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The World Seen With  A Football Fan's Eye

Widzew Lodz

01.09.2012 EKSTRAKLASA 2012/2013
Widzew Łódź - GKS Bełchatów 1:0

Third match, third consecutive win. "Enter The Dragon" looks adequate enough. The achievement is the more impressive the longer you scrutinize the resources currently available at Widzew. It looks as if this sort of season opening was facilitated by just a very solid goalkeeper and same time the team's captain Maciej Mielcarz (called by the fans in a somewaht familiarised fashion as "Maciek"), a greenhorn Jakub Bartkowski operating on the left side and Marcin Kaczmarek - a midfield veteran working extremely hard across the length and breadth of the pitch.
The guests had come to Lodz not to primarily lose and pretended, quite unnecessarily, to be non-existing in the first half. Apart from a literally single opportunity (the ball hit the post) the team played a sluggish football and a particularly ponderous Kosowski (the only Belchatow "star") was exposing himself to a pretty unrefined teasing : "Take the wig off!".
Some tough exposure appeared also the be a bitter fate of the guests team coach - the audience from the sectors most proximate to the substitute bench permanently and specificly imputet Mr Kiereś his boots being made of a snake skin. The Lodz fans complained also the allegendly only reason for the coach to wear a suit: namely a visit to the voivodship capital hence a metropoly compared with peripherial Belchatow. Indeed, Mr Kiereś looked a bit provincial on that Saturday afternoon. Supposedly, the clothes do not make a man on the one hand whilst what you see is what to get on the other one. The world is brutal.
The Belchatow coach said in the media conference "the better team had lost the match". He probably meant the second half where his team indeed was keeping up the pace and skill, at times creating opportunities in the Widzew penalty area. The facts can not be denied though: three games, three defeats so the situation extremely different vs. the Lodz team statistics quoted above. I have no specific complaints versus GKS but every now and then I am wondering - what actually justifies existence of such a team? Home match attendance marginable, no big traditions, most of the Belchatow football fans support one of the Lodz teams anyway. The question is valid for several teams in Poland and this seems to be one of the core issues the Polish football has been facing for decades however this is the theme for some separate considerations.
I am truly impressed with the audience behavior, not just because of singing chain (four sectors were passing the club song from one to another one) but for the overall atmosphere. As in practically every audience dominated by men, one can hardly hear the language of Polish poets, yet everything happened to be within the unspoken boundries with little or no room for rudeness I experienced at the local rivals stadium during the Lodz derby earlier that year. My father-in-law was so much impressed that he claimed to pop into the Widzew stadium in the near future again. This is probably the best evidence for the attitude of an average supporter who has so far felt most comfortably while watching football on the television.