Bayern Munich’s ultras and supporters groups have long since been involved in socio-political issues, creating awareness, and speaking out against injustices, whether they pertain to the club directly, or not.
The weekend Bundesliga match against SC Freiburg was no exception, as the ultras displayed banners during the match from the Südkurve voicing their opinion on Bayern having considered the idea of signing Jerome Boateng since they are running a bit thin on center backs given the knee injury to Matthijs de Ligt.
Boateng’s legal issues off the pitch involving cases with two separate women have, at different times, been the center of controversy, dating back to when he was still a Bayern Munich player before ultimately joining Olympique Lyon in Ligue 1. One of said cases was one of domestic violence with a previous partner, the other had to do with an ex-girlfriend taking her own life after the two had been together. The banner’s displayed during the match read (as per Archie Rhind-Tutt): “Misogynistic violence is not a private matter! Stand for our proclaimed values — or is our charter and awareness campaign just marketing?”
The club has maintained that they have always wanted to keep Boateng’s off-pitch matters off of the pitch, but that has not been a sentiment taken too kindly too by the majority of Bayern’s ultras. Sporting director Christoph Freund responded to the banners that were displayed during the 3-0 win over Freiburg, citing that the club was only trying to solve depth issues at center back since they have had some recent injury situations comes up.
“FC Bayern stands for values. I personally stand for values. It was a special situation, we no longer had any central defenders ten days ago. In the end, we decided together in the end,” Freund said, as per T-Online’s Julian Buhl.
Werder Bremen fans had also displayed banners pertaining to the issue during their match against Hoffenheim, and more specifically, calling on Freund for referring to Boateng’s domestic violence case as a “private matter,” adding that said matters are not a “big topic for us (Bayern).” Their banner read; ‘Violence against women is not a private matter. Christoph Freund, shut up!’
Werder Bremen fans' banner today in response to Christoph Freund's statement regarding Boateng— Bayern & Germany (@iMiaSanMia) October 7, 2023
'Violence against women is not a private matter. Christoph Freund, shut up!'
[ @Alexoutofhoffe] https://t.co/lzrcXAimD8 pic.twitter.com/2qaXuJqHcI