Historical hatred added extra Polish fervour to Foxes’ win over Legia in Leicester

Many Poles living in Leicester and Leicestershire turned out at the King Power Stadium to support Leicester City in Thursday’s game against Legia Warszawa, just because they have a fierce dislike of Legia. Maciej Wojcik finds out why.

It is not surprising that Leicester City has Polish people among its fans. For real fans of the game, it is just impossible to live without attending matches, so at some point after moving to a new country, some will change the club they support as well.

But last Thursday, in the King Power Stadium stands, Polish could be heard much more often than usual, even without counting the away support sector. There are historic reasons that some people came to watch the game perhaps a bit more as ‘anti-Legia’ rather than as fans of the home side, cheering on the Foxes.

Eryk, 23, a food production operative, said: ”My favourite team is Pogon Szczecin. I will attend LCFC against Legia hoping as much as possible to see Legia lose the game. To say I don’t like them is to make an understatement.”

Warehouse operative Mateusz, 33, shed a bit more light on the reasoning: „Lech Poznan are always in my heart! You want to know why we hate Legia? First, see YT clip titled ‘Legia Kurczak’, where a toddler is holding Lech’s scarf and chanting: ‘This is how we were brought up to hate this team, and without cause, and for no reason we sing to the whole world today: Legia the chicken, Legia chicken, Legia Warsaw is an old chicken!’ Originally there should be another word instead of ‘chicken’, but, you know, it’s the kids’ version. This is a very, very old tradition to hate Legia, every Lech fan follows that. Why? Perhaps because they are from the capital city. Maybe because of their fans, who are known for very ugly behaviour. Of course I will be there!”

Lorry driver Pawel, 45, said: “Me and my two friends support Wisla Plock. Everybody knows that Legia was stealing young talented players from other clubs. People remember that and that is the main reason to hate that team. We will support LCFC!”

Marek, 48, a delivery driver) added: “My club is GKS Katowice. I am mad enough to order my club flag with the statement ‘LEICESTERSHIRE’ on it for one purpose: to display it in front of Legia fans. I hope that will make them upset, because we hate each other. One of the most famous GKS players was Jerzy Wijas, who played for the Polish national team as well. He was brave enough to refuse to play for Legia. They used their connections in PZPN [Polish Football Union] to make it unable for him to play at central level. For a couple of years he had to play for very local teams because his licence applications were rejected one after another. There are more stories like that one. Nothing is strange that we hate Legia!”

However, not only ‘anti-Legia’ Polish spectators were present inbetween the Leicester City fans. Lukasz, a 40-year-old self-employed welder, said: „For me it is just a family day out. I am not about being a fan who attends every match of the team he has chosen. We are just hoping that we are gonna see good football in a good atmosphere created by fans. And yes, we will support LCFC, because we are living here.”

The claim Legia Warszawa’s fans are also known for ugly behavior was shown during their stay in Leicester. Graffiti with „CWKS” (an abbreviation from „Centralny Wojskowy Klub Sportowy” [Central Military Sports Club]) or a capitalised “L” letter within a crowned circle, the Legia fans’ logo, remains on their route to the stadium and back.

Graffiti on the wall next to the Royal Infirmary Hospital in Leicester. RKS is probably from RKS Radomiak Radom – a club whose fans are friendly with Legia fans

Leicester City fans were disgusted with some Legia fans’ behaviour, such as setting off flares and clashes with police, with 12 officers injured and seven Legia fans arrested, as reported by the Leicester Mercury.

Legia fans set off flares in the King Power Stadium – YouTube

But what of the claims about „stealing young talented players”? Back in the 1970s and 80s, when Poland was under communist rule, Legia Warszawa belonged to the People’s Army of Poland, and it was mandatory for every man to serve at least two years in the army. It was possible, however, to have playing for Legia Warszawa counted as service for the army. This created an unfair advantage for Legia Warszawa, because other clubs had to train players or pay for them, but Legia did not. This is very common knowledge among Polish football fans, and is confirmed not only in leading press titles about sport, but is mentioned on the official Legia website as well. Whoever refused, got into trouble, as Jerzy Wijas found out. The story about him also has media coverage.

Will ‘anti-Legia’ fans who watched Thursday’s match be converted into proper Leicester City supporters? After they saw the Foxes’ 3-1 victory over Legia, there is a chance of that. Time will tell.

Student turns long-time hobby into self-made beauty business in Leicester

By Sarah Danquah

A student turned a long-time hobby into a business after years of offering hair and brow services to family and friends for free.

Angel Monu, 19, is a second-year psychology student at the University of Leicester and recently started her beauty business ‘AMBeautyBar’ although she has been doing wigs, hair and eyebrows for years.

“I used to do my sisters’ and friends’ hair and messed around with their eyebrows since year nine, but I never charged them, I just love enhancing people’s beauty,” she said.

Angel especially aims to give teenagers and young adults the opportunity to feel good about themselves by highlighting their natural features.

She offers brow shaping, tinting or laminations as well as lash lifts, several hair services and general waxing in Leicester and her hometown Telford.

The 19-year-old completed professional training online and is now a certified brow technician, Lash lift artist and wax specialist.

“I joined a brow and lash workshop online, which took me two weeks – but I also practiced on my friends as well.”

Her business is well received by students. “I only started in March and I already got more than 700 followers on Instagram,” she said.

Angel didn’t expect the amount of support she got. “There are so many people in the beauty industry doing the same work as me,” she said.

To ensure her business does not collide with her studies, thy psychology student manages appointments and deadlines in a timetable and doesn’t take bookings unless assignments are finished.

She is already thinking ahead into the future and even wants to fulfil her dream of buying a studio from her savings as the demand grows.

