Bănel Nicoliță is a Romanian professional footballer of Romani descent. Nicoliță is nicknamed Jardel after the famous Mário Jardel of Brazil, he has been used on occasion as a right back. He is known for his electrifying pace and high work rate, he plays for Liga III side CS Făurei as a forward. He made his debut in Romanian Liga II. After, he joined Politehnica Timișoara, making his Divizia A debut at the age of 19. However, he made only 15 league appearances for the club before moving to Steaua București, at the beginning of 2005, he signed a 5-year contract with Steaua. Shortly after joining Steaua, Nicoliță won his first Liga I title upon his first season with the team, he is known as a humble and hard-working, though not technical and quickness are his strengths. In the spring of 2006, he scored twice in the match against Real Betis, his goals opening Steaua's door to the quarterfinals of the UEFA Cup, he scored again in the quarterfinals, this time against Rapid București to help his team reach the semifinals.
On 1 November 2006, he scored an own goal against Real Madrid in a Champions League encounter. For him and the Romanian side, this turned out to be decisive in the outcome of the match, he claimed. After a game with FC Argeș, Romanian newspaper Gazeta Sporturilor named him Bănelinho. On 27 August 2008, he has scored one goal in the match against Galatasaray, in the third qualifying round of UEFA Champions League, which sent Steaua București to the group stage for the third consecutive year. Starting with the 2010–11 season, Bănel was the new captain of Steaua, but with the arrival of new coach Ilie Dumitrescu, he soon gave his armband to Cristian Tănase. On 30 August 2011, Saint-Étienne announced on their official website that they had found agreement with Steaua for Nicoliță's transfer and that the player would fly to France and undergo a medical the following day. Being in his last year of contract with Steaua București the transfer fee was €700.000. He signed a contract worth €400.000 per year.
On 6 November he scored his first goal helping Saint-Étienne draw against second place Montpellier. In a game against Sochaux Nicoliță offered the assist for teenager Zouma to give Saint-Étienne the win. After only six months with the French team he became a leader scoring 3 goals and offering 3 assists after hist first 11 appearances. In February 2012 Nicoliță hit a rough patch, having a couple of not so convincing games, being described as monotonous. In March, he was sidelined for a couple of weeks, due to ligament problems, he recovered in late March 2012 and played in the games against Montpellier and Olympique Lyonnais, both 1–0 defeats. On 2 September 2013, Ligue 1 club FC Nantes confirmed Nicoliță was signed on a season long loan from Saint-Étienne, he made an assist for his first match against FC Sochaux. Nicoliță scored one goal, he used to be a Romanian U21 international. On 25 March 2008, he was decorated by the president of Romania, Traian Băsescu for the results on Qualifying to EURO 2008 and qualification to UEFA Euro 2008 Group C with Medalia "Meritul Sportiv" — class II with two barret.
He was captain for the first time in the friendly against San Marino on 11 August 2011. Scores and results list Romania's goal tally first. "Score" column indicates the score after the player's goal. Nicoliță is an ethnic Romani/Gypsy, one of six brothers raised by his mother in the small, impoverished town of Făurei, Nicoliță grew up determined to succeed and his speed and diligence on the field are proof of his unalloyed passion for the game. One of his brothers, Stelian is a professional footballer who played for CF Brăila and other teams in the lower leagues of Romania. Bănel and Stelian played together at their hometown team CS Făurei. Statistics accurate as of match played 2 September 2014 Official FCSB profile Bănel Nicoliță at RomanianSoccer.ro and StatisticsFootball.com Bănel Nicoliță at Soccerway
FCSB short for Fotbal Club Steaua București and sometimes colloquially known as Steaua, is a Romanian professional football club based in Bucharest. Founded in 1947 as Asociația Sportivă a Armatei București, it has spent its complete history in the Liga I, the top tier of the Romanian football league system; the team was part of the CSA Steaua București sports club and belonged to the Romanian Army, however it separated in 1998. The Army sued the football club in 2011 and has since been in a conflict regarding the ownership of the Steaua brand, which resulted in the change of the name to the acronym FCSB in early 2017. Domestically, Roș-albaștrii have won Liga I 26 times, Cupa României 22 times, Cupa Ligii 2 times and Supercupa României 6 times – all competition records. Internationally, they have won the European Cup and European Super Cup, both in 1986, they reached the European Cup final once again in 1989, when they were defeated by A. C. Milan. Throughout its history, Steaua played the final of the Intercontinental Cup, the quarter-finals of the European Cup Winners' Cup and the semi-finals of the UEFA Cup.
