Liga 1: rezultate, clasament, program și transferuri din prima divizie de fotbal din România
Liga 1: The Top Football League in Romania
If you are a fan of football, you might have heard of Liga 1, the first division of the Romanian football league system. Liga 1 is one of the oldest and most prestigious football competitions in Europe, with a rich history and a passionate fan base. In this article, we will tell you everything you need to know about Liga 1, from its origins and format to its current season and future prospects. We will also introduce you to some of the main teams and players that make Liga 1 an exciting and competitive league to watch.
What is Liga 1 and how does it work?
Liga 1 is the top level of professional football in Romania, organized by the Romanian Professional Football League (LPF). It was founded in 1909 as Divizia A, and it has been known as Liga 1 since 2006. Liga 1 consists of 16 teams that play each other twice in a regular season, followed by a play-off or a play-out phase depending on their position in the table. The play-off phase involves the top six teams that compete for the championship title and the European qualification spots. The play-out phase involves the bottom ten teams that fight for survival and avoid relegation to Liga 2, the second division. The winner of Liga 1 qualifies for the UEFA Champions League, while the runner-up and the third-placed team qualify for the UEFA Europa Conference League. The bottom two teams are relegated to Liga 2, while the third-last team plays a relegation play-off against the third-placed team from Liga 2.
A brief history of Liga 1 and its champions
Liga 1 has a long and illustrious history that spans more than a century. The first edition of Divizia A was held in 1909-10, with six teams from Bucharest participating. Olympia Bucharest won the inaugural title, but they were soon overtaken by other clubs from the capital, such as Venus Bucharest, Rapid Bucharest, Sportul Studențesc, Steaua Bucharest (now FCSB), and Dinamo Bucharest. These clubs dominated Romanian football until the late 1960s, when teams from other regions started to challenge their supremacy. Some of these teams were UTA Arad, Politehnica Timișoara, Universitatea Craiova, FC Argeș Pitești, Jiul Petroșani, Corvinul Hunedoara, Universitatea Cluj, and CFR Cluj. In recent years, Liga 1 has become more balanced and unpredictable, with new contenders emerging such as Oțelul Galați, Astra Giurgiu, Viitorul Constanța, Sepsi OSK Sfântu Gheorghe, FC Botoșani, FC Voluntari, FC Hermannstadt, Chindia Târgoviște, CS Mioveni, FCU Craiova 1948, Petrolul Ploie ști, and FC Farul Constanța. The most successful club in Liga 1 history is FCSB, with 26 titles, followed by Dinamo Bucharest with 18, and CFR Cluj with 7. The current champions are CFR Cluj, who won their fourth consecutive title in 2020-21.
The current season of Liga 1 and its standings
The 2021-22 season of Liga 1 started on July 16, 2021, and is expected to end on May 29, 2022. The season was initially planned to have 14 teams, but it was expanded to 16 teams after the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) ruled that FC Argeș Pitești and CS Mioveni should be promoted from Liga 2, following a dispute over the licensing criteria. The two newly promoted teams joined FC Farul Constanța and Petrolul Ploiești, who won the promotion play-offs from Liga 2. The regular season of Liga 1 will end on March 6, 2022, after which the play-off and the play-out phases will begin. As of December 20, 2021, the standings of Liga 1 are as follows:
FC Farul Constanța
Sepsi OSK Sfântu Gheorghe
FCU Craiova 1948
Gaz Metan Mediaș
FC Argeș Pitești
The main teams and players in Liga 1
FC Farul Constanța: The surprise leaders of the play-off
One of the biggest surprises of the current season of Liga 1 is FC Farul Constanța, a club that was founded in 1950 and represents the city of Constanța, the largest port on the Black Sea. Farul, which means "lighthouse" in Romanian, has never won the Liga 1 title, and its best result was a third place in 1975-76. Farul was relegated to the lower leagues in 2016, but it managed to return to Liga 1 in 2021, after winning the promotion play-offs. Since then, Farul has been playing an attractive and effective football, led by coach Ianis Zicu, a former Romanian international who played for Inter Milan, Parma, and Dinamo Bucharest. Farul has also been boosted by the support of its loyal and passionate fans, who fill the Ion Oblemenco Stadium every match.
The coach, the squad, and the key players of Farul
Ianis Zicu is the youngest coach in Liga 1, at only 38 years old. He took over Farul in 2019, when the club was in Liga 2, and he guided them to promotion in his first full season. Zicu is known for his offensive and dynamic style of play, based on high pressing, quick transitions, and fluid movements. He is also praised for his ability to motivate and improve his players, many of whom are young and talented. Some of the key players of Farul are goalkeeper Valentin Cojocaru, who has kept 11 clean sheets so far; defender Bogdan Mitrea, who is the captain and the leader of the defense; midfielder Andrei Artean, who is the engine and the playmaker of the team; winger Florin Tănase, who is the top scorer and the most creative player of the team; and striker Andrei Ioniță, who is a fast and powerful forward who can score from any position.
