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Strasbourg

Strasbourg is a football (soccer) club from France.

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About Strasbourg

Racing Club de Strasbourg (commonly known as RC Strasbourg, RCS or simply Strasbourg) is a football in France club founded in 1906 and professional since 1933, based in the city of Strasbourg, in Alsace. They currently play in the Championnat de France Amateurs 2, the fifth tier of Football in France, having been excluded from the Championnat National at the conclusion of the 2010–11 Championnat National season after going into financial liquidation. The team has been playing at the Stade de la Meinau since 1914.

The club is one of the six to win all three major French trophies: French football Division 1 1978-79, the Coupe de France in Coupe de France Final 1951, Coupe de France Final 1966, Coupe de France Final 2001 and the Coupe de la Ligue in Coupe de la Ligue Final 1997 and Coupe de la Ligue Final 2005. Strasbourg is among the six teams that have played more than 2000 games in France's top flight (56 seasons) and has taken part in 52 European games since 1961. Despite these accomplishments, the RCS has never really managed to lastingly establish itself as one of France's leading clubs, facing relegation at least once in every decade since the early 1950s. This recurring gap between high expectations and disappointing results has more than once led to instability and crises: Racing has changed its manager 52 times in 75 years of professional play, often under popular pressure.

The destiny of the RCS has always closely espoused the Alsace History. Like the region of which it emanates, Racing has changed three times of nationality in less than thirty years and has a troubled, passionate history. Founded in what was then a part of the German Empire, the club has from the beginning insisted on its Alsatian and popular roots, in opposition to the first Strasbourg-based clubs which were emanations of the German-born bourgeoisie. When Alsace went back to France in 1919, the club changed its appellation from "1. FC Neudorf" to the current "Racing club de Strasbourg" to imitate Pierre de Coubertin's Racing Club de France as a clear gesture of francophilia. Racing players went through World War II as most Alsatians did: evacuated in 1939, annexed in 1940 and striving to avoid nazification and incorporation in the Wehrmacht between 1942 and 1944. As Alsace was definitively returned to France, Racing's oppositional identity switched more towards Jacobin (politics), with for example emotional wins in the cup in 1951 and 1966 amidst Franco-Alsatian controversies. More recently, the club has been eager to promote its European vocation along with its strong local ties.

History


Foundation and early years (1906–1945)

On 10 June 1933, at the "Restaurant de la Bourse", the club made the jump to the professional ranks and thus joined the national championship established just a year before. RCS started competition in Ligue 2 but immediately earned promotion to the top flight at the end of the 1933–34 season, going through a pair of two-leg playoff matches, first against FC Mulhouse (0–0 and 3–1), and then against AS Saint-Étienne (2–0 and 4–4). Racing earned very decent results in the mid-1930s with a second place finish in 1934–35 and a third place finish the next season. In 1937, the club reached for the first time the final of the Coupe de France, losing to rivals FC Sochaux (Coupe de France Final 1937). This successful RCS team of the 1930s included two French internationals, Fritz Keller and Oscar Heisserer, as well as German striker Oskar Rohr who still holds the scoring record at Strasbourg.

With the outbreak of World War II, professional sport was suspended and Alsatians were evacuated in south-west France, especially in the Dordogne. During the Phoney War, a group of youngsters kept the club existing in Périgueux where they won the Dordogne championship in 1940. After the French defeat, Alsace was de facto annexed by the Third Reich and, in August 1940, the team took up play as "Rasensportclub Straßburg" in the Gauliga Elsaß, a top flight amateur division in German football. RCS captured their group in 1941 and participated in the regional finals, where they were put out by FC Mülhausen. The team earned second place results in each of the following two seasons and made an appearance in the opening round of the DFB Pokal (German Cup) in 1942. Starting in 1942, Alsatians were forcibly conscripted in the Wehrmacht and the Waffen SS and several club players—including Alsatian star Oscar Heisserer—fled or had their teammates deliberately wound them to avoid Malgré-nous. Oskar Rohr also had been imprisoned since 1940 after serving in the French Foreign Legion at the outbreak of the war. During a game against SS side "SG SS Straßburg", Rasensportclub players wore a uniform consisting of a blue jersey, white shorts and red socks as a clear display of French patriotism.