Their home ground is Arena Națională, having moved here from the Ministry of National Defence-owned Stadionul Ghencea. The club played in the colours of the Romanian tricolour – blue and red – but yellow soon lost its importance and the team became associated with the red and blue colours; some away kits have begun reintegrating the yellow colour. The club has a long-standing rivalry with neighbouring Dinamo București, with matches between the two being referred to as "the Eternal Derby" or "the Romanian Derby". Steaua was founded on 7 June 1947 at the initiative of several officers of the Romanian Royal House; the establishment took place following a decree signed by General Mihail Lascăr, High Commander of the Romanian Royal Army. The club's first name was ASA București, it was formed as a sports society with seven initial sections, including football, coached by Coloman Braun-Bogdan. ASA was renamed CSCA in 1948 and CCA in 1950. In 1949, CSCA won the Cupa României, defeating CSU Cluj 2 -- 1 in the final.
Under the name of CCA, the club managed to win three Championship titles in a row in 1951, 1952 and 1953, along with its first Championship–Cup double in 1951. During the 1950s, the so-called CCA Golden Team became nationally famous. In 1956, the Romania national team played Yugoslavia in Belgrade and won 1–0. In the same year, CCA, coached by Ilie Savu, became the first Romanian team to participate in a tournament in England, where it achieved noteworthy results against the likes of Luton Town, Sheffield Wednesday and Wolverhampton Wanderers. At the end of 1961, CCA changed its name once again to CSA Steaua București; the club's new name translated to The Star and was adopted because of the presence of a red star, a symbol of most East European Army clubs, on its crest. A poor period of two decades followed in which the club claimed only three championships. Instead, the team won nine national cup trophies, for which matter it gained the nickname of "cup specialists". During this period, on 9 April 1974 Steaua's ground, Stadionul Ghencea, was inaugurated with a friendly match against OFK Belgrade.
Under the leadership of coaches Emerich Jenei and Anghel Iordănescu, Steaua had an impressive Championship run in the 1984–85 season, which it won after a six-year break. Subsequently, Steaua became the first Romanian club to reach a European Cup final, which it won against Barcelona on penalties, after a goalless draw. Steaua therefore became the first Eastern European team to claim the title of European champions. An additional European Super Cup was won in 1987 against Dynamo Kyiv. Steaua remained at the top of European football for the rest of the decade, managing one more European Cup semi-final in 1987–88 and one more European Cup final in 1989. Notably, this was in addition to four national cups. Furthermore, from June 1986 to September 1989, Steaua ran a record 104-match undefeated streak in the championship, setting a world record for that time and a European one still standing; the Romanian Revolution led the country towards a free open market and, several players of the 1980s team left for other clubs in the West.
After a short pull-back, a quick recovery followed and Steaua managed a six consecutive championship streak between 1992–93 and 1997–98 to equalize the 1920s performance of Chinezul Timișoara and three more cups in 1995–96, 1996–97 and 1998–99. At international level, the club managed to reach the UEFA Champions League group stage three years in a row between 1994–95 and 1996–97. In 1998, the football club separated from CSA Steaua and changed its name to FC Steaua București, being led by Romanian businessman Viorel Păunescu. Păunescu soon the club was plunged into debt. George Becali, another businessman, was offered the position of vice-president in the hope that Becali would invest money in the club. Becali purchased the majority share in 2002 and turned the governing company public in January 2003; because of his c
The Cupa României is a football cup competition for Romanian teams, held annually since 1933–34, except during World War II. It is the country's main cup competition, being open to all clubs affiliated with the Romanian Football Federation and the county football associations regardless of the league they belong to; the winner of the competition is granted a place in the UEFA Europa League qualifiers and plays the Supercupa României. Most finals have been held at the Stadionul Național, at other stadiums in Bucharest. During the construction of the new Stadionul Național, the final was staged each year in a different major city of the country. In 2007, the final was held in Timișoara at the Dan Păltinișanu stadium, this being the second occasion when the last game was played outside Bucharest; the next three finals were staged in Piatra Neamț, Târgu Jiu, Iași and again in Brașov. The competition has been dominated by Bucharest-based teams, the most successful performers being FCSB with twenty-two trophies, followed by Rapid București and Dinamo București with thirteen each.