“I am definitely going to carry on, I get so many messages from my customers saying they feel so pretty,” Angel explained.

“From my savings, I wish to buy my own studio so I can actually have designated areas to do brows, hair and waxing.”

If you wish to follow AMBeautyBar on Instagram or arrange an appointment, you can do so by visiting https://instagram.com/am.beautybar_?igshid=jggvwmlqld0a

DMU Hip Hop supporters raise money for breast cancer charity Make 2nds Count

By Kira Gibson

As part of Raise and Give (RAG) week at the Students’ Union in De Montfort University (DMU), the DMU Hip Hop society was asked to do a charity stall.

They chose to raise money for Make 2nds Count – a charity dedicated to helping those with secondary breast cancer.

Secondary breast cancer is a cancer that has spread from the breast to other areas of the body, also known as stage IV (four) breast cancer.

A member of the Hip Hop Society, Caitlin Hamit, was running the stall on Tuesday (Nov23).

She said: “The charity was chosen as it was an under-represented charity and one of her close family members had been diagnosed with secondary breast cancer and this charity helped her family with it.”

The week is arranged by the SU to raise awareness and money for a variety of charities. RAG week will be running until 4pm tomorrow (FRI, NOV26), with various societies raising money for their chosen charities.

The stalls are filled with fun games and things to do, where only a donation or a small amount is asked for to play along.

DMU Hip Hop’s stall decided they would have a chocolate toss.

The aim of the game was to land a pound coin on your desired chocolate bar and if you managed it, then you would win the chocolate bar in question.

They catered for all in this, with normal Dairy Milk bars, vegan and dairy free options for those who couldn’t have Dairy Milk.

The stalls also have a donation box on there with the charity details on in case you’d just like to donate without playing the game.

To find out more about RAG week, please go to: https://www.demontfortsu.com/news/article/dsu/Raise-and-Give-2021/

To find out more about Make 2nds Count and how to raise money for their charity, please go to: https://www.make2ndscount.co.uk/

Survey finds 65 per cent of UK adults want a career change following pandemic

By Thomas Carter

Nearly 70 per cent of working adults in the UK want to change career pathways following a turbulent couple of years during the Covid-19 pandemic, a recent survey has found.

The survey, conducted by Careermap, sampled 2,300 UK-based adults who are all working full time, part-time, or in an apprenticeship.

Even though results show 65 per cent of respondents are looking for a career change, the survey also found that four in five people (80 per cent) have never considered using an apprenticeship as a way to re-skill or change industry.

Simon Bell, the founder of Careermap, said: “There are many misconceptions when it comes to apprenticeships, the main one being that apprenticeships are just for the younger generation.

“This simply is not the case, apprenticeships are great career pathways for anyone who is looking at a particular industry from engineering and technology to marketing and accounting.

“In fact, there are apprenticeships available in most industries, not only is this a great option to re-skill if you are looking for a career change, it can provide people with a sense of job security – especially important after the past couple of years.”

CHANGE ON THE CARDS: A Careermap survey found that 65 per cent of adults want to switch careers (Credit: Thomas Carter, Canva)

Careermap, the conductor of the survey, is one of the UK’s leading websites in offering expert guidance for people looking for apprenticeships, university degrees, graduate schemes, adult learner courses and jobs.

Bowen Saurma-Jeltsch, 20, who is a prototype mechanic as part of the Ford Motors apprenticeship, said: “I joined as an apprentice four years ago with the intention of earning a salary, getting work experience and a good education.

“Although there isn’t a right or wrong (when choosing a career), I believe that an apprenticeship can excel a person beyond the traditional degree route.

“Being able to get paid, not pay for a degree and build experience in an industry is very attractive and could lead to quicker job progression.

“By going to all of the different areas available (within the business), this gave me a greater understanding into work ethics and how a large company like Ford interconnects.

“I don’t think you can put a value on the experience you get from being able to learn a job comfortably with so many skills and study at the same time.”

For more information on career changes, including apprenticeships and graduate schemes, visit: www.careermap.co.uk

Leicester City Council granted over £600,000 to improve the safety of parks and streets

by Abigail Beresford

A massive budget of more than £600,000 has been granted to the Leicester City Council by the government to improve the safety of the streets and parks in Leicester.

The announcement came on Friday last week (NOV19), with the funding aimed at making women feel safer walking the streets.

The money is set to be spent on increasing CCTV surveillance, providing police to patrol the parks at night, and educating the community on how to report inappropriate behaviour.

“This funding is fantastic news for our communities and will not only deter crime and violence, but it will also give women additional confidence when enjoying our public spaces and parks, especially when alone,” said Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland Police and Crime Commissioner, Rupert Matthews in a statement released recently. 

“Improving CCTV coverage and increasing police visibility around key areas of the city will go some way to making women feel safer and increasing the support available should they require help quickly.”

Parks set to see the improvements include Bede Park, Western Park, Aylestone Meadows, Victoria Park, Knighton Park, Rally Park, and Abbey Park.

Funds are also set to go towards training staff in pubs, restaurants, and clubs to identify harmful behaviour, and how to challenge and report incidents.

Following increasing reports of sexual assault in the Leicestershire area, there are new hopes of finding a solution to helping women feel safe walking the streets.

“Hearing this news gives me a bit of hope. I’ve had an awful experience walking through one of the parks not only at night but in the day, too,” said a 19-year-old student, who chose to remain nameless.

“It’s awful after a night-out. Ubers get expensive at times when clubs close on weekends, and I have no option but to spend extortionate amounts to get home. I can’t bring myself to walk through the park again.”

Helplines:

Rape Crisis 0808 802 9999

Victim Support 0808 168 9111

The Survivors Trust 0808 801 0818