First national successes... and failures (1945–1976)

Allied armies retook Alsace in 1944 and the club quickly resumed play as "Racing Club de Strasbourg" in France's top flight. The team was then built around Oscar Heisserer—who became in April 1945 the first Alsatian to captain the national team—and Spanish defender Paco Mateo. In 1947, the Strasbourgeois reached for the second time the final of the cup at Colombes, this time losing to Lille OSC, Coupe de France Final 1947. They remained in first division competition until, at the end of the 1948–49 season, it appeared the side would be relegated. However, neighbouring club SR Colmar liquidated their professional team, leaving room for Strasbourg to stay up. In 1951, The Bleus won their first major trophy, defeating Valenciennes FC Coupe de France Final 1951 to finally bring the Coupe de France home. The significance of this victory went far beyond the sporting realm as Alsace was then shaken by the Oradour-sur-Glane massacre investigation. Fourteen Alsatians, most of them forcibly incorporated in the 2nd SS Panzer Division Das Reich division, had been charged with war crimes, a move that aroused considerable resentment in the region. Immediately after their return in Strasbourg, the players held a symbolical and emotional ceremony at the city's monument to the deaths.

Only one year later, Strasbourg was relegated following the worst ever season in the club's history. They were however back in the top flight after only one season in Division 2. In 1954–55, thanks to the arrival of Austria national football team star Ernst Stojaspal, Strasbourg had one of its best championship seasons in the post-war era, eventually ending with the 4th place. The club, however, was unable to build on this success and was relegated to Division 2 in 1957 and 1960, each time gaining immediate promotion back to the top flight. Image:Coupe1966-2.JPG During the 1960s, the club was able to participate in the Inter-Cities Fairs Cup thanks to the city's Foire européenne. In Inter-Cities Fairs Cup 1964-65 under Paul Frantz's guidance, Racing ousted giants AC Milan and FC Barcelona before falling in the quarter-finals against Manchester United. A year later, they repeated as cup winners beating champions FC Nantes in final by the score of Coupe de France Final 1966. On this occasion, captain René Hauss accomplished the remarkable feat of winning two cups with the same club with a 15 years-interval. Other key team members during this era included Raymond Kaelbel and young talents Gilbert Gress and Gérard Hausser. Again, Racing's triumph in the cup was not without controversy, reporter Thierry Roland said on live TV that "the cup was leaving France", a comment that was deemed offensive by many in Alsace.

In 1968, Racing started a process that would eventually lead to a merger with two other clubs, the "Association Sportive Culturelle de la Meinau" and, most importantly, the ASPV Strasbourg. The merger was effective in 1970 and the new entity was named "Le Racing Pierrots Strasbourg Meinau", or RPSM. The Pierrots were then a very successful amateur team – they won the national amateur championship in 1969 and 1970—but lacked sufficient structures to jump to professional play while Racing was more wealthy but in search for talent. The merger thus appeared as an excellent opportunity to build a powerful football club in Strasbourg and was favoured by business and political circles. However, the wedding was a difficult one with many internal struggles that were evidenced when some of the former Pierrots left the new entity as soon as 1971 to re-found their former club. That same year, the RPSM was relegated despite the arrival at the end of the season of Yugoslavian star Ivica Osim. As usual, Strasbourg then won immediate promotion with Osim and two French internationals in its ranks: Jean-Noël Huck and Marc Molitor. Back in division 1 in 1972, the club made one of the biggest transfer blunders in its history: Osim was sent to CS Sedan to leave a foreign player spot for Reinhard Libuda. The Yugoslavian left Strasbourg in tears but helped Sedan to decent results while Libuda was quickly suspended due to a match fixing scandal in Germany and eventually released in March 1973. In 1976, the club was again relegated and went back to its old identity as Racing Club de Strasbourg, reflecting the final failure of the RPSM merger.

Glorious years (1976–1980)

In 1976, the future seemed somewhat dark for Racing: the club had been relegated for the second time in only four years, was torn apart by internal struggles following the failure of the merger and was desperately seeking municipal subventions to reach a balanced budget. Financial difficulties meant that Racing was unable to retain or replace its best players (Huck, Molitor, Gress, Hausser, Spiegel) who left for other clubs or retired. This impossibility to buy on the transfer market meant that, for the first time, Strasbourg had to rely essentially on players out of its youth academy and local amateur clubs. Fortunately for the club, the mid-1970s saw the emergence of a very talented generation of youngsters consisting mainly of Léonard Specht, Jean-Jacques Marx, René Deutschmann, Yves Ehrlacher, Albert Gemmrich, Roland Wagner and Joël Tanter. Along with goalkeeper Dominique Dropsy and captain Jacky Duguépéroux, these players formed the backbone of the team for the superb 1976–1980 period. During these four years, Racing won two championships (D2 in 1977 and D1 in 1979), reached very honourable league rankings the two other years (third in 1978, fifth in 1980) and had its best results ever in European play (UEFA cup round of sixteen in 1979, UEFA Champions League quarter finals in 1980).