The record for the most consecutive Cups won is held by Rapid București, who won the Romanian Cup 6 times in a row, between 1937 and 1942. On 22 July 2005, Samsung Electronics signed a one-year sponsorship deal; the name of the competition was changed to Cupa României Samsung. On 9 October 2006, FRF and Ursus Breweries signed a sponsorship agreement for the next three seasons. Ursus Breweries changed the name of the competition to Cupa României Timișoreana, after the Timișoreana beer brand. On 16 May 2016, FRF announced the rebranding of competition and the signing of contracts with new sponsors like Kaufland, UPC Broadband and Stanleybet. On 20 October 2017, FRF announced that the new main sponsor of the competition is the betting company Casa Pariurilor; the competition has undergone minor changes in format over the years. The following format came in use in the 2009–10 season; the main differences between the current system and the last one are the dates at which rounds take place, the two-legged format of the semifinals.
The competition at this phase is organized by the county football associations. Forty-two teams advance to the next phase; the competition at this phase is organized by the Romanian Football Federation. For the first five rounds, teams are paired using geographical criteria in order to avoid long travel distances; the teams from a lower division or with a lower ranking in the last league season host the games. First round – 140 teams Second round – 80 teams Third round – 40 teams Fourth round – 56 teams Fifth round – 28 teams Round of 32 – Starting with this round a seeding system is used for the draw, as follows:Pot A: Teams 1–6 from last season's Liga I final table Pot B: The remaining Liga I teams Pot C: Teams from the lower divisions Teams from pot A are paired with teams from pot C the eight remaining pot C teams are paired with pot B teams, with the lower league clubs hosting the games; the four remaining pot B teams will play each other, with the host club determined by means of a draw.
Round of 16 Quarterfinals Semifinals FinalEvery year, based on the national and international football calendar, FRF's executive committee may choose a two-leg or one-leg system for the round of 16, quarterfinals and semifinals. Games at these stages are, when played using a one-leg system, hosted by a neutral venue; the final is held at a pre-established venue in Bucharest. The performance of various clubs is shown in the following table: The following table sorts cities by the number of Cups won by local teams. Bucharest, hosting the three most decorated sides in the competition and having staged the majority of the Cup finals, is the most prolific city; as of 16 July 2015. Official site The Romanian Cup on the FRF's official site
Ciprian Andrei Marica is a retired Romanian footballer. He played as a second striker or a winger, but he was used as a centre forward at the Romania national team. Marica's first professional club team was Dinamo București, from the city, he started to gain attention though he only played 23 games in three years with the club. Ciprian played his so far best seasons with them, he gained international experience. On 23 July 2007, he transferred to German club VfB Stuttgart, after his former club, Shakhtar Donetsk, rejected another offer, from English team Derby County amongst interest from Manchester City. Marica signed a 5-year contract. Stuttgart sporting director Horst Heldt said: "Ciprian is a flexible forward, a permanent thorn in the side of any opposition defence, who fits outstandingly into our team, he wanted to join us desperately."Marica made his debut for VfB in the Bundesliga on 12 August 2007, in a home game against Schalke 04. In his first season, he got plenty of appearances. After this first failed season then-coach Armin Veh mistrusted Marica, giving him only few appearances.
