From the 24th to the 26th of June 2016 we organized the fourth annual UAFA CUP in Trenčín, together with Ultras Trenčín and Legia Laugarício. A lot of things happened during this weekend and got a lot of positive experiences and lessons from. This is our look back at that weekend (more than half a year later).
The preparations for UAFA CUP 2016 began in fall of 2015 and a lot of people invested their time and energy into the work. Even before the tournament began, the work began to pay off. Interest was so big that we had to increase the number of participating teams from the planned 24 to. Teams from all over Slovakia, from the home town of Trenčín and the surrounding region, Bratislava, Žilina to Košice and Prešov arrive. We also welcomed participants from Prague, Zagreb, Minsk and Grodno in Belarus and from Liége in Belgium.
The program began on Friday evening, an outdoor concert of the bands Rúbanisko and Fajront on an island on the river Váh. The island was filled with the sounds of different languages, fast-paced punk and flames flares mirrored off the river. This pleasant evening by the Váh was a great way to open the evening program.
People started flowing into the Na Sihoti stadium at 8:00 on Saturday morning. The football tournament started at 9:00 on the main pitch and lasted until the evening. We are very happy that there was such interested in the tournament, thanks to mixed and female teams, guests from other countries and people from all over Slovakia and the Czech Republic, who took part in UAFA CUP. The victory went all the way to Belarus, thanks to the success of the team Grodno Punx Crew. We want to congratulate them once again and we hope that we will welcome them and other participants of UAFA CUP 2016 this year as well.
The program at the stadium wasn’t, as usual, just about the tournament. Vegan burgers from Veganske Hody, vegan goulash, and non-vegan sausages were all available to participants. Kofola and beer flowed freely but also fresh coffee from Coffee Sheep and (non-)alcoholic drinks from the Oi!Bar. Music was provided by Dj Wychytawacs, DJ Berkowitz and, as usual, The Ugly Selectors. Their production really made the atmosphere on that hot, June Saturday. We also prepared a larger framework program. Thanks to Flow Control Shop and František Radačovský a day long graffiti workshop took place. A few steps further was a slingshot range with different targets – Tiso (the president of the Slovak fascist state), Stalin, Hitler and Kotleba (leader of ĽSNS – the major parliamentary neo-fascist party). Despite the hot weather a Muay Thai training took place with a good number of participants.
The evening program in club Lúč was started by a discussion with Monika Vrzgulova, the director of the Holocaust Documentation Center and with Mrs. Viera Barátaová, a woman who experienced the fascist regime of the Slovak State and whose family suffered through the holocaust. We talked about Mrs. Baratovás direct experiences with fascist dictatorship as well as about the current situation and the political rise of a new generation of Slovak fascists. The discussion, even if heavy and tough, was very insightful and it’s message, as well as that of Mrs. Barátová, was to overcome passivity and actively face the threat of fascism, racism, and persecution of minorities, while we still have the time and opportunity.
After the discussion, it was time for our guest from Croatia – White Angels Zagreb, who founded the club NK Zagreb 041. They presented their club for its conception to current day and explained the story of how fans got the idea to create their club, to the way it actually functions. It was very inspirational to see how a small fan scene flourished into an independent, self-managed club, which brings people together – antifascist and the radical scene, with migrant and refugee communities. We were very happy that the guys from WAZ found time to visit our tournament. After them, the evening festivities began.
The concerts were opened by Heretix from Bratislava, set the atmosphere for the next shows. What followed after them was hinted at by the pyro show that began outside the club. Up next were Los Fastidios, who were the musical top of the 2016 tournament. Their Antifa Hooligans could be heard around Trenčín, long after their gig. Following Los Fastidions, was Municia who we once again were happy to welcome to UAFA CUP. Last up were The Unabomber Manifest from Liege. The party was ended in the early morning hours with Brigada Rakija.
UAFA CUP 2016 was full of great experiences and important experiences and lessons. UAFA CUP is was and will be a benefit event. This year, thanks to all those who participated, we managed to support two causes. First was the support to young Simona Jančová and her family. Simona who faces various disabilities, received a bicycle fit, especially for her need. The second part was dedicated to the support of antifascists in Belarus, who are awaiting trial. Altogether we collected over 1500€ for benefit in 2016. For this, we want to thank once again all those who helped and took part!
Here we would like to thank all those who helped us with the tournament. First are all those who worked for months, be it from us or from Ultras Trenčín and Legia Laugaricio and all volunteers. You have our biggest thanks. Next up is the club AS Trenčín, for providing the stadium and facilities and for help with the preparation. Last, but certainly not least are all participants of UAFA CUP 2016. It doesn’t matter if you play football or not if you are ultra or a regular fan, or just consider football a distraction, in these days it is important to stick to your principles. When a new generation of fascists is on the rise, when minorities and people of different ethnicity are facing persecution we, as antifascists, have to organize and cooperate. That is one of the reasons why UAFA CUP was created and we, therefore, hope to see you at UAFA CUP 2017 to celebrate our fifth year!