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The achievements and the challenges of Farul
Farul has exceeded all expectations in its first season back in Liga 1, as it currently leads the table with 41 points, one more than FCSB. Farul has also scored the most goals (39) and conceded the least (15) in the league. Farul has also beaten some of the big teams in Liga 1, such as FCSB (3-0), CFR Cluj (2-0), Universitatea Craiova (3-1), and Dinamo Bucharest (2-0). Farul has also qualified for the quarter-finals of the Romanian Cup, where it will face FC Voluntari. However, Farul still faces some challenges in its quest to win its first Liga 1 title. Farul has a relatively small and inexperienced squad, which could suffer from injuries or fatigue in the second part of the season. Farul also has to deal with the pressure and the expectations that come with being at the top of the table. Farul also has to face some tough opponents in the play-off phase, such as FCSB, CFR Cluj, Universitatea Craiova, Astra Giurgiu, and Botoșani.
FCSB: The most successful and popular club in Romania
FCSB is arguably the most famous and successful club in Romania, with a history that dates back to 1947. FCSB was founded as ASA București by the Romanian Army, and it changed its name to Steaua Buc urești in 1961, and to FCSB in 2017, after a legal dispute with the Ministry of National Defense over the ownership of the name and the emblem. FCSB is the most decorated club in Romania, with 26 Liga 1 titles, 23 Romanian Cups, 6 Romanian Supercups, and 1 European Cup, which it won in 1986, becoming the first and only Eastern European club to do so. FCSB is also the most popular club in Romania, with millions of fans across the country and abroad. FCSB plays its home games at the Arena Națională, the largest stadium in Romania, with a capacity of 55,600.
The owner, the manager, and the stars of FCSB
FCSB is owned by Gigi Becali, a controversial and outspoken businessman and politician, who bought the club in 2003. Becali is known for his involvement and interference in the club's affairs, often hiring and firing coaches, signing and selling players, and criticizing and praising the team's performance. Becali is also known for his generous donations to various causes, such as churches, hospitals, and orphanages. The current manager of FCSB is Edward Iordănescu, a former Romanian international who played for Steaua București, Rapid București, and Galatasaray. Iordănescu was appointed in June 2021, replacing Bogdan Argeș Vintilă, who resigned after losing the title to CFR Cluj. Iordănescu is known for his tactical flexibility and his preference for attacking football. Some of the stars of FCSB are goalkeeper Andrei Vlad, who has been called up to the national team; defender Ovidiu Popescu, who is the vice-captain and the most versatile player of the team; midfielder Olimpiu Moruțan, who is the most talented and creative player of the team; winger Dennis Man, who is the top scorer and the most valuable player of the team; and striker Florin Tănase, who is the captain and the leader of the team.
The trophies and the controversies of FCSB
FCSB has won more trophies than any other club in Romania, but it has also been involved in more controversies than any other club in Romania. FCSB has won 26 Liga 1 titles, but it has also been accused of benefiting from biased refereeing and favoritism from the authorities. FCSB has won 23 Romanian Cups, but it has also been criticized for playing against weaker opponents and avoiding tough draws. FCSB has won 6 Romanian Supercups, but it has also been mocked for losing some of them to lower-ranked teams. FCSB has won 1 European Cup, but it has also been disputed by some fans and pundits who claim that Steaua București was a different club than FCSB. FCSB has also been involved in several scandals and conflicts with other clubs, such as Dinamo Bucharest, CFR Cluj, Universitatea Craiova, Viitorul Constanța, and FC Farul Constanța.
CFR Cluj: The dominant force in recent years
CFR Cluj is another club that has risen to prominence in Liga 1 in recent years. CFR Cluj was founded in 1907 as Kolozsvári Vasutas Sport Club (KVSC), and it represents the city of Cluj-Napoca, the second-largest city in Romania. CFR Cluj has won 7 Liga 1 titles, all of them since 2008. CFR Cluj has also won 5 Romanian Cups and 4 Romanian Supercups. CFR Cluj is also the most successful Romanian club in European competitions in recent years, having reached the group stage of the UEFA Champions League three times (2008-09, 2010-11, 2012-13) and the group stage of the UEFA Europa League six times (2009-10 , 2014-15, 2019-20, 2020-21, 2021-22). CFR Cluj plays its home games at the Dr. Constantin Rădulescu Stadium, which has a capacity of 23,500.
The president, the coach, and the veterans of CFR Cluj
CFR Cluj is owned by Neluțu Varga, a wealthy businessman who bought the club in 2012. Varga is known for his ambition and his investment in the club, but also for his interference and his impatience with the coaches and the players. The current coach of CFR Cluj is Marius Șumudică, a former Romanian international who played for Rapid București, Gaziantepspor, and Al-Shabab. Șumudică was appointed in October 2021, replacing Edward Iordănescu, who left for FCSB. Șumudică is known for his charismatic and controversial personality, as well as his pragmatic and defensive style of play. Some of the veterans of CFR Cluj are goalkeeper Cristian Bălgrădean, who has been with the club since 2018; defender Paulo Vinícius, who is the captain and the most capped player of the club; midfielder Ciprian Deac, who is the vice-captain and the most creative player of the club; winger Gabriel Debeljuh, who is the top scorer and the most dangerous player of the club; and striker Michael Pereira, who is a experienced and reliable forward who can score from any situation.