Things seemed to get better after the sacking of Veh. New coach Markus Babbel entrusted him to play instead of Cacau. Only after Christian Gross replaced Babbel as VfB coach, Marica got a new chance profiting by long-time injury of Cacau; this time Marica didn't disappoint his coach, inter alia, four goals in three consecutive matches. As of season 2010 -- 11 he started again to be only the third choice behind Pavel Pogrebnyak. On 12 July 2011, Marica was released from his contract at Stuttgart. On 28 July 2011, Marica signed a two-year contract worth € 5m, he chose to remain in Germany, despite having offers from Premier League club Blackburn Rovers, other two French clubs such as Marseille and Paris Saint-Germain. In a match against Maccabi Haifa, on 14 December, Marica scored one goal, to help his team to a 3–0 win. On 29 January 2012, Marica scored a double against 1. FC Köln Although Lukas Podolski opened the score in the first half, Marica made it 2–1 for FC Schalke 04, with the game ending in a 4–1 win for his team.
Towards the end of his contract with the team he received interest from teams such as Shakhtar and Inter. On 27 September 2013, Marica signed a contract with Spanish La Liga side Getafe, he made his Getafe debut on 6 October as a substitute in the 3–1 win against Betis Sevilla. On 31 October, Marica scored. In May 2014, he scored twice in a 2–1 win over Rayo Vallecano, keeping Getafe out of the relegation zone. In the summer of 2014, Marica signed a two-year contract with Turkish side Konyaspor. On 15 October 2015, he was released by Konyaspor. Marica played only seven games in 14 months for the Turkish side because of his injuries. On 14 January 2016, Marica reached an agreement with Steaua Bucharest, thus returning to a Romanian club after 12 years, he became the 59th footballer to play for both big Bucharest rivals and Steaua. In his first match with Steaua, a 2-0 victory against CS Concordia Chiajna, he played from the start and was replaced after 84 minutes, his performance was deemed weak and conservative, as he only managed to get two opportunities in a game in which he was otherwise unremarkable.
Marica scored 25 goals in 72 caps. He made his debut on 16 November 2003, in a friendly game with Italy played in Ancona and won by Squadra Azzurra 1–0. Marica was introduces in the 81st minute, his first goal for the national team came on 17 November 2004, in a match against Armenia. On 25 March 2008, he was awarded the "Meritul Sportiv", class III medal, by the president of Romania, Traian Băsescu for the results on Qualifying to EURO 2008 and qualification to UEFA Euro 2008 Group C, he scored his first double for Romania in a 2012 European championship qualifying match against Bosnia and Herzegovina, on 3 June 2011. He scored his first Hat-trick for Romania in a Friendly match against Trinidad and Tobago, on 4 June 2013; as of 10 May 2016 Scores and results list Romania's goal tally first. As of match played 7 September 2014. Dinamo BucureștiRomanian League: 2001–02, 2003–04 Romanian Cup: 2002–03Shakhtar DonetskUkrainian Premier League: 2004–05, 2005–06 Ukrainian Cup: 2003–04 Ukrainian Supercup: 2005Steaua BucharestLeague Cup: 2015–16 Official website Ciprian Marica at fussballdaten.de Ciprian Marica at National-Football-Teams.com Ciprian Marica – FIFA competition record Ciprian Marica – UEFA competition record
Adrian Mutu is a Romanian football coach and former player, the reserve team coach at United Arab Emirates club Al Wahda. As a player, he played as a forward. Mutu started his career in Romania playing two years for Argeș Pitești and half a year for Dinamo București, before joining Internazionale in Italy midway through the 1999–2000 Serie A. After only 10 games with the Nerazzurri, he left for Hellas Verona and Parma, for which he scored 39 goals in the next three years, his excellent form brought him a €22.5 million transfer to Chelsea. Due to breach of contract for failing a drug test, he was released and returned to Serie A to join Juventus. After the 2006 Italian football scandal and the relegation of Juventus to Serie B, Mutu decided to join Fiorentina, where he played for five years, he had a season at Cesena and French club Ajaccio before returning to his native country with Petrolul Ploiești in 2014. After two more brief spells with Pune City and ASA Târgu Mureș, Mutu retired from professional football in 2016.
