Górnik Zabrze-As Roma 15.04.1970.
Górnik Zabrze-As Roma 15.04.1970.

Recalling a Golden Era for the Miners

When all neighbours gathered around the television

The history of sports often lies deep in the hearts of fans, bringing not only emotions, but also inspiring dreams and triumphs. Among such stories, the legend of Górnik Zabrze remains unforgettable. The club that experienced its golden period in the 1960s and 1970s, winning the hearts of fans and making its mark on the history of Polish soccer.

Times of domination

The story of Górnik Zabrze begins in 1948 when the club was founded as “Górnik” (miner in Polish)  by a group of sports enthusiasts from Zabrze. From then on, the team grew, becoming one of the most renowned football clubs in Poland. The 1960s and 1970s was the time when Górnik Zabrze’s star shined the brightest. The club achieved impressive successes, winning the Polish Cup 6 times, including the remarkable achievement of 5 triumphs in a row and as many as 14 times the Polish Champion title. These victories were a symbol of dominance in those days. The Polish Cup appeared in the club’s showcase in 1965 and 1968-1972, while the Polish Champion title shone in 1957, 1959, 1961, 1967, 1971-1972 and 1985-1988.

To conquer Europe

The activities of Górnik Zabrze are not only domestic successes but also countless struggles in the international arena, which are still unforgettable for the club’s fans. The successive appearances of Zabrze team in the European Cup in the years 1965-1968 were moments full of dramatic duels that stirred emotions in the stadiums of all Europe. However, the greatest success of Górnik Zabrze remains the promotion to the finals of the Cup Winners’ Cup in the 1969/1970 season. The club went down in history as the only Polish team to reach the finals of this European competition. The confrontation with Manchester City on Vienna’s Prater in torrential rain ended in defeat, but the event remains unforgettable. The Zabrze team succumbed to the English, but remained in the hearts of fans as a symbol of Polish courage in the European arena.

Timeless inspiration

The story of Górnik Zabrze transcends sport. It is not only a story about the successes of one of the best football clubs from Silesia. It is also an amazing story about the times of communism in Poland. When many people lacked basic material goods: household utensils, food, sweets or even toilet paper. In those difficult political and social times, the club’s successes were a break from everyday life, bringing people together and giving them a reason to enjoy. Watching matches together integrated the neighbours because not everyone had a TV set at that time. For these reasons, the history of Górnik Zabrze still evokes positive emotions, giving hope and motivation to young people, showing that perseverance and work lead to success.

Thinking points

Through its successes and inspiring history, Górnik Zabrze not only remains a part of Polish soccer’s legacy, but also symbolizes determination, cooperation and strength, conveying values that are timeless and universal.

  • How does sport provide people with a break from gray, everyday life?
  • How are golden periods of clubs recalled in the present?

Find out more

You can find more information about Górnik Zabrze on the fan page Roosevelta 81 or the official club website.

Historical footage can be accessed on YouTube here and here. We also recommend the book written by Paweł Czado “Story of the Golden Years”.

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Górnik Zabrze-As Roma 15.04.1970.
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A portrait of Eryk Tatuś, 1934. Public domain, From: National Digital Archives.
Eryk Tatuś
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