16 Aprile 1896 - 31 Gennaio 1944
Arpad Weisz was born in Scolt, in Hungary, on the 16th April 1896 from Jewish parents: Lazzaro and Sofia Weisz. He started playing football and at the age of 15 he joined the Torekves team, entering the first team two years later. When the First World War broke out, he fought as a volounteer in the Austro-Hungarian army, but on the 28th November 1915, during the 4th Isonzo battle on the Mrzli mount, in the North of Tolmino, he was taken prisoner and imprisoned in Trapani by Italian soldiers. After the end of the hostilities, he started playing again in the Torekves team and in 1923 he passed to the Maccabi Brno, a very well-known team in all Europe.
He took part in 6 matches in the National team, including the scrimmage against Italy in Genoa on the 4th March 1923. In 1925, in Italy, he was employed by the “Internazionale” (=International) team of Milan, but, after 10 matches, he had to stop because of physical problems. When he retired, the club promoted him trainer. In 1928 he launched the young player Giuseppe Meazza, who would become the best known Italian champion, but Arpad only took the 7th place. Then, Arpad returned to Hungary to train the Szombathely team of the city, who he would bring to a tour in America. In the summer 1929, he was called back by his old club, that had become “Ambrosiana-Inter”, who he led to the Championship. At the age of 34, he was the youngest trainer ever to have won the national title. On the 24th September 1929, he married Ilona Rechnitzer, Jewish as well, born in Szombathely in 1908. Her name was rendered in Italian as Elena and her surname became Veisz.
At the end of June 1930, Arpad and Aldo Molinari published “Il giuoco del calcio” (=The game of football), an unbelievably innovative manual. On the 7th July 1930, his wife gave birth to their first born Roberto. Arpad passed to the Bari team: on the 16th June 1932, in Bologna, he won the playoff against the Brescia team and on his way back to Apulia he was triumphantly welcomed by his fans. Having gone back to Ambrosiana-Inter, he got the second place and lost in the final of the European Cup. In the 1933-34 season, having won the first bracket, his team finished in the 2nd place, so Weisz stopped working for Ambrosiana-Inter. On the 26th September 1934, he was called by the Novara team and on the 2nd October, his wife gave birth to their daughter Clara. At the end of January 1935, Weisz was engaged by the Bologna team. In the whole region Emilia-Romagna, he was the first one to win the championship with 14 players. In the following season he won again the title and on the 6th June 1937, he had the Bologna team win the final match against the Chelsea team in the Expo tournament in Paris. In 1937-38, Bologna took 5th place; in 1938-39, the team started competing again for the title, but the racial laws imposed to all the Jewish to leave Italy.
For the last time, in October 1938, Weisz was the leader of the Bologna team in the match against Ambrosiana-Inter. His substitute, the Austrian Felsner, won the league again. On the 10th January 1939, he left Bologna with his family, moving to Paris. In Fabruary, he arrived in Holland and became the coach of the Dordrecht team. In the meanwhile, Germany invaded Holland, consequently Clara and Roberto Weisz were expelled from school and Arpad couldn't work any longer because of racial laws. On the 2nd August 1942, the Weisz family was arrested by Gestapo. On the 4th October, from Westerbork, they were loaded on an armoured train directed to Auschwitz, in Poland. After three travelling days in inhuman conditions, Arpad was left in Alta Slesia where he had to do hard labour. Elena, Roberto and Clara arrived in Auschwitz-Birkenau, where they were immediately killed in a gas room. Having been deported to Auschwitz, Arpad Weisz died on the 31st January 1944, because of deprivation and terrible pains.
Carlo Felice Chiesa
Traduzione di Leonardo Chiarella, Caterina De Nardis, Francesca Di Paolo Francesca, classe 3^Q Liceo ginnasio Luigi Galvani Bologna. Supervisione prof.ssa Annamaria Marconi.