Zimbru Chisinau v Dacia Chisinau

7pm  21 October 2016

Moldova, Divizia Nationala
Zimbru Chisinau 0 Dacia Chisinau 1 (att 1,650)

It's been a while since I was last able to tick one of the 55 UEFA nations, so I was pleased to reduce the tally still needed to 14 by spending a few days in the former Soviet republic of Moldova.

The capital, Chisinau, tends not to feature in lists of top tourist destinations and in truth there's not a lot to see. Most of the city was rebuilt after World War Two, although judging by much of what we saw they're still not finished.

They have finished the Zimbru Stadium though. It's about three miles out of the city centre (an 8p trolleybus ride) and serves as the national football stadium as well as a home to FC Zimbru Chisinau.

I think the ground holds around 10,000, although the capacity wasn't tested for a local derby against Dacia. The stats website Soccerway gives the crowd as 1,650, which I assume they got from an official source somewhere, but by my estimate of the actual attendance was several hundred fewer.

Zimbru did have two sets of ultras who did their best, with drums, chanting and flares, to create some atmosphere. They were in separate corners of the stadium, as apparently they don't get on and fights aren't unknown.

Dacia's followers, including their own drum-wielding ultras, didn't enter the stadium until the 20th minute. Whether it was police orders, or some sort of protest, I have no idea. They didn't miss much, and where at least inside to see their team score the game's only goal, in the first minute of the second half.

It wasn't the greatest of games, but the better side won. Having gone behind Zimbru never really looked capable of getting back level.











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