Twenty years of good football
Belarus’ best football club of recent years, BATE Borisov, celebrates its jubilee
Borisov’s former football team became BSSR champion three times in the 1970s, and once even won the BSSR Cup. Sadly, the squad then folded. It was reborn as BATE FC twenty years ago, when the team joined the second league of the sovereign Belarus Championship. The current Chairman of the club’s board, Anatoly Kapsky, was among the initiators of the revival of Borisov squad. Primarily due to his energy, BATE has moved up from the second league to the Champions League Group Stage, becoming the only Belarusian team to reach such a high level.
Fans are always there for their super heroes
In the early years, Yuri Puntus was the team’s head coach, and later headed the junior and national teams of Belarus, working with Minsk’s MTZ-RIPO club. He now coaches Mozyr’s Slavia. Across various years, BATE has been coached by Igor Kriushenko and Victor Goncharenko, who was replaced by the current head coach of the squad in 2013, Alexander Yermakovich.
Since its rebirth, the Borisov squad has become Belarus’ champion twelve times, including for the last ten years in a row. It boasts six victories in the Belarusian Super Cup and three wins in the Belarus Football Cup. In 2008, BATE first found itself among the participants of the Champions League Group Stage and then played four more times, among 32 members of the most prestigious European club tournament.
The Borisov team has played in the Europa League — the second most important continental tournament, allowing Belarusian football fans to see the acknowledged grandees of world football engaging with their team.
Since May 2014, BATE has been playing at modern Borisov-Arena, which is able to seat 13,000 spectators. It is the only Belarus stadium meeting UEFA highest category standards, and hosts international matches for the Belarusian national football team, and for other Belarusian clubs, performing in continental tournaments.
By Kirill Karin