Article by Marius Mărgărit, Aurelian Rotea – Published on Saturday, June 25, 2022, 10:25 / Updated on Saturday, June 25, 2022 11:52
In its 99 existence, Rapid represented a special story of Romanian football. He started from the bottom, being founded by a group of workers, he achieved great performances in the interwar period, he won the first title of champion only after 44 years, he struggled in mediocrity, he returned to the top of Romanian football, he went through a bankruptcy and reborn.
This is the summary of the 99 years of life of Rapid, a club attended by emblematic players of Romanian football and which has managed to gather throughout history a large number of fans, which it has maintained to this day. .
On June 25, when the Rapid team celebrates 99 years since its establishment, Gazeta presents a series of 5 legendary matches in the team’s history, reminiscent of the peak periods of cherries.
1. Rapid – Venus, the Romanian Cup final in 1940
He would quickly play in the final of the Romanian Cup in 1940 against Venus Bucharest, on May 1, 1940, before the Second World War reached Romania. The match was extremely important for both teams. Rapid wanted to take into account the 4th Cup won in a row, while Venus, the champion of that season and 8 times in total, wanted to win this trophy for the first time.
The match was expected by approximately 15,000 fans on the old ANEF stadium. Neither team managed to break away decisively on the table, and the score at the end of the 120 minutes was 2-2, being the first final in the history of the Cup that ended without any winner. As the tie-breaking rule was not imposed at that time, it was decided that the match be replayed on June 10.
This time, the two teams started like rifle, and after only 9 minutes he had already scored 3 times! Gavrilescu and Baratky gave Rapid the lead after Humis opened the scoring. In the 18th minute, the score was already 3-2 for Venus! Bodola increased the difference at the start of the second half, but the players from Giuleşti scored through Sipoș and Auer, leading the match in overtime. There was no scoring, 4-4 and another replay!
This time on Giulești, where the score of 1-1 was recorded at the end of the 90 minutes and 2-2 after extra time. A third replay was established, which would be the last. Baratky, a player who had scored in each of the previous games, opened the score in the 57th minute, and Gavrilescu increased the advantage of the “railroaders” in the 73rd minute.
Venus reduced the lead after 85 minutes to 3 – 0 as Eisenbeisser easily chipped the ball past the home side’s keeper after a dazzling play from the right. Rapid was declared the winner, at the end of 450 minutes that lasted for 4 games, played in an interval of almost 7 months!
In this 4th meeting, only luck made the difference, according to the Sports Gazette of that time, which wrote: “In the last edition of the final, yesterday on ANEF, without being inferior, Venus lost 2-1. The losers had a bar, and David could defend at least one goal “.
2. The match with Venus from the Romanian Cup, 1937-1938 season
Before the final in 1940, played in 4 acts, there was another story match in the Romanian Cup between Rapid and Venus, played this time in the semifinals. As Ioan Chirilă recorded in the pages of the volume “The Voice of the Train Wheels”, Rapid won 2-1, celebrating after the match as always at the Luther restaurant, located in the North Station area.
When leaving the bar, the football players from Giuleşti, Baratky, Auer, Rafinschi and Vintilă, were taken by the police van and taken to Gabriel Marinescu’s Prefecture, general, prefect of the Capital Police and president of the Venus Bucharest club, to check the documents.
On the front page of the May 18, 1938 edition, Gazeta Sporturilor appeared with an article informing that General Gabriel Marinescu sent a welcome to FRFA, contesting the match lost to Rapid, due to the atmosphere in which the match took place, but also the biased refereeing. borrowed from Gabriel Rusu.
This action of the Venus club led to the resignation of the “central” from the referees’ corps. Constantin Bauer, the president of Rapid at the time, found an ingenious solution to free the 4 players. He requested an audience with Gabriel Marinescu and requested the replay of the final. The “emperor”, as the president of Venus was nicknamed, agreed and let the “railroad” players go.
The match was replayed 6 days later, the difference being made by Baratky and Auer, who scored a “double”, and Rapid won again, this time 4-2, under the eyes of 15,000 spectators, qualifying in the Cup final, which he won.
