Franciszek Smuda

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Franciszek Smuda
Franciszek Smuda 1.jpg
Personal information
Date of birth (1948-06-22) 22 June 1948 (age 70)
Place of birth Lubomia, Poland
Playing position Defender
Youth career
1962–1967 Unia Racibórz
Senior career*
1967–1969 Odra Wodzisław Śląski
1970 Ruch Chorzów
1970–1971 Stal Mielec
1971–1974 Piast Gliwice
1975 Vistula Garfield
1975 Hartford Bicentennials 20 (3)
1975–1977 Legia Warsaw 33 (0)
1978 Los Angeles Aztecs 10 (0)
1978 Oakland Stompers 13 (0)
1978 San Jose Earthquakes 2 (0)
1979–1982 SpVgg Fürth 17 (1)
1982 VfR Coburg
Teams managed
1983 VfR Coburg
1984–1987 ASV Forth
1988 FC Herzogenaurach
1989 Altay S.K.
1992 Konyaspor
1993 FV Wendelstein
1993–1995 Stal Mielec
1995–1998 Widzew Łódź
1998–1999 Wisła Kraków
1999–2001 Legia Warsaw
2001–2002 Wisła Kraków
2002 Widzew Łódź
2003 Piotrcovia Piotrków Trybunalski
2003 Widzew Łódź
2004 Widzew Łódź
2004 Omonia
2004–2005 Odra Wodzisław Śląski
2005–2006 Zagłębie Lubin
2006–2009 Lech Poznań
2009 Zagłębie Lubin
2009–2012 Poland
2013 SSV Jahn Regensburg
2013–2015 Wisła Kraków
2016–2017 Górnik Łęczna
2017–2018 Widzew Łódź
2018–2019 Górnik Łęczna
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

Franciszek Smuda (Polish pronunciation:  [franˈt͡ɕiʂɛk ˈsmuda] , born 22 June 1948) is a Polish [1] football coach and former footballer who also holds a German passport. As a player, he spent his career playing for clubs in Poland, the United States and Germany. In 1983, he turned to coaching, becoming the manager of Widzew Łódź, Wisła Kraków, Legia Warsaw and Lech Poznań, among others. He has won three Polish league titles. Since 2009 he was the manager of the Poland national football team, [2] but resigned on 16 June 2012, following their elimination from Euro 2012. [3]

Poland Republic in Central Europe

Poland, officially the Republic of Poland, is a country located in Central Europe. It is divided into 16 administrative subdivisions, covering an area of 312,696 square kilometres (120,733 sq mi), and has a largely temperate seasonal climate. With a population of approximately 38.5 million people, Poland is the sixth most populous member state of the European Union. Poland's capital and largest metropolis is Warsaw. Other major cities include Kraków, Łódź, Wrocław, Poznań, Gdańsk, and Szczecin.

Association football Team field sport

Association football, more commonly known as football or soccer, is a team sport played with a spherical ball between two teams of eleven players. It is played by 250 million players in over 200 countries and dependencies, making it the world's most popular sport. The game is played on a rectangular field called a pitch with a goal at each end. The object of the game is to score by moving the ball beyond the goal line into the opposing goal.

Coach (sport) person involved in directing, instructing and training sportspeople

In sports, a coach is a person involved in the direction, instruction and training of the operations of a sports team or of individual sportspeople. A coach may also be a teacher.


Early life

Smuda was born in Lubomia, Wodzisław County, Poland, as a son of Gerard, a railway worker, and Marta. [4]

Lubomia Village in Silesian, Poland

Lubomia is a village and the seat of Gmina Lubomia, Wodzisław County, Silesian Voivodeship, southern Poland. It has a population of about 3,600. It lies approximately 12 kilometres (7 mi) west of Wodzisław Śląski and 56 km (35 mi) south-west of the regional capital Katowice.

Wodzisław County County in Silesian, Poland

Wodzisław County is a unit of territorial administration and local government (powiat) in Silesian Voivodeship, southern Poland, on the Czech border. It came into being on January 1, 1999, as a result of the Polish local government reforms passed in 1998. Its administrative seat and largest town is Wodzisław Śląski, which lies 49 kilometres (30 mi) south-west of the regional capital Katowice. The county contains three other towns: Rydułtowy, 7 km (4 mi) north of Wodzisław Śląski, Radlin, 4 km (2 mi) north-east of Wodzisław Śląski, and Pszów, 7 km (4 mi) north-west of Wodzisław Śląski.