The start of the 1976–77 season was nevertheless difficult. In November, after a defeat at Amiens SC, Racing called Alexander Schwartz out of retirement to help and supervise the work of player-manager Heinz Schilcher. Schwartz was an important player of the 1930s team and had a renowned international coaching career behind him, especially with spells at Netherlands national football team and Benfica. Under his guidance, the team quickly improved, finishing ahead of it group to earn promotion to Ligue 1 and defeating AS Monaco for the Ligue 2 championship title, the first one in the club's history. After accomplishing his mission, Schwartz definitely retired and was replaced by Gilbert Gress. As a player, Gress had achieved iconic status with Racing supporters. A child of the Neudorf, he was a genial player with a strong personality, the first Frenchman to shine in the neighbouring Bundesliga (football) with VfB Stuttgart. His second return to Strasbourg, after a first comeback as a player, was greeted with enthusiasm and his charisma aroused a strong public interest for the team's performances, with attendance rates at an all-time high.

The 1977–78 season saw the peculiar dominance of the two promoted sides with Monaco going on to win the championship and Strasbourg reaching an unexpected third place, the best ranking since 1936. Gress printed his mark on the team right away, insisting on the recruitment of experienced, hard-working players (Jacky Novi, Raymond Domenech, Francis Piasecki) instead of foreign stars and putting into practice innovative tactical ideas. A self-proclaimed admirer of Ajax Amsterdam's total football, Gress wanted all his players to both defend and attack and asked for great versatility. This was rather unusual in French football at that time. In most French clubs, defenders were told not to cross the midfield line and strikers had almost no defensive duties. To the contrary, Gress instructed his forwards to exert immediate pressure on the other's side defenders and encouraged offensive initiatives by his own backs. A sign of versatility was the fact the side's top-scorer during that era, Albert Gemmrich, played on the left wing despite being right-footed. Gemmrich developed an ability to score with both feet after an injury that forced him to train using only his left foot and Gress used his peculiar profile to puzzle defenses, with great success.











Line-up for the 1979 title game at Lyon

For the 1978–79 season, Racing kept essentially the same team that had won promotion in 1977 and a third place in 1978. The only exceptions were the addition of midfielder Roger Jouve and the exchange between striker Jacques Vergnes and Chad national football team player Nabatingue Toko. A French international, Vergnes clashed with Gress due to his unwillingness to assume defensive duties and his vocal frustration after being regularly sidelined. He was quickly sent to Girondins de Bordeaux six games after the start the season. His replacement, Tonko, was the only foreign player on the squad that year, a fact that again was unusual since French club football was at that time still very dependent on the qualities of players from abroad. Strasbourg took the lead early in the season and did not give it back until the end in spite of widespread skepticism from national followers. The absence of big names in the team was considered by many to be a crippling handicap against established teams like AS Saint-Etienne or FC Nantes which had internationally renowned players. For his part, Gress used the critical review of the press to boost his player's motivation and insisted that "the star is the team". Racing finished atop the championship on 56 points with an undefeated home record. The return from Lyon, where the title game was played, was triumphant with huge crowds greeting the team at every railway station in Alsace before the arrival of the train at Strasbourg.

The club saw same movement during the 1979 inter-season. Chairman Alain Léopold was replaced by the influential André Bord, Duguépéroux ended his pro career and Gemmrich left for Bordeaux. To replace him, Bord imposed the recruitment of Carlos Bianchi to Gress. Bianchi was a prolific goalscorer but he was also a very traditional striker with no intention to commit to defense and teamplay, to Gress' despair. The season was marked by the return of internal struggles, especially with the increasingly confrontational relationship between Gress and Bord, but the team nevertheless achieved a fifth place finish and advanced to the quarter-finals of the European Cup 1979–80, where it was eliminated by Ajax Amsterdam (

Chronic instability (since 1980)