From his international debut in 2000, Mutu played 77 matches for the Romanian national team and scored 35 goals, a joint record alongside Gheorghe Hagi. He was included in the country's squads at the European Championship in 2000 and 2008. A four-time winner of the Romanian Footballer of the Year award, only Gheorghe Popescu and Gheorghe Hagi have received the award more times, with six and seven wins respectively. Mutu began his professional career with FC Dinamo Bucureşti. In 2000, Mutu was sold by Inter for 7,500 million lire; the Veneto side has signed Mauro Camoranesi and young rising star Alberto Gilardino that season, but narrowly avoided relegation through winning the relegation tie-breaker playoffs. In June 2001, Verona bought Mutu outright, for 5,100 million lire. In the 2002–03 season, Mutu was loaned to Parma with the option to purchase him outright. In August 2003, Chelsea paid Parma €22.5m for Mutu's transfer as part of new owner Roman Abramovich's spending spree,In the 2004–05 season, Mutu had a difficult relationship with the club's new manager José Mourinho, with each accusing the other of lying about whether the player was injured for a 2006 World Cup qualifying match against the Czech Republic.
In September 2004, Mutu was banned from football for 7 months until May 2005 after testing positive for cocaine use. Chelsea started to seek compensation from Mutu in early 2005; the Football Association Premier League Appeals Committee decided that the player had committed a breach of his contract without just cause which made Chelsea eligible to claim the compensation. Mutu started his first appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport in April 2005 but the case was dismissed in December 2005. On 11 May 2006, Chelsea applied to FIFA for an award of compensation against Mutu. In particular, the club requested that the FIFA Dispute Resolution Chamber award compensation to the club following Mutu's breaching the employment contract without just cause. However, on 26 October, the DRC decided that it did not have jurisdiction to make a decision in the dispute and that the claim by the club was therefore not admissible. On 22 December, Chelsea lodged a new appeal before the CAS seeking the annulment of the DRC's decision.
On 21 May 2007, a CAS panel upheld the club's appeal, set aside the DRC's decision, referred the matter back to the DRC, "which does have jurisdiction to determine and impose the appropriate sporting sanction and/or order for compensation, if any, arising out of the dispute" between the Club and the Player,"On 7 May 2008, the FIFA Dispute Resolution Chamber ordered Mutu to pay €17,173,990 in compensation to his former club, Chelsea FC, for breach of contract. This included €16,500,000 for the unamortised portion of the transfer fee paid to Parma, €307,340 for the unamortised portion of the sign-on fee, €366,650 for the unamortised portion of the fee to the Agent, but was not to take into account the determination of the damages for the amounts paid by the club to the player or the remaining value of the employment contract. Mutu had to pay within 30 days after being informed of the decision in August 2008. Mutu lodged an appeal with the Court of Arbitration for Sport for the second time, but on 31 July 2009, that court dismissed his appeal, Mutu was ordered to pay Chelsea the amount plus interest of 5% p.a. starting on 12 September 2008 until the effective date of payment.
In addition, Mutu had to pay the costs of arbitration for both parties, including CHF 50,000 to Chelsea. The fine was the highest levied by FIFA. Mutu could have been banned from football by FIFA if he did not pay the fine although some lawyers disputed this. Mutu started his third appeal, this time to the Federal Supreme Court of Switzerland, in October 2009, but on 14 June 2010 this appeal was dismissed with Mutu again being ordered to pay Chelsea €17m in damages. In 2013, FIFA DRC decided in a new ruling that Livorno and Juventus were jointly liable to pay compensation. On 21 January 2015 the Court of Arbitration for Sport annulled the FIFA DRC ruling. Mutu signed a five-year contract with the Italian club Juventus on 12 January 2005, despite still being banned from football until 18 May; as Juventus had no available room to buy another non-EU
FC Universitatea Cluj
Fotbal Club Universitatea Cluj known as Universitatea Cluj, or as U Cluj, is a Romanian professional football club based in the city of Cluj-Napoca, Cluj County. Founded in 1919 by Iuliu Hațieganu, the team plays in the Liga II, the second tier of the Romanian football league system. Universitatea Cluj spent most of their history in the first division, but never became national champions, they played five Romanian Cup finals, under four different names, won the trophy in the 1964–65 season. The club is traditionally considered to be the most important in the region of Transylvania, however this status has been threatened by the success of their city rivals CFR Cluj, its players and fans are nicknamed Șepcile roșii, because of the red berets worn by students of the Cluj University of Medicine. Universitatea Cluj traditionally plays in white and black kits, although variations of red and gold have been used in the past; the club's home ground is the Cluj Arena. The Universitatea sports club of Cluj was founded in September 1919 by the "Sports Society of University Students".
