The Croatian Cup (Croatian: Hrvatski nogometni kup) is an annually held football tournament for Croatian football clubs and is the second most important competition in Croatian football after the Prva HNL league championship. It is governed by the Croatian Football Federation (CFF) and usually runs from late August to May. Cup winners automatically qualify for next year's UEFA Europa League, except when cup winners are also league champions, in which case cup finalists take their place.
The cup was established in 1992, after Croatian clubs had abandoned the Yugoslav First League and Yugoslav Cup competitions following the breakup of Yugoslavia. As of the 2011–12 season a total of 21 cup seasons were held. The competition has historically been dominated by the Eternal Derby sides - the most successful club is Dinamo Zagreb, who appeared in 16 finals and won 12 cup titles, followed by Hajduk Split, who won 5 titles out of 9 finals they appeared in. In addition, at least one of the two teams had appeared in all but two finals.
Only three other clubs have managed to win the cup (Rijeka, Inter Zaprešić and Osijek), and Istra 1961 is the only team to date who managed to reach the cup final from outside top level, in 2003.
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Famous quotes containing the word cup:
“If you desire to drain to the dregs the fullest cup of scorn and hatred that a fellow human being can pour out for you, let a young mother hear you call dear baby it.”
—Jerome K. Jerome (18591927)