The Bleus success was short-lived. In September 1980, Gress was controversially sacked and, after several seasons of middling results, Racing was returned to second tier play in 1986. For the first time, Strasbourg failed to win immediate promotion back to the first tier, eventually ending with the 9th place in its group, the worst ranking ever for the club. Success however came back with the 1987–88 season as new manager Henryk Kasperczak led Racing to its second Division 2 title with players like Juan Simon, Peter Reichert and the returning Léonard Specht. Strasbourg, however, was unable to preserve its spot in the top-flight and was back in Ligue 2 in 1989. With Specht now a manager, Racing failed to secure promotion for the next two seasons, each time falling in the playoffs, first against OGC Nice and then again RC Lens. In 1991–92, Gress came back to his hometown as manager and, after defeating Stade Rennais FC (

In 1996, the Bosman ruling entered into force and made it difficult for French clubs to retain their best players. Strasbourg was no exception. During the summer, the team lost Mostovoi and its two French internationals—Marc Keller and Frank Leboeuf. Despite these departures, Racing fared well in the league, staying most of the season in the top 5 before ultimately settling for a 9th place finish. That same year, the IMG (business)–Mark McCormack Group was chosen by the municipality to take control of the club. The players, still trained by Jacky Duguépéroux, went on to capture the Coupe de la Ligue—the first national trophy in eighteen years—by defeating FC Girondins de Bordeaux Coupe de la Ligue Final 1997. A good UEFA Cup run followed that victory, allowing young players formed at the club like Olivier Dacourt or Valérien Ismaël to shine in continental play. After a successful qualification round against Rangers F.C. and Liverpool F.C, Racing defeated Internazionale Milano F.C.

In the meantime, IMG had taken over the club in the summer of 1997 and Patrick Proisy, former tennis player and head of the French branch, became president. He was joined a year later by his friend Claude Le Roy as manager. The Proisy–Leroy period at Racing was a troubled one with poor results, several scandals and a general disillusionment of the fans towards the club's management. Several suspicious transfers during that period have led Strasbourg's prosecutor to indict Proisy and Le Roy of misuse of company assets and forgery in 2006. During their reign, the club sold all of its best prospects and essentially replaced them with disappointing, expensive foreign players (Diego Hector Garay, Gonzalo Belloso, Mario Haas among others). In 2000–01, the club accomplished the paradoxical feat of being relegated after spending the whole season in the bottom three while winning the French cup with a Coupe de France Final 2001 against Amiens SC. On that occasion, Paraguay national football team star José Luis Chilavert scored the winning penalty for Strasbourg at the Stade de France.

In 2001–02, The club, led by manager Ivan Hasek, immediately re-took its place among the football elite in the Hexagon by finishing runners-up in Division 2. The year 2003 saw the departure of IMG and Proisy, to the fans' pleasure. The club was taken over by a pool of local investors with former player Marc Keller staying as director general. The new ownership focused on cleaning up the club's finances as well as re-gaining the hearts and minds of the Alsatian public. In 2005, Racing won their second domestic trophy in four years when they beat SM Caen Coupe de la Ligue Final 2005, a feat which provided them with a passport to the UEFA Cup 2005–06 where they reached the last sixteen.

In 2006, Strasbourg was again relegated after a poor season. The club was taken over by real estate investor Philippe Ginestet and celebrated its centennial in the fall of 2006 with various events including an exhibition and a friendly match against Olympique de Marseille. Ginestet hired French legend Jean-Pierre Papin as the new manager and the club again won immediate promotion to the top flight in 2007, finishing at third place. In spite of this, Papin resigned as manager, citing internal relationship problems. and was succeeded by Jean-Marc Furlan. Under Furlan, the RCS was unable to preserve its spot in Ligue 1, mainly due to eleven consecutive defeats at the end of the 2007–08 season, a record for post-World War II football in France. Furlan was nevertheless confirmed as manager for the following Ligue 2 season but failed in his mission to bring the club back in the top-tier as Racing ended 4th with a blasting defeat at Montpellier HSC. Furlan's contract was subsequently terminated and Phillipe Ginestet stepped down from his position as chairman while remaining the major shareholder. He was succeeded by Léonard Specht who picked the legendary Gilbert Gress as manager. However, Gress quickly entered in conflict with many members of the club, including Ginestet whom he violently attacked just after his side's defeat to LB Chateauroux in the inaugural league game. Ginestet then convened an extraordinary meeting of the board to sack Gilbert Gress, prompting Léonard Specht's resignation. Gress was replaced by assistant manager Pascal Janin, first as a caretaker and then as permanent manager when Ginestet re-took the club's presidency at the end of August 2009. In the 2009-2010 Season, a final day of the season away defeat relegated Strasbourg to the National as they suffered their second relegation in three seasons. The 2010-2011 season saw them narrowly miss out on promotion back to Ligue 2 as they finished 4th behind Guingamp. On July 17, 2011, Racing Club de Strasbourg entered total liquidation and were removed from the National in favour of AS Cherbourg. On 25 August 2011, after lengthy negotiations with the FFF, Strasbourg were eventually reinstated into the fifth tier of the French footballing, the CFA 2, Group C.

