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MSK Zilina

MSK Zilina is a football (soccer) club from Slovakia.

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About MSK Zilina

MŠK Žilina is a Slovakia football (soccer) club, based in the town of Žilina and is one of the most successful teams in Slovak top division (since 1993). The club supporters are nicknamed Šošoni which translates as Shoshone in English and plays its home games at Stadium Pod Dubňom.


Early years

The club was founded towards the end of 1908 under the Hungarian name Zsolnai Testgyakorlók Köre. Group of football and tennis pioneers residing in the town along with local merchants, workers from drapery factories and students played important roles in the foundation of the club. After lengthy preparations, the club was officially registered on June 20, 1909. In 1928 and 1929, the club won Slovakian championship twice and was among the most notable teams in Slovakia for almost two decades.

Czechoslovak League

In total, Žilina played 31 seasons in the Top Division of the Czechoslovak League spanning from 1925 to 1993. Remarkable remains 1945-46 season as they clinched the third place, only adrift of the likes of Sparta Prague and Slavia Prague. As a mark of honour to the best Slovak team in this competition ŠK Žilina was named 'Unofficial Slovak Champion'.

Many consider 1961 a milestone in club's history. Firstly, the team reached the final of the National Cup, where they lost to Dukla Prague, the eventual Czechoslovak champion. Despite the defeat, for the first time in history a club then known as Dynamo Žilina broke into Europe to contest in the UEFA Cup Winners' Cup. Notable 3-2 and 1-0 victories over Olympiacos F.C. moved them in quarter-finals, however ambitious Slovak team was ultimately knocked out by a previous year winner ACF Fiorentina. Although Žilina grabbed a promising 3-2 victory at home, Fiorentina proved to be too strong and went through by winning second leg 2-0.

In late sixties the club was renamed TJ ZVL Žilina and had participated in Intertoto Cup for several more years, winning the group in 1969 and came 2nd a year later. A notable 1973-74 season saw them to reach the final of Mitropa Cup but suffered defeat from Tatabányai Bányász 5-2 on aggregate. Between 1972-74, they finished fifth in First Division of Czechoslovak League three years running, followed by relegation to Second Division in 1978-79 season. The club bounced back to First Division in 1982-83 and finished second in Mitropa Cup in the same season that turned out to be the last notable achievement before winning the title two decades later.

New era - Slovak League

Following dissolution of Czechoslovakia in 1993, MŠK Žilina has been a regular participant in the Slovak Superliga with the exception of 1995-96 season after relegation to the Second Division. Žilina have played 15 seasons in a top flight since its foundation in 1993 and come top in all-time Slovak table that makes them one of the most dominant teams in domestic league.

After lengthy two decades since the last European contest the club qualified for the Intertoto Cup in 1997 and 1999, however with no success on either occasion.

Significantly, in the autumn of 2000, former Czechoslovakian defender Ladislav Jurkemik joined the club as a new manager and under his guidance the team became renowned for its winning mentality. After his departure halfway through the 2001-02 season to become a manager of the Slovak national team the club appointed Czech coach Leoš Kalvoda who cruised the team to their first title to clinch it four rounds before the end of season.

In the Slovak Superliga 2002-03, now under the management of Milan Lešický, the club succeeded in retaining its national championship. Prolific striker and team captain Marek Mintal scored the winning goal in a cracking style against their only contender in a title race Slovan Bratislava, which was his last game for the recrowned Slovak champion before his move to 1. FC Nuremberg.

After Slovan Bratislava, MŠK Žilina became only the second club to win three Slovakian titles.
Ladislav Jurkemik, who was reappointed as a manager during the Slovak Superliga 2003-04 in favour of his sacked predecessors Milan Lešický a Juraj Šimurka, led the defending champions to 10 priceless consecutive victories to be enough to clinch the third successive title though narrowly on a goal difference.

The team's performances in next two seasons faded while they lacked the quality they had been famous for during their winning campaigns. In pursuit of silverware numerous players were signed over next two years. In the span of only fourteen months, three managers; the reputable Karol Pecze, his successor Milan Nemec and eventually Marijan Vlak were in charge over the team. Since the results and performances never met the expectations, Vlak ended his reign immediately at the end of 2005-06 season after they failed to reach UEFA Cup spot only to finish fourth.

Unforgettable Slovak Superliga 2006-07 will be remembered amongst the supporters for many years to come. MŠK Žilina won the fourth title in six years showing a superb display during the entire campaign while having scored astonishing 99 goals. Well deserved credit to a new appointed manager Pavel Vrba whose renowned tactics complemented with several new signings brought a desired recipe for success. The team dominated throughout the entire season performing an enjoyable attacking football that was applauded all across the country.

