Starts Brocēni

Starts Brocēni

Starts Brocēni is a Latvian football club. Currently it plays in the 2nd Latvian league under the name Saldus FK/Brocēni . It was one of the leading Latvian clubs in 1960s-1970s.


CSK Brocēni

The club was founded in 1961 in the small Latvian town of Brocēni as CSK Brocēni. In its first year the club won the Latvian Cup and finished 4th in the league. The following years were less successful for the club, in 1965-1967 it got three 10th place finishes in a row.

tarts Brocēni

In 1968 the club changed its name in what was to prove the most successful season in its history. In addition to the second win in the Latvian Cup, Starts also won its only Latvian league championship by beating Elektrons Rīga by a single point. A.Andrejevs from Brocēni was the best goalscorer in the league.

The next few years after the excellent 1968 season were less impressive, as the positions in the league changed in a dropping chain - 1-5-8-9-11, but in 1973 Starts was on the rise again with the rise of the star of Mihails Smorodins - a 21 year old local striker who scored 18 goals in 22 matches of the season, becoming the best goalscorer in the league and bringing Starts silver medals of the league and a Latvian Cup final (in which it lost to Pilots Rīga). Although Smorodins continued scoring in nearly every game (in 1974 he scored 23 goals in 22 matches) and was the league's best goalscorer for three more seasons in a row, the club had a rather weak defense and it could repeat the successes of 1968 and 1973. In 1977 Smorodins left for Daugava Rīga which played on a much higher level than Starts.

In 1980 Starts finished last in the Latvian league and were relegated. In 1982 they were back but faced another relegation as they earned 11 points over 24 matches. The 1980s were a bad decade for the club from Brocēni which played in lower Latvian leagues. Only in 1991 Starts again played in the top Latvian league and after finishing 9th from 20 clubs it earned a place in the first season of the newly independent Virslīga [ [ Club performance in Latvian top league] ] .

The first Virslīga season wasn't a big success for Brocēni - only 11th place from 12th teams and relegation to 1. liga. In 1994 Starts finished second in the first league and together with Kvadrāts Rīga returned to Virslīga. The returned proved quite successful as Starts finished in 4th place, in 1996 they were 6th (as FC Starts Brocēni) but the club couldn't fulfill the financial requirements for the 1997 Virslīga season, so it was relegated to 1. liga.

FK Saldus

In 1997 when Brocēni had lost its place in Virslīga it relocated to the nearby city of Saldus and changed the club name to FK Saldus. From 1997 to 2000 Saldus played in the first league but before the 2001 it withdrew from the league and moved to the 2nd league [ [ Latvian Championship 2000] ] , where the club plays until now.

FK Saldus/Brocēni

In 2004 the club changed the name again by adding Brocēni to its name, thus proving the connection with the formerly popular name of Starts Brocēni. In 2005 the club earned a promotion to 1. liga but refused because of its financial limitations.

As of January 2008 Saldus/Brocēni is a 2nd league club with no clear future perspectives.


* Latvian top league:
** Winners: 1 (1968)
** Runners-up: 1 (1973)
* Latvian Cup:
** Winners: 2 (1961, 1968)
** Runners-up: 1 (1973)

Notable players

* Mihails Smorodins


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