Colours and crest

While the colours of the town are red and white, Racing has always played in a combination of blue and white. The exact origin of this choice of colours is unknown. Over the years, the most common uniform has been composed of a medium blue jersey, white shorts and medium blue socks. However, during the last ten years the team has regularly switched between medium blue, dark blue, sky blue, and white as the main color of its home jersey. Since 2007, the Flag of Alsace is featured on the back of the club's shirt. Hummel International is the current kit designer. Previously (1973–2000; 2004–2007), Racing was equipped by Adidas, which has its French seat in Landersheim, between Strasbourg and Saverne. Asics also supplied the club (2000–03).

The current team crest has been in use—with interruptions—since 1976 and is generally considered as the most legitimate one. It includes a stylized stork (symbol of Alsace), a red diagonal stripe from the city's coat of arms and a depiction of the Strasbourg Cathedral along with the club's initials: RCS. Between 1997 and 2006, the club used another logo, introduced by Patrick Proisy. This crest was then considered to be more "modern" and was supposed to depict at the same time the Cathedral and a stork. The resemblance, however, was far from being obvious to everyone and the design was quickly derogatively nicknamed "Pac Man" due to some common traits with the famous video game. In 2006, the new management of the club, acceding to a supporter demand, re-installed the 1976 crest.

Stadium

Racing have been playing at the Stade de la Meinau in southern Strasbourg ever since 1914. The stadium hosted the 1938 World Cup and Euro 1984. Its maximum capacity was downsized from 45,000 to 29,000 during the 1990s to respect new safety standards.

La Meinau has been chosen among the 12 stadia composing France's bid for the organization of Euro 2016. Should France be awarded the tournament, its capacity would be upgraded to 36, 000.

Supporters

Racing's history has always been closely intertwined with local business and politics. In the 1930s, the club's jump to professionalism was sustained by car manufacturer Mathis (cars) who had his factory just in front of the stade de la Meinau. RCS quickly entered a rivalry with FC Sochaux, a team that was backed by Mathis' competitor Peugeot. After WW2, Mathis ceased activity and the club had to find other sponsors including the Crédit Mutuel—a large banking institution that has its roots in Alsace and appeared on the club's shirt throughout most of the 1960s and 1970s—as well as the town's municipality. In 1980, André Bord, a prominent local Gaullist politician and former minister during the Charles de Gaulle and Georges Pompidou presidencies, became chairman. Bord could boast his connections in business, political and artistic elites and vowed to make Racing a big name in French football. However, he quickly entered a confrontation with charismatic manager Gilbert Gress that culminated in September 1980 when the announcement of Gress' departure provoked crowd anger and riots scenes during a game against FC Nantes. The inability for the influential president and the talented manager to get along with each other and the 1980 trauma may explain why Racing was unable to perform lastingly at the top level after the 1979 title.