Happy birthday and I love you, Quick! I intend to be here next year, when we are 100 years old. I have good eyelashes, my mother passed away at the age of 100, my older brother is 91. I wish the Rapids a long life only in League 1, not like us! We have a beautiful stadium, the world is with the boys, now there are some performances. Come on Rapid! Higher and higher!
– Rică Răducanu, former goalkeeper of Rapid
3. The return of the UEFA Cup with Napoli, in 1971
After a defeat in Italy, 0-1, He would soon receive those from Naples in Giulești in a UEFA Cup match, at the end of which the qualified team in the second round would be established. The newspapers of the time say that Rapid authoritatively controlled the match, in front of a Napoli that had caught the podium in Italy and that had legendary players in the group, such as Dino Zoff or Jose Altafini, nicknamed “Mazzola”.
Fortunately for Giulesti, the great striker was changed at the start of the match after a duel with Alexandru Boc, the episode being narrated by the former defender from Giulesti in an interview given to Gazeta Sportulor: “I did not intersect too often with Altafini. At a deep throw, at the start of the game, everyone looked at the ball, we forgot about us and we went head to head. We were both badly damaged. I broke my forehead, but continued to play with a large bandage on my head. But he was taken with a stretcher, he did not recover. I admit, that helped us a lot. Altafini was a fantastic peak at that time “.
The match was dominated from one end to the other by the cherries, who won 2-0 thanks to the goals scored by Liță Dumitru (min. 26) and Daniel Ene (min. 34), ensuring his qualification in the next round, where Rapid outscored the Poles from Legia Warsaw.
4. The 1967 Oil Match, which won the first title in history for Rapid
“Primvs Derby”, as the duel between Rapid and Petrolul was calledis one of the oldest and most beautiful rivalries in Romanian football, gaining momentum in the ’60s.
The two teams were in the fight for the championship in 1966, but Petrolul won the decisive match, played on March 31, in Ploiești, by a story goal scored by Virgil Dridea, directly from the corner, so that the joy of Giuleşti to celebrate the first title has been postponed. They met again a year later, on June 11, 1967, when Rapid is fighting for the title againbut this time with Dinamo.
Giulesti needed at least one equal to be sure of winning the first title in history. And Valentin Stănescu’s boys managed to draw 0-0 in Ploiești in front of the great rival, signing one of the most beautiful tabs in Rapid’s history. After the match, a general madness broke out, the Giulesti gallery returning on foot to Bucharest.
Happy birthday, Rapid! I hope to see you next year, on the centenary, even if I, with the problems I have with my feet, don’t think I will be able to come to Giulești. I watch all their matches, I like the new stadium, how the gallery plays, the team. We need some more players, I want to see more show on the grass, as is our tradition.
– Nichi Dumitriu, former Rapid striker
5. Rapid – Craiova, Cup final from 1975
Another remarkable match in the history of Rapid is the 1975 Cup finalwhen the people from Giuleşti managed to beat the great team of Craiova, winning their trophy due to an exceptional game managed by Nicolae Manea.
The popular sport wrote at the time that the victory of the people from Giuleşti was fully deserved, because the team from Grant had to play 3 finals in that edition, eliminating Steaua and Dinamo along the way. Oblemenco opened the scoring in the 54th minute, but in the 63rd minute, the Rapidistas were in numerical superiority, having 9 field players, with one more than the Oltenians.
Quoting from the chronicle of the same newspaper, “Rapid had the advantage of an increase in vigor and youth, easier to exploit in the conditions of creating wider spaces for action”. Giulesti took control of the game and returned the score through Manea, who managed two generic goals. First in the 70th minute, after an action on his own, and then in the 100th minute of extra time, with a formidable shot from an angle, which defeated the goalkeeper Purcaru, bringing the 9th Cup in history in Giulești.
I can’t even believe that Rapid has reached the age of 99! I wish him all the best in the world and to renew the series of performances, to become a force in Romanian football again, as it once was! The stadium is always full, the fans sing nonstop, come on Fast!
– Ion Motroc, former defender and coach of Rapid
Read more news about Rapid:
Show after midnight! How Rapid fans celebrated the 99th anniversary of the club’s founding
The unknown suffering of a Rapid owner: the headband hides a trauma!