1985–86 Yugoslav First League
The 1985–86 Yugoslav First League season was marked by scandal and controversy due to allegedly wide match-fixing during the last week of fixtures.
|Dates||11 August 1985 –|
29 June 1986
|European Cup||Red Star|
|Cup Winners' Cup||Velež|
|Top goalscorer||Davor Čop (22)|
After the last week was played, FK Partizan was crowned champion due to better goal difference than second-placed Red Star Belgrade. However, after weeks of public pressure and huge public outcry, on 20 June 1986, the Yugoslav FA presidency headed by Slavko Šajber decided to impose extraordinary measures that included the following:
- voiding the already played week 34 matches of the 1985–86 season and ordering a replay of every single one (nine fixtures in total)
- docking 6 points from each of the 12 clubs suspected of being involved in match-fixing, meaning they would start the following league season with -6 points
Each club agreed to play the replay except for Partizan. As a result their week 34 fixture was registered as a 3–0 defeat, and the club was thus stripped of the league title, which was now awarded to Red Star. Based on this decision, it was Red Star Belgrade who got to represent SFR Yugoslavia in the 1986–87 European Cup.
What followed on domestic front was a series of appeals and lawsuits and the entire case eventually went all the way to the Yugoslav Constitutional Court. By the time Yugoslav Constitutional Court delivered its final ruling to the Court of Joint Labour of SR Serbia on 29 July 1987, the next league season was already completed with FK Vardar winning the title due to 12 teams starting the season with -6 points.
The court's ruling was that there was no evidence of wrongdoing in the week 34 of the 1985–86 season and thus that season's title was given back to Partizan. That also meant that there was no merit for the 6-point docking in the 1986–87 and now that season's table was re-counted so that now Partizan became a new champion.
Still, Vardar got to represent SFR Yugoslavia in the 1987–88 European Cup.
|Pos||Team||Pld||W||D||L||GF||GA||GD||Pts||Qualification or relegation|
|1||Partizan (C)||34||21||7||6||65||29||+36||49||1986–87 UEFA Cup|
|2||Red Star Belgrade||34||21||7||6||73||38||+35||49||1986–87 European Cup|
|3||Velež||34||13||11||10||64||50||+14||37||1986–87 European Cup Winners' Cup|
|4||Hajduk Split||34||15||7||12||55||44||+11||37||1986–87 UEFA Cup|
|17||OFK Belgrade (R)||34||12||6||16||48||63||−15||30||1986–87 Yugoslav Second League|
Rules for classification: 1) points; 2) goal difference; 3) number of goals scored.
(C) Champion; (R) Relegated.
|Fahrudin Omerović (goalkeeper)||34||0|
|Dragan Mance [a]||5||2|
|Head coach: Nenad Bjeković|
- died 3 September 1985 in a car accident
As mentioned, week 34, the last week of 1985–86 Yugoslav First League season, featured some highly suspicious results. All the matches started at the same time on Sunday, 15 June 1986.
|Home team||Score||Away team||Notes|
|Partizan||4–0†||Željezničar||In order to become league champions, Partizan needed to beat Željezničar by at least the same margin that Red Star potentially beats Sarajevo by in their match. Since both matches were scheduled to start at the same time, Partizan came up with an impromptu pre-match ceremony for their famous striker Momčilo Vukotić who retired the previous year, meaning that their match versus Željezničar actually started 10 minutes later than Sarajevo-Red Star match.|
|Sarajevo||0–4†||Red Star||In order to become league champion, Red Star needed to beat Sarajevo by a larger margin than Partizan potentially beats Željezničar by in their match. Red Star ended up winning away by a four goal margin.|
|Vojvodina||1–7†||Dinamo Zagreb||Vojvodina was already mathematically relegated while Dinamo Zagreb needed to win, hopefully by a big margin, in order to have a chance at getting a third UEFA Cup spot through better goal difference. The game ended with a huge win for the visitors who scored 7 goals.|
|Hajduk Split||5–3†||Dinamo Vinkovci||Hajduk needed a win in their quest for the third UEFA Cup spot, while Dinamo Vinkovci's Davor Čop was in the middle of a scoring race and needed goals in order to become the league's top scorer. Hajduk won the game while Dinamo's Čop scored a hat-trick for the losing side.|
|Sutjeska||5–5†||Budućnost||Budućnost and Sutjeska both needed points to have a chance at avoiding relegation. The game ended in a draw.|
|Čelik||1–1†||Rijeka||Rijeka needed points in their fight for the third UEFA Cup spot, while Čelik needed points to have chance at avoiding relegation. The game ended in a draw.|
|Velež||2–3†||OFK Belgrade||Velež already ensured a UEFA Cup spot, while OFK Belgrade needed a win to have a chance at avoiding relegation. The game ended with lowly visitors winning at the ground where even the top Yugoslav teams had trouble getting points all season long.|
† results of matches suspected being fixed
|Club||Average home attendance||Average away attendance|
|Red Star Belgrade||19,882||16,471|
- Overall league attendance per match: 8,507 spectators
- "Namještanje utakmica je stari zanat". novilist.hr (in Croatian). 10 June 2010. Retrieved 12 August 2011.