Bayern Munich is one of the most common names used by English speakers for the Fußball-Club Bayern München e.V.,. Said sports club should be most familiar to most people because of its professional football team, which is one of the best in Germany and beyond. Here are 10 things that you may or may not have known about Bayern Munich:
1. Based in Munich, Bavaria
Given its name, it should come as no surprise to learn that Bayern Munich is based in Munich, Bavaria. After all, Bayern is the German name for Bavaria in much the same manner that München is the German name for Munich. It is clear why English speakers have turned the name into Bayern Munich, but it is possible that Bayern is less recognizable as Bavaria than München is as Munich.
2. Founded by Members of a Gymnastics Club
Bayern Munich came into existence because a Munich-based gymnastics club called Münchner TurnVerein 1879 rejected the request of its footballers to join the German Football Association in 1900, which caused said individuals to go their own way. The whole incident happened because football wasn’t particularly popular in Germany in those times, seeing as how it was still a recent introduction.
3. Very Successful in Those Earliest Times
It is interesting to note that Bayern Munich managed to find a fair amount of success in those earliest times. For example, it managed a number of high-scoring victories versus its local rivals within a few months of its foundation. Likewise, it won the first Bavarian league called the Kreisliga in 1910 to 1911, though it wouldn’t win it a second time until just before the start of the First World War.
4. Performed Mergers Twice
Over the course of its existence, Bayern Munich has performed two mergers with sports clubs for the purpose of gaining access to better finances as well as better facilities. However, it went independent in 1923, which is a status that it has managed to hold on to ever since that time.
5. Got Its Colors from One of the Two Mergers
With that said, Bayern Munich hasn’t been left unmarked by those two mergers. After all, it surrendered its black color in exchange for the red and white colors of Münchner Sport Club, which was the first sports club that it merged with in 1906. Although that relationship came to a close in 1919, Bayern Munich continued to make use of those colors in various ways at various times.
6. Got Gutted Under the Nazi Regime
Bayern Munich did not fare well under the Nazi regime. For example, both its president and its coach left Germany because they were Jewish, while other members were purged. While Bayern Munich was permitted to continue operating, it was taunted as a Judenklub because of its Jewish background, while its local rival 1860 Munich benefited.
7. Has a Well-Organized Ultra Scene
It is interesting to note that Bayern Munich has a well-organized ultra scene. For those who are unfamiliar with the term, ultras refer to fanatical football fans who are much better-organized than other football fans. Some examples of ultra behavior range from the use of flares to the showing of banners, which are meant to intimidate the other side.
8. Ultra Scene Known to Sometimes Stand Against Racism and Homophobia
Ultra scenes are often associated with some kind of politics. In the case of Bayern Munich’s ultra scene, it has been known to take stands against racism, homophobia, and right-wing extremism, which is perhaps unsurprising considering its history.
9. Its Local Rival Is 1860 Munich
Bayern Munich’s chief rival in the local region is 1860 Munich. Generally speaking, Bayern Munich is seen as being the club of the establishment, whereas 1860 Munich is seen as being the club of the working class. With that said, Bayern Munich has plenty of other rivals as well that it has picked up over the course of its long existence.
10. Has Some Pretty Famous Supporters
Naturally, Bayern Munich has some pretty famous supporters. One excellent example is Pope Benedict XVI, who some people might recall as the pope who resigned in 2013 for the purpose of retiring, which is why he is now called the Pope Emeritus.