Its first chairman was a physician and politician. In the early years of its existence "U" Cluj played in local competitions; the team played against Chinezul Timișoara in the 1923 final of the Mara Cup, losing 0–2. "U" played in the Romanian national football championship Divizia A from 1932. In their first season "U" finished first in its group and played the championship final against Ripensia Timișoara. In the first season of the Romanian Cup, in 1933–34, "U" reached the final, losing against Ripensia Timișoara. In 1940, "U" moved from Cluj to Sibiu as a result of the Second Vienna Award, when the northern part of Transylvania was ceded to Hungary. In 1942, "U" played in the final of the Romanian Cup for a second time and lost against Rapid București. In 1945, after the end of the Second World War and the return of the northern part of Transylvania to Romania, "U" returned to its home in Cluj. In 1946, the name of the club was changed to Știința Cluj. In 1949, the team reached the final of the Romanian Cup for the third time, but it was beaten by CSCA București—now called Steaua București.
At the end of the 1950s and the beginning of the 1960s, the manager of Știința Cluj was Ștefan Kovács—a famous Romanian coach who became the manager of Ajax Amsterdam. In 1964–65, Știința Cluj won the Romanian Cup. In 1966, the name of the team was changed back to "Universitatea". At the end of the 1971–1972 season, "U" was in the best position in the Romanian Championship Divizia A after the Second World War. In 1998, "U" lost to FCM Bacău. In 1999, "U" was relegated into the second Romanian division, Divizia B and in 2000 it was relegated for the first time in its history into the third division, Divizia C, it played one season in the third division, in 2001 it was promoted back to Divizia B. The manager of the team at the time was the ex-Romanian international, Ioan Ovidiu Sabău—who started playing football in the 1980s at "U" Cluj. In the 2005–06 Divizia B season, the new objective became promotion to the first league. Under coach Leo Grozavu, who played defensive football, the team made many nil draws and the team lost second place by a point, though in the last match days they won 4–0 with the first place and the third, 3–2 with the 2nd place.
In the beginning of the 2006–07 Liga II season, a new manager, Adrian Falub—who had never coached before but had played over 220 matches for "U" Cluj in the first league—was hired. Under his lead, the team only reached 8th position. Yet, the moment passed and the team reached 1st position separated by over 6 points from the next position. On 19 May 2007, virtual promotion was achieved after a 0–0 draw against second place contender Dacia Mioveni. Three weeks before the final match day, "U" ended its 8-year spell in the lower divisions, returning to the first league for the 52nd season in its history. 2007–08 Liga I season, first season of Liga I in last 8 years for "U" Cluj was a tough one, the club didn't manage well the promotion and at the end of a tumultuous season the club finished on 18th place, the last one, with only 17 points, returning to Liga II.2008–09 Liga II season was a transition one and "U" saved from relegation to Liga III in the last round, after a 3-0 victory against Arieșul Turda while the main contra-candidate ACU Arad ended only 1-1 at home against Bihor Oradea, a match, followed by a major scandal.