An arch rivalry between Slovak and Czech teams since the split up escalated when MŠK Žilina were tied with Slavia Prague in the second qualifying round of Champions League 2007-08 . Disappointingly, they were knocked out by Czech champions on penalties after two goalless draws.

Ironically, despite two victorious qualifying rounds of UEFA Cup 2008-09, the board made a controversial decision to part a company with Pavel Vrba due to inconsistency in the team's form in domestic league, leaving most supporters in a dismay.
However, seemingly gambling step to appoint Dusan Radolsky prior to the crucial second leg in Sofia came to fruition immediately. In a triumphant night, the Slovak side made it through when they managed to beat Levski 1-0 away and historically earned a spot in UEFA Cup 2008–09 group stage. The club was drawn to play in Group F alongside Hamburger SV, AFC Ajax, Slavia Prague and Aston Villa. They were the lowest ranked side of all 40 clubs in this stage of competition. Although they famously beat Aston Villa UEFA Cup 2008-09 group stage Aston Villa v .C5.BDilina at Villa Park in their last group game, the club finished fourth and did not advance to the knockout stages of the competition.

One of the club's most notable players of the modern time is Marek Mintál, the captain and top scorer in club's two consecutive winning seasons 2001-02 and 2002-03 netting 21 and 20 goals respectively who currently plays for 1. FC Nuremberg.

Events timeline

- 1909 - Founded as ZsTK Zsolna
- 1910 - Renamed ZsTS Zsolna
- 1919 - Renamed SK Žilina
- 1948 - Renamed Sokol Slovena Žilina
- 1953 - Renamed Jiskra Slovena Žilina
- 1956 - Renamed DSO Dynamo Žilina
- 1961 - First European qualification, UEFA Cup Winners' Cup 1961-62
- 1963 - Renamed Jednota Žilina
- 1967 - Renamed TJ ZVL Žilina
- 1990 - Renamed ŠK Žilina
- 1995 - Renamed MŠK Žilina


Stadium Pod Dubňom is an all-seater football stadium situated in Žilina, Slovakia, which has been the home of MŠK Žilina. It is named after the hill Dubeň adjacent to which is located and literally means "Stadium under the Duben Hill".

The original stadium was built in 1941 although the ground had been in use since club's foundation in 1909 . As of 2002, predominantly due to UEFA requirements, the club proposed an extensive renovation of the stadium, which has since been in constant process of redevelopment.

Current stadium consists of four separate stands and has recently been expanded (as of 2007), with major redevelopment on West Stand (new hospitality boxes, increased capacity, supporting pillars removed), including alterations on the North Stand (River Side - Kop) and South Stand (Railway Side - Away Supporters, Family Zone), as to extra tiers added all of which have been covered. Outward facing wall on North Stand is yet to be completed.

At the end of 2007-08 campaign the East Stand has been closed down as a further part of ongoing reconstruction. The stand was reopened prior to 2009-10 campaign and is nearing completion with some minor interior work to be finished. A current capacity is 11,181 seats with the prospect of future expansion to hold a crowd of up to 15,000 spectators.



- Corgoň Liga (Slovakian Top Division) (1993 - present)
- - Winners (4): Corgoň Liga 2002, Corgoň Liga 2003, Corgoň Liga 2004, Corgoň Liga 2007
- - Runners-up (3): Corgoň Liga 2005, Corgoň Liga 2008, 2009

- Corgoň Liga (Slovakian League) (1925 - 1933)
- - Winners (2): 1928, 1929

- Slovakian Super Cup (Slovakian Super Cup)
- - Winners (3): 2003, 2004, 2007


- UEFA Cup Winners' Cup
- - Quarter-Final (1): 1961

- Mitropa Cup
- - Runners-up (2): 1974, 1983

As of 12 August 2009

Notable Players

- Stanislav Griga
- Viliam Hýravý
- Anton Krásnohorský
- Vladimír Kinier
- Dušan Kuciak
- Branislav Labant
- Vladimír Labant
- Marek Mintál

- Alexander Horváth
- Ladislav Molnár
- Peter Pekarík
- Štefan Priboj
- Ľubomír Reiter
- Branislav Rzeszoto
- Stanislav Šesták
- Radoslav Zabavník

Notable Managers

- Štefan Jačiansky
- Ladislav Jurkemik
- Leoš Kalvoda
- Milan Lešický
- Jozef Marko
- Pavel Vrba

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