Welcome to the refreshed Bavarian Football Works! To celebrate the new look and feel of our sports communities, we’re sharing stories of how and why we became fans of our favorite teams. If you’d like to share your story, head over to the FanPosts to write your own post. Each FanPost will be entered into a drawing to win a $500 Fanatics gift card [Contest Rules]. (I’m sorry to the non-Americans here. Truly.) We’re collecting all of the stories here Why We Are Fans and featuring the best ones across our network as well. Come Fan With Us!
Hi, I’m George, and I am chronologically challenged. That’s right, I’m old, so very, very old. Why is that important? Well, it has a lot to do with why I’m a fan of the greatest football club in the world, FC Bayern München.
I was born in the beautiful city of Munich, way back in the Dark Ages of the mid-1960s. Back then, the town was ruled by TSV 1860 München, who had captured the DFB Pokal in 1964, made the European Cup Winners Cup final the following year, then won the league in 1966, and came in second in 1967. On top of all that, my mother was a Sechziger fan (albeit, very passive), and things could have turned out real ugly for me.
But, as luck would have it, Bayern was promoted to the Bundesliga the year before I was born, and immediately started making waves, while 1860’s star was already starting to lose some of its shine. By the time I was old enough to understand a little something about soccer, the Blues had already been relegated, and the Reds were on a roll, with a DFB Pokal title of their own in their inaugural season while finishing third in the league, and a surprising and dramatic win in the European Cup Winners Cup final the following year.
This was followed by the events that put Bayern on the international map. During my most impressionable years, the club managed to win three consecutive European Cups— the Champions League equivalent of its time — from 1974 to 1976, and I was hooked for life. Of course, the star studded ensemble made it easy to be a fan too, with the likes of Franz Beckenbauer, Uli Hoeness, Sepp Maier, and the inimitable Gerd Müller gliding across the impeccably groomed field at the Olympiastadion, followed by Karl-Heinz Rummenigge and Paul Breitner.
I still cringe when thinking about what could have happened had things turned out slightly different. What if 1860 had not dropped off at just the right time? What if Beckenbauer had never decided to join Bayern’s youth system, and instead had jumped to 1860, as he had originally intended? What if Bayern’s GM had not shown up a mere hour earlier than his 1860 counterpart at Müller’s house, and succeeded in signing him? Instead of a happy, well-adjusted individual with a wonderful family, would I have been roaming the streets in a blue and white jersey, lonely, drunk and angry, raging at the world? Well, Lady Luck was smiling on me those days, and I can proudly say, I’m a Bayern fan!
Come on, don’t be shy! Share your story about how you became a Bayern fan. It doesn’t matter if you are older than me (damn, you’re old), or if you just discovered the Reds last season. Submit a Fanpost. Do it!