Sunday, September 27, 2009

FK Pelister

FK Pelister (Macedonian: ФК Пелистер) is a football club based in the city of Bitola, Republic of Macedonia. The team plays in the Macedonian First League.

The club was originally formed back in 1924 under the name Omladina, followed by Pelister and then SK Bitola. In 1945 the team was renamed back to Pelister and has used that name ever since. 

The team played in the lower divisions of the former Yugoslavia and were champions of Macedonia in 1960, 1961, 1975 and 1982 along with winning the old Macedonian Cup in 1990. They earned promotion to the Yugoslav Second League for the first in team history in 1974. Soon after they were relegated but made another comeback in 1982 with Mitko Butlevski as chairman and Ivan Čabrinović as manager.

Their greatest achievement up to date was winning the 2001 Macedonian Cup, after which they played in the UEFA Cup. Since the formation of the Macedonian First League, they played there every season up until 2003 when the team fell on hard times caused by financial problems. 

A few years later former players Mitko Stojkovski and Toni Micevski were able to save the club from collapse, after taking over the club they brought instant success with the team winning the Macedonian Second League title in 2005. The following year they made a successful comeback to the Macedonian First League and got to the Macedonian Cup semi-final.

Notable players to come from the Pelister youth system are: Gjorgji Hristov, Dragan Kanatlarovski, Toni Micevski, Nikolče Noveski, Toni Savevski and Mitko Stojkovski. Overall the club is best known for developing some of the best young talents in the country.

Pelister played 3 times in the National Cup Finals (1993, 1994, 2001) and won the Macedonian National Football Cup once in 2001.

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