In 1986, Bord left the professional section and introduced fashion designer Daniel Hechter as his successor. Hechter had previously been banned from pro football following his involvement in the Paris Saint Germain secret funds scandal but was nevertheless able to re-take a president job at Strasbourg thanks to a sentence reduction. It was the first attempt to bring an outsider to the local context at the club's head, but the experiment ended in failure in 1990 as the club neared bankruptcy. Racing was at that time salvaged by the Strasbourg municipality which took a 49% share of the club but had to relinquish it a few years later as the Charles Pasqua legislation restricted public support to professional sport. In 1997, two projects were competing to buy the municipal share and effectively take control of the club. The first was led by then-president Roland Weller, a local businessman. The second bid was made by American IMG (business)- Mark McCormack Group through its French branch headed by Patrick Proisy. At that time, IMG was trying to develop its activities in European football and had failed the previous year in its effort to buy Olympique de Marseille. The American group presented an ambitious project with an entirely new youth academy as well as plans for a renovated stadium, eventually winning the competition for Racing's ownership for a price of 1.5 million euros. The club became a "Société Anonyme à Objet Sportif" and then a "Société Anonyme Sportive Professionnelle", a status very similar to the Société anonyme, albeit with restrictions like the impossibility to enter the stock market and the obligation to keep ties with the original association. Proisy became the chairman of the board with full control over the professional section but not the omni-sport structure that still possessed the club's name and its affiliation to the Fédération Française de Football. This was evidenced in 2002 when Proisy and Bord, still a chairman of the omni-sport, entered a dispute that led to the inability for the pro players to wear the name "Racing club de Strasbourg" on their jerseys for some time.

Proisy's reign at Strasbourg was fraught with misunderstandings, frustration and poor results on the pitch. The Alsatian public especially resented the fact that Proisy was unwilling to settle in Strasbourg, instead controlling the club's destiny from IMG's offices in Paris. Racing's troubles as well as the town's refusal to finance an extension of the stade de la Meinau to host World Cup 1998 provoked heated debate during the 2001 municipal election and eventually became part of the elements that drove to the defeat of Catherine Trautmann. In 2003, the club was bought back by a pool of local investors including Egon Gindorf who became chairman, Patrick Adler, Pierre Schmidt and Philippe Ginestet who all had been club sponsors during the IMG era. The new ownership bought the club for a symbolical euro to an IMG group eager to cut its losses after the death of Mark McCormack but had to cover a 3 million euro deficit to close the 2002–03 budget. After some speculation, the new owner was identified as Alain Fontenla, a French invetstment broker based in London. As of 2010, Fontenla owns (85%), along with Carousel Finance (15%) a holding named "Racing investissements", which itself owns a majority share (70%) of EuroRacing, the main shareholder (78%) of the club. The other major shareholder of the club is Lohr SA, an industrial group centered on transportation activities.

Presidential history

Below is a list of RC Strasbourg's 15 presidents since the start of the professional era in 1933. The president has not always been the real owner of the club. For example, between 1990 and 1997 the municipality was the major shareholder, but it chose to delegate the chairmanships to independent local entrepreneurs.

The 2009–2010 season saw a record of five successive presidents. Early into the season, Léonard Specht stepped down from his position, after the sacking of Glibert Gress, whom he had appointed as manager. Philippe Ginestet then re-took the presidency, but left the club when the takeover by the new owners was completed in December. The new owners chose to name Julien Fournier as the new Chief executive but, after some turmoil, Fournier quickly entered a dispute with the new major shareholder, Alain Fontenla. Fournier's contract was terminated in February and he was replaced by Luc Dayan on an interim basis. Only a month later, Jean-Claude Plessis, a former chairman of FC Sochaux came to replace Dayan.



, Group A. Pro players also often play for the reserves.




Former players


RCS does not have an official hall of fame or an all-time XI. Various selections have been made by press and supporters but none has achieved universal respect. 21 players have been capped for France while playing for Strasbourg. The most notable one is Oscar Heisserer who played a record 18 times with the national team while at Strasbourg and was the first Alsatian and first and only RCS player to wear the armband for France. Dominique Dropsy, Léonard Specht and Gérard Hausser also earned more than 10 caps while Marc Molitor is one of the rare examples of a player being capped for the national team while playing in the Division 2. Unsurprinsgly, it is during the 1978–1979 title season that Racing had the most players included in the national squad. On 7 October 1978 were a record four RCS players (Dominique Dropsy, Roger Jouve, Francis Piasecki, Albert Gemmrich) on the field for a Euro 1980 qualifying game against Luxembourg national football team. This figure was repeated a month later for a friendly against Spain national football team (Dropsy, Piasecki, Gemmrich and Léonard Specht). Frank Leboeuf and Marc Keller were the last RCS players to earn a cap during the 1995–1996 season. Leboeuf is one of the two former RCS in the French team that won World Cup 1998, the other one being Youri Djorkaeff. The last player once at Strasbourg to play for France is Olivier Dacourt while Richard Dutruel is the last international to play for RCS (both in 2004).

