Stories and pictures of the beautiful game.
FK Teplice vs. FC Zbrojovka Brno 2:0 (0:0)
November 25, 2012 | attendance: 3,318 | pictures
Getting from Prague to Teplice by train is easy and only takes as long as a football game. You’re heading so far north you’re almost in Germany, and while November has been balmy in the Prague area, a brisk gale is blowing at Teplice v Čechách train station (make sure to go to that one as there are other Teplices further south). You can feel the proximity of the mountains, it is cold and foggy. If you walk the mile from the station to the stadium, you will likely pass several deserted alleys, the city appears rather bleak.
Teplice’s Na Stínadlech stadium offers room for 18,221. It is horseshoe-shaped, there is only a small stand at the open side so you are technically able to enjoy an Erzgebirge mountain panorama. Unfortunately it is fogged up today as is Teplice’s situation in the league: they are deep down at a relegation spot (second to last). To motivate fans to come and support the team, admission is free for this last league game before winter break. There are officially 3,318 spectators, but I wonder how they counted that so accurately since there were no pat-downs at the entrance.
Maybe they just counted the number of Klatschpappen (I just have to use the brusk German word for what one might describe as “clap banners”, and what the Czech call “tleskadla“) that were handed out to people as they got inside. I knew there had to be a catch, this game being free and all. You have to understand how the Klatschpappe is loathed in Germany, and how it is a symbol for a sterile, uniform atmosphere – the kind you get in indoor sports where people now only know how to chant “offense!”(clap clap) or “defense!” (clap clap). Fortunately the folded piece of cardboard has not spread to any decent German football grounds.
The atmosphere in Teplice is doing the Klatschpappe justice: the stadium’s announcer keeps begging the audience to create some noise, and he is already doing half the work by squeaking: “Teplice!” – clap clap – hoot hoot. There are about hundred Ultras fenced in at the corner of the stadium but their attempts do not get across to the rest of the ground where the atmosphere is mostly family-like and relaxed, despite the dire club’s situation. Less than a hundred Brno fans made it to Teplice, they are standing in the other corner, also well fenced in. They sure give the best they can but the level of noise they produce is also hardly noticeable.
There is also not much action on the pitch, not in the first half anyway. FC Zbrojovka Brno is sixth in the league and a bit more dominant. Their goal shortly before half-time being flagged offside sure was a bit unlucky for them. Especially as Teplice put them under pressure for the entire second half and eventually decide the match with two quick goals within six minutes:
Ján Chocanec just needs to tap his foot into a nice cross from the right in the 61st minute, followed by a goal that required some real acrobatics: Teplice’s Ajdin Mahmutovič makes a run for a high cross, while Brno’s keeper Martin Doležal leaves his goal to do the same. At the same time, both fly high in the air, at the same time they raise their respective right leg. Mahmutovič gets his foot on the ball just a fraction of a second faster and watches it arch into the back of the net.
Maybe it is because I am closer to them in the second half, but the Ultras do sound like they put the foot on the pedal, their chants echo quote nicely under the roof. You can still hear the stadium announcer’s attempts to get the Klatschpappen going, and so there are still subdued claps and hoots of “Teplice! Teplice!”
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