In the 1962-63 season Jonas Szabo returns and the club returns to the 2nd National Division. The rise is effusively celebrated, as can be seen on the first page of a pull-out section published in the Jornal de Famalicão newspaper and in a unique magazine – O Famalicão, published on 29 June 1963. The game that seals FC Famalicão’s return to the 2nd National Division is in Guimarães, at the Amorosa ground, with a victory over FC Tirsense in a ‘grand final’ where Carneiro’s goal leads to celebrations throughout the Vila.
From 1960 onwards the club showed signs of recovery, both in terms of its sporting level as well as the support from the mass of supporters, with members renewing their membership. The accounts report for the season highlights that “the financial situation is very healthy”. At the end of the sporting season it is crowned with the title of winner of the regional First Division. The Club is once again in the National Championships.
Now at the Bargos Ground in the 1952/53 and 1953/54 seasons, FC Famalicão competes in the 2nd national division. This last season, with the readjustment of the competitive leagues and after a championship where the results are not appropriate for “a stadium of one of the largest nationally”, FC Famalicão ends up going down to the 3rd Division.
The following years are difficult, spent between the National 3rd Division and the regional championships. Chairpersons and boards of directors follow on from one another. Despite everything the difficulties are overcome due to actions of support around the city.
Illustrative image of an initiative held in December 1958 at the Olimpia cinema.
1950/51 – Freião Ground banned
This is a difficult season that FC Famalicão passes through, with the Freião Ground banned following a game against Leixões. The team plays its “home” matches in Gaia, Braga and Santo Tirso until works were completed on the Reguladora ground, a fallback solution following the ban…
1945/46 – Semi-finals of the Portugal Cup. Another remarkable moment.
The excellent run in the 2nd Division is matched in the Portuguese Cup, with FC Famalicão being dubbed the “Giantkillers” by eliminating Elvas and Olhanense, two 1st Division teams, before reaching the semi-finals against Sporting CP, at the time the dominant force in Portuguese football, with their “5 violins”. And it is only against this Sporting that FC Famalicão is defeated… 11-0 is a heavy defeat but a moment unmatched so far with that presence in the semi-finals of the Cup.
1946/47 – First time in the 1st Division
Benfica, Belenenses, Sporting, Olhanense, Atlético, FC Porto, Vitória de Guimarães, Vitória de Setúbal, Elvas, Académica, Estoril, Sanjoanense, Boavista and FC Famalicão. These are the teams that throughout the season compete at the premier level of Portuguese football. FC Famalicão moved to the Freião Ground and there are reports that around 5000 fans watched the 1-1 draw against Vitória de Guimarães. In this first season the result that has stayed in the memory is the victory over FC Porto, the intense game with Sporting with their “5 Violins” and a record of 7 wins, 3 draws and 16 defeats… It was a troubled year that ended in penultimate place with 17 points, three less than Vitória de Setúbal, and relegation from the division….
1945/46 – A memorable season!
FC Famalicão ends the 2nd Division National Championship on the top of the table with 88 goals scored and 5 conceded, with a record of 10 wins in 10 games! Brilliant! There is still some way to go to reach the 1st Division. The battle for a place in the Finals is won by defeating Leixões by 6-1 and then Salgueiros by 2-0. In the Access Pool to the 1st Division the club faces Estoril, Portimonense and União de Coimbra. FC Famalicão comes in second place. They are to play against the second to last placed team in the 1st Division, Boavista. The match is at Póvoa and the score is 3-2! And a place in History. Futebol Clube de Famalicão has won promotion to the 1st Division! This occurrs on 30 June 1946.
The colours of the club
This is the birthplace of the blue and white that to this day we know as the colours of Vila Nova. The newspaper records of the time show this change in the colours of the club’s kit, with the definitive abandonment of green as the predominant colour in exchange for blue. This change is said to have been due to the influence of Armando Leitão. Image from a publication of 15 July 1939.
FC Famalicão change Azul Branco
Inauguration of the Berberia Ground
FC Famalicão and an assorted team from Futebol Clube do Porto face each other in the opening game at the Berberia Ground. This year Futebol Clube de Famalicão starts competing in the Promotional Championship of the Braga Football Association.
FC Famalicão team at the inauguration of the Berberia Ground