th time in the 1989–90 season Legia subsequently played in the UEFA Cup Winners' Cup. The team then managed by Władysław Stachurski went through to the semi-finals of the competition facing Manchester United. Legia lost the first match in Warsaw 1–3 and had drawn in Manchester 1–1. After winning the 1994–95 season, Legia qualified for the 1995–96 UEFA Champions League. The team got through to the quarter-finals stage against Panathinaikos drawing the first game 0–0 and losing 3–0 in the second.
In 2002, Legia lifted the seventh Ekstraklasa champion title. As a result, Legia qualified for the 2002–03 UEFA Champions League. Following a win with Vardar in the second qualifying round, Legia lost the third qualifying round to Barcelona. In 2002, after a 3–0 win and 1–2 loss against Wisła Kraków, Legia won the Ekstraklasa Cup. The 2005–06 Ekstraklasa season resulted in Legia's eighth Polish championship.
Legia won its 10th title with another league championship at the end of the 2013–14 Ekstraklasa season. Legia qualified for the 2016-17 Champions League group stages for the first time in 21 years after defeating Dundalk on August 23, 2016. The Legionnaires found themselves in group F with the likes of Real Madrid, Borussia Dortmund, and Sporting Lisbon. They finished third place after winning 1–0 against Sporting Lisbon on the last match day in the group stages, sending them to the round of 32 in the 2016–17 Europa League. Legia was drawn against Ajax where the first match fell goalless in Warsaw.
Legia plays its games at Legia Warsaw Municipal Stadium of Marshal Józef Piłsudski (Polish: Stadion Miejski Legii Warszawa im. Marszałka Józefa Piłsudskiego), traditionally also referred to as the Polish Army Stadium (Polish: Stadion Wojska Polskiego), which is an all-seater football-specific stadium in Warsaw, Poland. Legia has been playing there since 9 August 1930. With space for 31,800 spectators it is the 5th biggest football stadium in the Ekstraklasa. The stadium underwent significant reconstruction between 2008 and 2011, during which all of the stands were demolished and replaced with bigger and more modern ones which increased the stadium's capacity from 13,500 to 31,800 seats. The former Polish Army Stadium is currently owned by the City of Warsaw.
|Years||Football kit||Main sponsor|
Supporters and rivalries
As one of the most successful clubs in Poland, Legia Warsaw is also one of its most popular clubs. Legia has gained devotion from generations of fans from Warsaw as well as around the country. Legia supporters are generally considered very spontaneous, dedicated and sometimes fanatical. Accordingly, in terms of quality of football support, they are also often described as the best supporters in Poland. Groups of fans follow Legia on practically all away matches, both domestic and international. Supporters of Legia occasionally attract also some negative attention, in particular after events such as riots in Lithuania during a match against Vėtra Vilnius on 10 July 2007.
Traditionally, the most devoted and spontaneous fans occupy the Żyleta stand in their stadium. Before the stadium renovation (2008–11), the "old" Żyleta referred only to the center section within the eastern stand of the stadium (occasionally, it would also refer to eastern stand as a whole). There is a special exhibition dedicated to the "old" Żyleta in the Legia club museum. Today, after the stadium's renovation, the "new" Żyleta means the whole northern stand of stadium (located behind the goal).
As regards their political sentiments, the supporters of Legia tend to be more right wing. During communist times, in particular during the 1980s, Legia fans showed their patriotic and strongly anti-communistic views. Today, the fans actively participate in annual commemorations of the Warsaw Uprising and Polish Independence Day. Legia fans are also vocal with their views on domestic issues, e.g. their conflict with former Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk, as well as on international politics, e.g. by way of displaying banners reading "Kosovo is Serbian" at the stadium. On 22 October 2014, when Legia played with the Ukrainian Metalists they displayed a banner with the names Lwów (Lviv) and Wilno (Vilnius) along with the coat of arms of Rzeczpospolita and flag of Poland on background, what led to negative reactions. On 19 August 2015, in Lviv and Kiev, where Legia played with Zorya, clashes between Ukrainian and Polish fans occurred. Legia Warsaw supporters maintain friendly relations with fans of Zagłębie Sosnowiec and Olimpia Elbląg. Internationally, Legia supporters maintain friendly relations with fans of ADO Den Haag and Juventus. Their main rivals include Polonia Warsaw, Lech Poznań, Wisła Kraków and Widzew Łódź.