Playing career

As a player, he played as a defender. [1] He began his career at Unia Racibórz and later played for Odra Wodzisław Śląski. He got his debut in the Ekstraklasa playing for Stal Mielec during the 1970–71 season. He also played for Piast Gliwice, followed by a short spell at Vistula Garfield in the USA. He also participated in the NASL Hartford Bi-Centennials. In 1975 Smuda returned to Poland to play for Legia Warsaw. [4] In 1978, he returned to the USA again to play for three other NASL clubs. [5] He finished his career as a player in Germany then shortly after becoming a manager.

In the sport of association football, a defender is an outfield player whose primary role is to prevent the opposing team from scoring goals.

The Ekstraklasa, named Lotto Ekstraklasa since the 2016–17 season due to its sponsorship by Lotto, is the top Polish professional league for men's association football teams. The winner of the Ekstraklasa claims the Polish national championship. Contested by 16 clubs, operating a system of promotion and relegation with the I liga, seasons start in July, and end in May or June the following year. Teams play a total of 37 games each, totalling 296 matches in the season. Games are played on Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays and Mondays. The winner of the Ekstraklasa qualifies for the Polish SuperCup. The Ekstraklasa is now operated by the Ekstraklasa SA.

Stal Mielec association football club

Stal Mielec is a Polish football club based in Mielec, Poland. The club was established on April 10, 1939. Historically, the club has enjoyed great successes within Poland's Ekstraklasa Premier League, winning the title twice but has undergone significant management changes and financial difficulties within the past two decades that have forced the club from participation in the Premier League. After winning the Polish third-tier league title in 2016, Stal Mielec was promoted to I Liga, the second-tier league.

Coaching career

He began his coaching career successfully in the lower leagues in Germany. During the late 1980s, he was appointed as a manager in Turkey. He coached Altay Izmir and Konyaspor for a total of four years. In 1993, Smuda returned to Poland to help save Stal Mielec from relegation. During the seasons in Mielec, he managed to maintain the team in the Ekstraklasa.

Konyaspor sports club club in Turkey

Konyaspor Kulübü is a professional Turkish sports club based in Konya, Turkey. They are better known as Konyaspor or Atiker Konyaspor due to sponsorship reasons. In 1922 Konyaspor were founded with the name Konya Gençlerbirliği and have played at their current home ground, Konya Büyükşehir Stadium, since 2014. Konyaspor currently play in the Süper Lig, the top tier of Turkish football. The club colours are green and white.

Widzew Łódź

In May 1995, he was appointed as the manager of Widzew Łódź and finished in second place behind Legia Warsaw in the 1994–95 season. The following season, Smuda managed not losing a single game in the league. The 1995–96 season was another successful one with Widzew's Marek Koniarek scoring the most goals in the league at 29. Widzew qualified for the UEFA Champions League competition for the 1996–97 season. Smuda managed the team to eliminate the Danish champions, Brøndby IF and advanced to the Group Stage. Widzew were drawn into a group containing Atlético Madrid, Borussia Dortmund and Steaua Bucharest. Widzew finished the group in third place. The team from Łódź were able to repeat their feat of winning the Ekstraklasa again. The next season was not as promising as Widzew's management sold some of their key players and were eliminated in the qualifying phases of the Champions League. Widzew finished in 4th place that year and were unable to qualify for any European competitions. Shortly thereafter, Smuda moved to Wisła Kraków where he had much success.

Widzew Łódź Polish association football club

RTS Widzew Łódź is a Polish football club based in Łódź. The club was founded in 1922 but traces its roots to TMRF Widzew founded in 1910, referring to the Widzew-district of Łódź. Its official colours are red and white, hence their nicknames Czerwona Armia and Czerwono-biało-czerwoni (Red-white-reds).

UEFA Champions League European association football tournament

The UEFA Champions League is an annual club football competition organised by the Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) and contested by top-division European clubs, deciding the best team in Europe. It is one of the most prestigious tournaments in the world and the most prestigious club competition in European football, played by the national league champions of the strongest UEFA national associations.