Bihor Oradea accused ACU Arad of trying to fix the match, a victory being enough for the team from Arad to save from relegation. In the summer of 2009 "U" Cluj was taken over by Florian Walter, owner of Romprest Service, one of the leaders of the facility management sector in Romania. After only one season under the ownership of Walter, "U" Cluj promoted to Liga I finishing 2nd in the 2009–10 Liga II season. In the new season, "U" Cluj demonstrated, much better prepared from an administrative and sports point of view and managed to finish 2010–11 Liga I season on the 8th place, far away from the relegation area. 2011–12 Liga I season brought "U" to another area of its existence, well known and valuable players like Mircea Bornescu, George Galama
Switzerland the Swiss Confederation, is a country situated in western and southern Europe. It consists of 26 cantons, the city of Bern is the seat of the federal authorities; the sovereign state is a federal republic bordered by Italy to the south, France to the west, Germany to the north, Austria and Liechtenstein to the east. Switzerland is a landlocked country geographically divided between the Alps, the Swiss Plateau and the Jura, spanning a total area of 41,285 km2. While the Alps occupy the greater part of the territory, the Swiss population of 8.5 million people is concentrated on the plateau, where the largest cities are to be found: among them are the two global cities and economic centres Zürich and Geneva. The establishment of the Old Swiss Confederacy dates to the late medieval period, resulting from a series of military successes against Austria and Burgundy. Swiss independence from the Holy Roman Empire was formally recognized in the Peace of Westphalia in 1648; the country has a history of armed neutrality going back to the Reformation.
It pursues an active foreign policy and is involved in peace-building processes around the world. In addition to being the birthplace of the Red Cross, Switzerland is home to numerous international organisations, including the second largest UN office. On the European level, it is a founding member of the European Free Trade Association, but notably not part of the European Union, the European Economic Area or the Eurozone. However, it participates in the Schengen Area and the European Single Market through bilateral treaties. Spanning the intersection of Germanic and Romance Europe, Switzerland comprises four main linguistic and cultural regions: German, French and Romansh. Although the majority of the population are German-speaking, Swiss national identity is rooted in a common historical background, shared values such as federalism and direct democracy, Alpine symbolism. Due to its linguistic diversity, Switzerland is known by a variety of native names: Schweiz. On coins and stamps, the Latin name – shortened to "Helvetia" – is used instead of the four national languages.
Switzerland is one of the most developed countries in the world, with the highest nominal wealth per adult and the eighth-highest per capita gross domestic product according to the IMF. Switzerland ranks at or near the top globally in several metrics of national performance, including government transparency, civil liberties, quality of life, economic competitiveness and human development. Zürich and Basel have all three been ranked among the top ten cities in the world in terms of quality of life, with the first ranked second globally, according to Mercer in 2018; the English name Switzerland is a compound containing Switzer, an obsolete term for the Swiss, in use during the 16th to 19th centuries. The English adjective Swiss is a loan from French Suisse in use since the 16th century; the name Switzer is from the Alemannic Schwiizer, in origin an inhabitant of Schwyz and its associated territory, one of the Waldstätten cantons which formed the nucleus of the Old Swiss Confederacy. The Swiss began to adopt the name for themselves after the Swabian War of 1499, used alongside the term for "Confederates", used since the 14th century.
The data code for Switzerland, CH, is derived from Latin Confoederatio Helvetica. The toponym Schwyz itself was first attested in 972, as Old High German Suittes perhaps related to swedan ‘to burn’, referring to the area of forest, burned and cleared to build; the name was extended to the area dominated by the canton, after the Swabian War of 1499 came to be used for the entire Confederation. The Swiss German name of the country, Schwiiz, is homophonous to that of the canton and the settlement, but distinguished by the use of the definite article; the Latin name Confoederatio Helvetica was neologized and introduced after the formation of the federal state in 1848, harking back to the Napoleonic Helvetic Republic, appearing on coins from 1879, inscribed on the Federal Palace in 1902 and after 1948 used in the official seal.. Helvetica is derived from the Helvetii, a Gaulish tribe living on the Swiss plateau before the Roman era. Helvetia appears as a national personification of the Swiss confederacy in the 17th century with a 1672 play by Johann Caspar Weissenbach.
Switzerland has existed as a state in its present form since the adoption of the Swiss Federal Constitution in 1848. The precursors of Switzerland established a protective alliance at the end of the 13th century, forming a loose confederation of states which persisted for centuries; the oldest traces of hominid existence in Switzerland date back about 150,000 years. The oldest known farming settlements in Switzerland, which were found at Gächlingen, have been dated to around 5300 BC; the earliest known cultural tribes of the area were members of the Hallstatt and La Tène cultures, named after the archaeological site of La Tène on the north side of Lake Neuchâtel. La Tène culture developed and flourished during the late Iron Age from around 450 BC under some influence from the Gree