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Real Sociedad

Real Sociedad are a Spanish football team from San Sebastián/Donostia in Guipúzcoa/Gipuzkoa. Founded on September 17 1909, they currently play in the Primera División.

Known as the Donostiarras, from the Basque name of their home city, they play in blue with white vertical stripes and white shorts. Home stadium is the Anoeta that seats 32,000 spectators.

Given the "royal" title by King Alfonso XIII, Real Sociedad were one of the founder members of the National Championship league in 1929. That season, the team finished fourth, with Benzobas being the highest scorer of the Championship. The team's name changed to Donostia Football Club in 1931, with the advent of the republic, but changed back to Real Sociedad after the Civil War in 1939.

The team has generally fluctuated between the Primera and Segunda divisions, in one period (during the 1940s) managing to be relegated and promoted seven times. The best period of the team's history must be the early 1980s where they won the Primera two seasons running.

For many years, Real Sociedad followed the practice of their Basque rival Athletic Bilbao of signing only Basque players. In recent years, however, they have abandoned this policy. The team that finished a surprising second in La Liga in 2002-03 dramatically illustrated this change. Key contributors to that side included a Serb (Darko Kovacevic), a Turk (Nihat Kahveci), a Russian (Valeri Karpin), and a Dutch goalkeeper (Sander Westerveld).


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