Brøndby IF association football club in Denmark

Brøndby IF is a Danish football club based in Brøndbyvester, Brøndby, on the western outskirts of Copenhagen. The club is also known as Brøndbyernes Idrætsforening, or Brøndby and BIF for short. The club was founded in 1964 as a merger between two local clubs and was promoted to the Danish top-flight football league in 1981.

Wisła Kraków

Smuda was appointed as the manager of Wisła Kraków after the 1997–98 season. His goal was to build a team that would be not only be successful in Poland but also in European cups. Smuda won the Polish League the following season, however, Wisła was ejected from European tournaments due to a fan throwing a knife at Dino Baggio during a UEFA Cup match against Parma F.C. In September 1999, Smuda was dismissed as manager of Wisła after team's first defeat in the 1997–98 season.

Wisła Kraków association football club in Poland

Wisła Kraków is a Polish football club based in Kraków. Wisła play in the Ekstraklasa, the top level of the Polish football league system. Wisła is one of the oldest and most successful Polish football clubs. It ranks third in the number of national titles won (13), behind Górnik Zabrze and Ruch Chorzów (14), and second in all-time victories. Wisła was founded in 1906 under the name TS Wisła.

Dino Baggio Italian footballer

Dino Baggio is an Italian former professional footballer who played as a defensive midfielder.

Legia Warsaw

After leaving Wisła in September 1999, Smuda was hired as manager of Legia Warsaw replacing Dariusz Kubicki. However, he did not win any trophies, nor qualify for any European competitions. After a 0–4 defeat by Zagłębie Lubin in March 2001, Smuda was sacked.

Return to Wisła Kraków

In June 2001, Smuda was re-hired as a coach of Ekstraklasa champions Wisła Kraków. He failed to defeat FC Barcelona in the third qualifying round of the UEFA Champions League. After losing two league matches to Polonia Warsaw and Legia Warsaw in March 2002, he was replaced by Henryk Kasperczak.

Other clubs (2002–2004)

Subsequently, Smuda managed Widzew Łódź, Piotrcovia Piotrków Trybunalski as well as the Cypriot team Omonia.

Odra Wodzisław

Since 2004 he has been coaching Odra Wodzisław, it was a return to his homeland. Smuda successfully helped the side stave off relegation. A year later he finished third in the league with Zagłębie Lubin earning a spot in the UEFA Cup for the 2006–07 season.

Lech Poznań

In May 2006, Smuda was hired as the manager of Lech Poznań following the club's merger with Amica Wronki. He led the club to a sixth-place finish in the 2006–07 season and fourth the following season. He also qualified for 2008–09 UEFA Cup Round of 32 with Lech Poznań. In 2008–09 Ekstraklasa season, Lech Poznań managed to reach the top of the league table by the winter break, but a series of draws during the spring round resulted in a third-place finish at the end of the season. His contract with the club was not extended.

Zagłębie Lubin

After several seasons with Lech Poznań, he returned to Zagłębie Lubin in September 2009.

Poland national football team

On 29 October 2009, he was chosen as the new manager of the Poland national football team. [2] [6] After a disappointing UEFA Euro 2012 tournament in which the Poland national football team finished last in their group below Russia, Greece & Czech Republic, Franciszek Smuda left his post as manager directly after the final defeat of the campaign. [3]



Widzew Łódź
Wisła Kraków
Zagłębie Lubin
Lech Poznań

Personal life

Smuda is married to Małgorzata. [9]

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  1. 1 2 "Franciszek Smuda competition coaching record". UEFA . Retrieved 31 May 2013.
  2. 1 2 "Smuda lands 'dream' Poland job". 29 October 2009. Retrieved 31 May 2013.
  3. 1 2 "Smuda quits after Poland exit". 16 June 2012. Retrieved 16 June 2012.
  4. 1 2 "Smuda, Franciszek" (in Polish). Retrieved 31 May 2013.
  5. "Franz Smuda". Dave Morrison. Retrieved 8 April 2009.
  6. "Smuda trenerem reprezentacji!". Gazeta Wyborcza (in Polish). 29 October 2009. Retrieved 29 October 2009.
  7. "Historia Klubu". Retrieved 2 July 2013.
  8. "Smuda oficjalnie żegna się z Lechem". Retrieved 2 July 2013.
  9. "Smuda: Frankowski trenerem – to mój pomysł" (in Polish). 21 October 2010. Retrieved 31 May 2013.