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Ferencváros: Budapest’s Biggest Club Has the Craziest Fans in Hungary

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Fradi
Chivista / CC BY-SA

Ferencváros Torna Club (FTC), also known as Ferencváros, is one of the oldest football clubs in Europe and the most decorated team in Hungary.

The “Fradi” have won 29 domestic league titles, 6 Hungarian Super Cup trophies, Inter-City Fairs Cup Winners, and a UEFA Cup Winner’s Cup final to their rich history. 

For all the team’s glory on the field, they have a solid backing of fans who are considered to be among the craziest fans Europe.

History and Achievements

Ferencvaros

Ferencváros is named after a district of Budapest. They came into existence in 1889. The club had various sections before they came up with an idea of a football team. In fact, the football section did not become fully operational. They started playing officially in the next year, 1901, when they took part in the Hungarian National Championship 

When World War II started, Ferencváros had already won more than 12 top-flight league titles. The team together with MTK Budapest were the two dominant sides at that time. 

After the end of the war, the “Fradi” – as they are popularly known – won their 17th title. However, things took an unexpected turn after that. In over 10 years, in the 50s, they did not achieve much or win any league trophy. They only won the Hungarian Cup once in that period. It was also during this period when they would play under the name “Kanizsi”, from 1951 to 1956. 

In 1963, they got to the semi-final of the Inter-City Fairs Cup, known today as the Europa League. Two years later they went two steps further. The team not only reached the final but also won it in style. They managed to beat Juventus by a solitary goal in front of 40,000 fans at the Stadio Comunale.

In the 70s, they had more success on the International scene compared to their domestic campaign. They only won one Hungarian Championship but managed to get to the semi-final of UEFA Cup in 1972. The Fradi also reached the final of the Cup Winners Cup in 1975, which they lost againt Dynamo Kyiv.

Even though they have not reached those heights in the 21 century, they are still the most successful and decorated Hungarian team.

Stadium

The first stadium Ferencváros used was the Üllóí Úti Stadion. They stayed here from 1911 to 1974. After that, the stands were brought down and the stadium was renovated.

On their 75th anniversary, the Stadion Albert Flórián (changed the name in 2007) was inaugurated.

Now, However, the team has a new modern stadium. With their huge fan base, Ferencváros opened the Groupama Arena in 2014. It hosts 20,000 spectators in UEFA related games and 23,700 in the normal domestic matches.

Ferencvaros Ultras and the B-Közep 

Even though the club has fans around Hungary, the majority are from the capital Budapest. Led by the Green Monsters, the Ferencváros ultras were found in the middle of section B (B-Közep) in the old ground.

Today, the ultras group and others, such as Eastern Green, can be seen and heard at the Groupama Arena or any away game. They are conspicuous with their green, black and white colours, tifos, attires and flags. Flares are always seen in games involving Ferencváros.

The Ferencváros ultras have a friendship with various ultras from different European countries, including Panathinaikos and Rapid Wien. They all play in green and call themselves the “Green Brothers”. They are also friendly with Hungarian Ultras of Zalaegerszeg and Baltyk Gdynia as well as Slask Wroclaw, all from Poland.

Rivalries

The Fradi have rivalries with several teams from Budapest. They include MTK Budapest, Ujpest, Budapest Honved, Debrecen, and Diosgyor. They are seen as a threat by every team that they face because of what they have so far achieved.

However, their biggest rival by far is Ujpest. The Rivalry dates back to the 1930s. This derby has the most spectators in their entire domestic league. The game is highly competitive as it has been witnessed in past encounters.

Moreover, their fixture against MTK Budapest, which is known as the Eternal Derby or Orokrangado is one to watch out for. It is the oldest football derby in Hungary. It started in the 1903 season. The Honved game is also an important fixture in their season due to their close proximity.

When in Budapest as football fan, Ferencvaros is the club to go see. It’s beautiful, loud and the atmosphere the fans make it a worthwhile visit.

Midfielder @ Hooligan F.C.

Donald Maloba is a Kenyan football writer and former football player. He eats, sleeps, and breathes football. He supports AFC Leopards.

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