|Matches||Legia wins||Draws||Polonia wins|
- Polish Championship (Ekstraklasa):
- Polish Cup:
- Winners (18-record): 1955, 1956, 1964, 1966, 1973, 1980, 1981, 1989, 1990, 1994, 1995, 1997, 2008, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2015, 2016
- Finalist (6): 1952, 1969, 1972, 1988, 1991, 2004
- Polish SuperCup:
- Winners (4): 1989, 1994, 1997, 2008
- Finalist (7): 1990, 1995, 2006, 2012, 2014, 2015, 2016
- Polish League Cup:
- Winner (1): 2002
- Finalist (2): 2000, 2008
- Youth Teams:
- Polish U-19 Champion: 1969, 2013, 2015, 2016
- Polish U-19 Runner-up: 1962
- Polish U-19 Bronze Medal: 1964
- Polish U-17 Runner-up: 2009, 2011
- UEFA Champions League:
- Semi-final (1): 1970
- Quarter-final (2): 1971, 1996
- Group stage (1): 2016
- UEFA Cup Winners' Cup:
- Semi-final (1): 1991
- Quarter-final (2): 1965, 1982
- UEFA Europa League:
- Group stage (2): 2014, 2016
- Round of 32 (3): 2012, 2015, 2017
Legia in Europe
Note: Bold means home results, italics means neutral place results or penalised result
UEFA Team ranking
As of 30 April 2017.
|75||Olympique de Marseille||28.266|
Best results in European competitions
|European Cup / UEFA Champions League|
|1970||Semi-Final||lost to Feyenoord 0–0 in Warsaw, 0–2 in Rotterdam|
|1971||Quarter-Final||lost to Atlético Madrid 0–1 in Madrid, 2–1 in Warsaw|
|1996||Quarter-Final||lost to Panathinaikos 0–0 in Warsaw, 0–3 in Athens|
|UEFA Cup Winners' Cup|
|1965||Quarter-Final||lost to 1860 München 0–4 in Warsaw, 0–0 in Munich|
|1982||Quarter-Final||lost to Dinamo Tbilisi 0–1 in Warsaw, 0–1 in Tbilisi|
|1991||Semi-Final||lost to Manchester United 1–3 in Warsaw, 1–1 in Manchester|
- Number of seasons in Ekstraklasa: 73 (from 1927–36 and from 1948–present)
- First win in the league: May 8, 1927 Turystów Łódź – Legia Warszaw 1–6 (0–5)
- Biggest win in the league: 19 August 1956 Legia Warsaw – Wisła Kraków 12–0 (5–0)
- Biggest defeat in the league: September 3, 1927 Pogoń Lwów – Legia Warsaw 11–2 (6–1)
- Longest series of victories in the league: 9 (in 1931 and 1932 and 2005–06)
- Longest series of defeats in the league: 7 (1936)
- Oldest goalscorer: Lucjan Brychczy – 37 years, 2 months, 31 days
- Youngest goalscorer: Ariel Borysiuk – 16 years, 8 months, 21 days
As of 15 May 2016 the players with the most appearances for Legia are:
As of 15 May 2016 the ten players with the most goals for Legia are:
- As of 19 February 2017.
Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.
Out on loan
Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.
Hall of Fame
This is a list of former players and coaches who have been inducted into the Legia Warsaw Hall of Fame.
|Head coach||Jacek Magiera|
|Assistant coach||Aleksandar Vuković|
|Assistant coach||Tomasz Łuczywek|
|Assistant coach||Lucjan Brychczy|
|Goalkeeping coach||Grzegorz Szamotulski|
|Goalkeeping coach||Krzysztof Dowhań|
|Match analyst||Daniel Myśliwiec|
|Match analyst||Maciej Krzymień|
|Fitness coach||Piotr Zaręba|
|Fitness coach||Sebastian Krzepota|
|Team Spokesperson||Konrad Paśniewski|
|Team Doctor||Jacek Jaroszewski|
|Team Doctor||Maciej Tabiszewski|
|Reserve Team Coach||Krzysztof Dębek|
|Academy Director||Ernest Waś|
|U-19 Coach||Darius Banasik|
|U-17 Coach||Kamil Socha|
|U-19 and U-17 Goalkeeping coach||Marcin Muszyński|
Coaches and managers
- Legia won 1st place in 1992–93 Ekstraklasa, but was accused of corruption. Result of the last match was cancelled and the team dropped into second place in the table. The Polish FA (PZPN) decided to give the championship to Lech Poznań.
"Poland – List of final tables (RSSSF)". rsssf.com. Retrieved 2013-06-08.
- Polska, Grupa Wirtualna. "Lotto Ekstraklasa - Piłka nożna - WP SportoweFakty".
- "Legia Warsaw 1-0 Sporting: Guilherme seals Europa League spot". Goal.com. 7 December 2016. Retrieved 19 February 2017.
- "Gazeta Wyborcza" (16 November 2008). "Żyleta – dr Jekyll i mr Hyde". gazeta.pl. Retrieved 2011-08-28.
- "Legia Warsaw official website: Muzeum Legii – Żyleta". Legia.com. Retrieved 2011-08-28.
- Kassies, Bert. "UEFA Team Ranking 2017".
- "Legia Warsaw current squad" (in Polish). Legia Warsaw. Retrieved 17 February 2016.
- "Galeria Sław - Kadra - Legia Warszawa".
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