What a way to kick off Bayern Munich’s competitive campaign under new manager Niko Kovac; an emphatic, comprehensive 5-0 routing of Eintracht Frankfurt. A hat trick from Robert Lewandowski and goals from Kingsley Coman and Thiago Alcantara capped off what was a thoroughly joyous occasion.
For me, I had the amazing opportunity of experiencing the Supercup in the presence of the official FC Bayern supporters club of New York City at Smithfield Hall on West 25th street. They were founded in 2012 prior to the first Bundesliga match of the 2012-2013 season and routinely meet at Smithfield Hall for all Bayern matches. While I didn’t initially realize they were there upon arriving about 35 mins before kickoff, the atmosphere that they generated throughout the match made it clear they were there and that they were passionate Bayern Munich supporters.
Mia San Mia - It’s the little things that make it so special
To be fair, before getting to Smithfield Hall, I had been walking around New York City for most of the day with a few relatives and was in need of a proper lunch once I got there. So, naturally, I ordered a [delicious, by the way] meal and ate it ate the bar up until the match started and, because I’m an incredibly slow eater, it took me until midway through the first half to finish. By the time I was done eating, Lewandowski had already grabbed his first two goals and Bayern were in complete cruise control. From the corner of the bar that FCBNYC were in, after each goal Bayern scored, you could here an incredibly raucous rendition of the Allianz Arena’s goal announcement: “TOOOOOORRRRRRRRR FUR FC BAYERN MUNCHEN. Nummer neun, ROBERT; LEWANDOWSKI...ROBERT; LEWANDOWSKI...ROBERTTTTT; LEWANDOWSKIII
When I finally made my way over to the corner where the FC Bayern NYC fan club were set up, I was immediately met with incredibly warming hospitality. Upon seeing my red (2017/2018) Lewandowski kit, one of the guys that was over there jokingly asked me why I hadn’t been watching the game with them from the start, then brought me in for a hand shake and pat on the back, asked my name, where I was from and made me feel like I’d been watching matches with the NYC supporters club all along.
After meeting a few of the members, I continued to watch the match on a giant projector screen with them and I was really fixated on the match when one of the members came right up to me. Initially, I thought she was trying to just get around me, so I moved out of the way. but when I stepped aside she was looking at me like what are you doing? She proceeded to say “no, no, no. I was just coming up to say ‘Hi’ and meet you and find out where you’re from. You’re never in the way if you’re a Bayern fan!” We hugged it out and she introduced me to a few of the members during the closing stages of the second half and I got to celebrate both Coman’s and Thiago’s goal with them. Most of them also thought it was really cool that I wrote for Bavarian Football Works and had seen our stuff several times before! After the match was over, we went outside to take a few pictures as a group (one seen below)
(Photo originally from miamimunchen on Instagram. - I’m the guy in the black backwards hat in the middle row 2nd in from the right.)
While it doesn’t seem like much on the surface, the hospitable, family feel that I got with FCBNYC emulated exactly what it means to be a Bayern Munich fan and embrace mia san mia. Mind you, this was only the Supercup, a match that doesn’t really bare too much significance other than winning a minor piece of silverware and building good momentum going into the Bundesliga season. I highly recommend meeting up with FCBNYC at Smithfield Hall if you’re ever in the area when Bayern has a match. You WILL NOT be disappointed at all. Good food, great bier, and FANTASTIC company!