With regional feelings still strong in Alsace, the performances of local players logically attract special attention. Seven out of the ten players with the most apparitions for Racing are from Alsace: René Hauss (who holds the record), Léonard Specht, René Deutschmann, Edmond Haan, Gérard Hausser, Jean Schuth and Raymond Kaelbel. Since 1979, there is also a peculiar tradition that every Racing team to win a trophy or reach a final featured a Breton people as captain, manager or both. Jacky Duguépéroux captained the 1979 team and won the Coupe de la Ligue in 1997 and 2005 as a manager. The 2001 Coupe de France winning team for itself included Yvon Pouliquen as manager and Corentin Martins as captain. Pouliquen also was the captain for the 1995 final.

Apart from French internationals and Alsatians, there is a strong tradition to have foreign players from Central and Eastern Europe at Strasbourg. The successful Racing team of the 1930s regularly included Austrians both as players and coaches, a tradition that was continued when Ernst Stojaspal played at la Meinau in the 1950s. Other Mitteleuropa players fondly remembered include Alexander Schwartz, Ivica Osim, Ivan Hasek, Alexander Vencel (footballer born 1967) or Danijel Ljuboja while Russian Aleksandr Mostovoi is the last world-class star to play for Racing to this date.

Managers

Strasbourg has had 48 managers in the professional era, with the holder of the office changing 56 times. This is a record in French football only surpassed by Olympique de Marseille. Gilbert Gress holds the record for the longest-serving manager at the club, both for a single spell (39 months btw. 1977–80, 152 matches) and overall (75 months in three spells, 275 matches). Paul Frantz holds the record for the most spells at Racing with four (73 months overall, 227 matches). Jacky Duguépéroux is the only manager to win two trophies with Strasbourg.

The current manager is Pascal Janin, who has occupied virtually every coaching position at the club (youth coach, reserves coach, goalkeeping coach, assistant-manager) before being appointed as Gress' successor.

Current coaching staff

{ champions (1): French football Division 1 1978-79
- Ligue 2 champions (2): 1977, 1988
- Ligue 2 promotion: 1934, 1953, 1958, 1961, 1972, 1992, 2002, 2007
- Alsace champions (3): 1923, 1924, 1926
- Dordogne champions (1): 1940

Cups

- Coupe de France winners (3): Coupe de France Final 1951, Coupe de France Final 1966, Coupe de France Final 2001
- Coupe de la Ligue winners (2): Coupe de la Ligue Final 1997, Coupe de la Ligue Final 2005
- UEFA Intertoto Cup winners (1): UEFA Intertoto Cup 1995

Records

- Largest victory: 10–0 (v. Valenciennes FC 1937–38)
- Largest defeat: 0–8 (v. Limoges FC, 1959–60)
- Largest victory in European play: 5–0 (v. Grazer AK, 2005–06)
- Largest defeat in European play: 2–10 (v. MTK Budapest, 1961–62)
- Record appearances: René Hauss (580; 421 in Ligue 1; between 1949 and 1969)
- Record appearances for a player still active at the club: Guillaume Lacour (212; 134 in Ligue 1; since 2002)
- Most appearances in a row for the club: Dominique Dropsy (336; between 1973 and 1982)
- Most goals for the club: Oskar Rohr (118; between 1934 and 1939)
- Most goals for a single championship season at the club: Oskar Rohr (30; 1936–37)
- Most goals for the club by a player still active: Danijel Ljuboja (34; between 2000 and 2003)
- Most goals for the club by a player still active at the club: James Fanchone (12; since 2007)
- Oldest player: René Hauss (39 years, 351 days; v. FC Nantes; 11 December 1966)
- Youngest player: Jacques Glassmann (16 years, 95 days v. FC Nantes, 25 November 1978)
- Record Attendance: 39033, 20 November 1992, v. Olympique Marseille
- Highest transfer fee paid: 5.3 million euros (to Sturm Graz for Mario Haas in 1999)
- Highest transfer fee received: 8.8 million euros (from Olympique Lyonnais, for Peguy Luyindula in 2001)
- UEFA ranking:
- - 80 = (80) Levski Sofia (24.250)
- - 81 Image:Sub on.svg (105) AS Nancy Lorraine (24.090)
- - 82 Image:Sub on.svg (85) RC Strasbourg (23.090)
- - 83 Image:Sub on.svg (94) FK Partizan (23.050)
- - 83 Image:Sub on.svg (84) Slavia Praha (23.050)




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