Wednesday, September 12, 2012

No matter how good Vasas were, a general weakness of Hungarian football was still detectable: not only Vasas was unfit for a double, but the Cup went to entirely surprising team. Not even from Budapest! The Cup format was unusual as well: instead of traditional ½ finals and final, there was 4-team round robin final stage. At the end, Ferencvaros finished second-placed, one more indication that Fradi were not ready for real achievement. Above them finished DVTK.

DVTK hails from the city of Miskolc and its full name is a mouthful: “Diosgyori Vasgyarak Testgyakolro Kore” . It means “Diosgyor-Ironworks Sport Club”. As many Hungarian clubs, DVTK, or Diosgyor, as it is better known outside Hungary, is old club – founded in 1910 – and also as many other Hungarian clubs, it was working-class club. Actually, akin to the champions of the year, Vasas, founded in 1911 by members of the Hungarian Union of Iron Workers. In theory, workers clubs were to benefit once the country became 'workers paradise', but this is only theory. Unlike Vasas, DVTK was provincial club, remaining small and doomed – the fate of such clubs, no matter of the political structure, is to be robbed by the big clubs. DVTK, therefore, had modest history, dwelling in the lower regions of First Division, occasionally moving down to the Second. Success meant survival in the top league and until 1977 DVTK did not win anything. It was not expected to win this year either – they played their usual football in the championship, finishing 10th, with 7 points more than the relegated 17th finisher. The Cup was beyond their dreams as well: according to their coach, the whole ambition was to end among the last 8 clubs in the tournament. Once they advanced to the final round-robin stage, the idea of success was slightly modified: to give good fight to the big clubs, to die without shame, so to say. This was to be achieved by extra physical training. Eventually, the devil proved not to be all that scary, and DVTK managed to kill it – perhaps to their own surprise they finished first and the Cup was theirs. Their very first trophy ever! Such moments are great. May be the big clubs were not really strong, may be they were too arrogant – it doesn't matter: Diosgyor got the Cup.

Proud Cup winners. No players to speak of, but collective effort paid off. DVTK experienced their 'golden years' after 65 years of suffering. With Vasas champions, the season of 'ironworkers' was completed. With Videoton and Raba ETO steadily performing and DVTK winning the Cup, a change of status quo was detectable – the slow shift of power from Budapest to the industrial provincial towns. It came to full bloom in the first half of the 1980s, but the signs of challenge were already present.