Upon the confirmation of an all-German Champions League final between Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund there was much excitement. But has some been lost by the final being held on 25th May?
Author: Henry Wizgier
Poland coach Waldemar Fornalik is a man under pressure, with the country’s hopes of qualifying for the 2014 World Cup in Brazil hanging by a thread. In fact, even reaching Brazil may not keep Fornalik in a job.
Arkadiusz Milik is Poland’s great striking hope and now, at just 18 years old, he is off to Bundesliga side Bayer Leverkusen. It is quite a turnaround for a player who had an unsuccessful trial at English side Tottenham Hotspur.
Poland has enjoyed a memorable 2012, successfully co-hosting Euro 2012 with the Ukraine and revamping their footballing infrastructure to boot. But on the pitch the country has not experienced the same success, at club or international level.
Polish football may have believed that shiny new stadiums, built for Euro 2012, would go a long way towards solving their problems. The truth though is that the situation is still confused, with even new stadiums boycotted by some clubs.
Polish football has been boosted by the appointment of Zbigniew Boniek as PZPN president. A friend of UEFA president Michel Platini and a heavyweight figure, Poland hope Boniek can troubleshoot problems in the country’s game.
Poland have beaten England just once in 17 attempts, but hope to repeat the feat in a vital 2014 World Cup qualifier in Warsaw. The hosts have the players to believe in a shock.
Poland’s top flight, the Ekstraklasa, has started the 2012/13 season with a bang, causing fans to forget the pain of early exits from Europe’s competitions. And an exciting campaign could allow the Ekstraklasa to grab more attention.
English football has seen ticket prices boom since the Premier League, with players pocketing increased wages. This, and fans’ acceptance, stands in contrast to Germany.
Polish club football is in dire straits, with the country’s sides failing to capitalise on the Euro 2012 feel-good factor and missing out on the group stages of both the Champions League and the Europa League. At the root of the problem is a lack of money.