A record crowd watched as league leaders WKS Śląsk Wroclaw beat KS Lechia Gdańsk 1-0 in the first match to be held at the Municipal Stadium Wroclaw, one of four Polish venues for next summer's UEFA European Championship.
Johan Voskamp scored the first goal at the new venue on Friday night, a 51st-minute penalty in front of a sell-out attendance of 42,771 – the highest since the Ekstraklasa was established in 2005/06. "I'm kind of a history maker and it's a very nice feeling," said the striker. "I'm happy because the dream came true. The fans will give us wings and will be an advantage in the championship."
Comparing the EURO stadium to the most famous ones in his native Netherlands, Voskamp added: "In Holland we have the ArenA in Amsterdam and De Kuip in Rotterdam which are very similar; the stadium in Wroclaw is also beautiful. I would love to watch the Dutch national team here at UEFA EURO 2012."
The evening began with Śląsk coach Orest Lenczyk being presented with the Ekstraklasa coach of the month award, while captain Sebastian Mila received a gift for bringing up a century of appearances for the club. Lenczyk, 69, said: "I'm finally coaching a team whose home is a fantastic stadium. I could feel the emotion in the team before the game. The players were talking about the match, saying the fans not only wanted to see a nice stadium, but good football too."
Midfielder Łukasz Madej added: "The stadium makes a huge impression and I hope it will bring us luck. I want us to play as well as this stadium deserves." Team-mate Waldemar Sobota had similar feelings: "The atmosphere was amazing. I felt really emotional when entering the pitch; it's a unique feeling to play here."
The Polish national team will find out exactly what it's like when they take on Italy on 11 November in the first international to grace the Municipal Stadium Wroclaw. Shaped like a Chinese lantern, it will stage three group games at next summer's UEFA European Championship, co-hosted by Ukraine.
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