The titles and the European campaigns of CFR Cluj
CFR Cluj has won 7 Liga 1 titles, all of them in the last 14 years. CFR Cluj won its first title in 2007-08, under coach Ioan Andone, who led the club to a historic double of Liga 1 and Romanian Cup. CFR Cluj repeated the feat in 2009-10, under coach Andrea Mandorlini, who also guided the club to the group stage of the UEFA Champions League. CFR Cluj won its third title in 2011-12, under coach Ioan Andone again, who also took the club to the group stage of the UEFA Champions League again. CFR Cluj won its fourth title in 2017-18, under coach Dan Petrescu, who also led the club to the group stage of the UEFA Europa League. CFR Cluj won its fifth title in 2018-19, under coach Dan Petrescu again, who also helped the club to qualify for the group stage of the UEFA Europa League again. CFR Cluj won its sixth title in 2019-20, under coach Dan Petrescu again, who also secured the club's place in the group stage of the UEFA Europa League again. CFR Cluj won its seventh title in 2020-21, under coach Edward Iordănescu, who also achieved the club's best result in European competitions, reaching the round of 32 of the UEFA Europa League. CFR Cluj is currently third in Liga 1, two points behind FCSB and three points behind FC Farul Constanța. CFR Cluj is also in the group stage of the UEFA Europa League again, where it faces Napoli, Leicester City, and Spartak Moscow.
The future prospects and challenges of Liga 1
The potential of Liga 1 to produce talent and attract investment
Liga 1 has a lot of potential to become one of the best football leagues in Europe, as it has a large and passionate fan base, a rich and diverse football culture, and a talented and ambitious pool of players and coaches. Liga 1 has produced some of the best players in Romanian football history, such as Gheorghe Hagi, Gheorghe Popescu , Dan Petrescu, Adrian Mutu, Cristian Chivu, and Răzvan Raț. Liga 1 has also exported some of the best players in European football, such as Nicolae Stanciu, Dennis Man, Florinel Coman, Ianis Hagi, Răzvan Marin, and Ciprian Tătărușanu. Liga 1 has also attracted some of the best coaches in European football, such as Mircea Lucescu, Cosmin Olăroiu, Victor Pițurcă, Dan Petrescu, and Edward Iordănescu. Liga 1 has also received some of the best investments in European football, such as those from Gigi Becali, Neluțu Varga, Ioan Niculae, Gheorghe Hagi, and Ilie Dumitrescu. Liga 1 has the potential to produce more talent and attract more investment in the future, as it has a large pool of young and promising players and coaches, a competitive and unpredictable league format, and a growing and loyal fan base.
The problems of Liga 1 with corruption, violence, and infrastructure
However, Liga 1 also faces some serious challenges and problems that hinder its development and reputation. Liga 1 has been plagued by corruption scandals and allegations for decades, involving match-fixing, bribery, tax evasion, money laundering, and fraud. Liga 1 has also been marred by violence incidents and clashes between rival fans, players, coaches, and officials. Liga 1 has also been hampered by poor infrastructure and facilities, such as outdated and unsafe stadiums, pitches, and training grounds. These problems have affected the quality and the integrity of Liga 1, as well as its image and its appeal to the local and international audiences. Liga 1 needs to address these problems urgently and effectively, by implementing stricter rules and regulations, enforcing harsher sanctions and penalties, promoting fair play and sportsmanship, and investing in modernization and renovation.
The opportunities of Liga 1 to improve its competitiveness and reputation
Liga 1 has a lot of opportunities to improve its competitiveness and reputation in the European and global football scene. Liga 1 can benefit from the new format of the UEFA Champions League and the UEFA Europa Conference League, which will give more chances for the Romanian clubs to qualify and compete against the best teams in Europe. Liga 1 can also take advantage of the new media and technology platforms, such as streaming services, social media networks, and mobile applications, which will increase the exposure and the accessibility of the Romanian football to the wider audiences. Liga 1 can also leverage the new partnerships and collaborations with other football associations, leagues, clubs, sponsors, and stakeholders, which will enhance the cooperation and the exchange of knowledge and resources. Liga 1 can also capitalize on the new trends and innovations in football, such as data analysis , artificial intelligence, and virtual reality, which will improve the performance and the entertainment of the Romanian football. Liga 1 has a lot of potential and opportunities to improve its competitiveness and reputation, but it also needs to overcome its problems and challenges.
Liga 1 is the top football league in Romania, and one of the oldest and most prestigious football competitions in Europe. Liga 1 has a rich history and a passionate fan base, as well as a talented and ambitious pool of players and coaches. Liga 1 has produced some of the best players and teams in Romanian and European football, such as Gheorghe Hagi, Dan Petrescu, FCSB, and CFR Cluj. Liga 1 is also an exciting and competitive league to watch, as it offers a lot of surprises and unpredictability. However, Liga 1 also faces some serious problems and