This weekend matches counting for the 25th leg of Romania’s top football league are scheduled, accounting for the last but one stage in this regular season. Two matches on Friday, Chindia Targoviste vs FC Voluntari, in Ploiesti, and CFR Cluj vs Viitorul Constanta in Cluj, will be followed on Saturday by a game pitting Academica Clinceni against Gaz Metan Medias. Also on Saturday, Politehnica Iasi take on Universitatea Craiova. On Sunday, Sepsi Sfantu Gheorghe face FC Botosani, while later in the evening the traditional Romanian derby between Dinamo Bucharest and FCSB takes place on the National Arena.
This is the 176th match between the two Bucharest clubs, and we cannot help noticing the perfectly even score in direct matches so far: each team has won 59 games, and the other matches ended in draws. In terms of championship matches, Dinamo have a slight advantage, with 48 wins against 43, whereas in Romania’s Cup FCSB have so far won 15 games and lost 8 of its matches against Dinamo.
The first time the 2 sides met in the Romanian League One was in November 1948, when Dinamo beat the Army Sports Club, as the team was called at that time, 1-nil. The most recent match was in October 2019, and was a 1-all draw. Dinamo has not won any direct matches against FCSB for almost 3 years, more specifically since May 1, 2017.
Sunday’s match comes at a time when the 2 sides are widely apart in the championship standings. FCSB is ranked 3rd at the moment and targets a new champion title. Dinamo, on the other hand, ranks 9th, stands no more chances to move up into the playoffs and, for the 3rd consecutive year, will stay in the play-outs. Still, this is the one match in which the players’ drive and sense of competitiveness might overturn any previous mathematical estimates.
We should also mention that the 25th championship leg will end on Monday with a game in Sibiu, pitting FC Hermannstadt against Astra Giurgiu.
Topping the charts at present are CFR Cluj with 48 points, followed by Craiova and FCSB with 43 points each.
(translated by: Ana-Maria Popescu)