The Bayern Munich Phenomenon

DW Transtel | 484890
1 x 60 min

A 1:0 victory by Bayern Munich over Glasgow Rangers in the 1967 European Cup Winner’s Cup final suddenly puts the West German club on the international soccer map. Striker Franz Roth recalls: “The ball came so high over me, the goalkeeper came towards me and at the moment when the defender almost brought me down, I tried to lift the ball over the goalie. He couldn’t get to it and the ball went in under the bar. That was the goal. Fantastic! I kept the trophy overnight on my bedside table and stared at it. All night long…”
In the years that followed, Bayern Munich rapidly grew from erstwhile regional club to one of the most successful and best-known global soccer brands. Not least due to some 60 national and international titles and international star players, Bayern Munich’s current membership stands at almost 300,000. Then there are about 4,300 fanclubs and millions of fans all over the world. “What makes this club so special, isn’t winning the Champions League, it’s not the titles, it’s the inclusive team concept with the fans,” says Raffael, a fan from Puerto Rico.
But at the same time, few clubs manage to polarize opinion in the soccer world like Bayern, a club you either hate or love. Real Madrid once branded it “La Bestia Negra”, a black beast that cannot be vanquished. Jaime Carrasco, a sports reporter for El Mundo says: “There are in the world only two or three teams that have maintained such a continuous will to win over the years. Perhaps Barcelona and Madrid – and definitely FC Bayern.”
Philipp Lahm spent more than two decades “asserting myself in the FC Bayern shark pool”, an effort that eventually earned him the captain’s shirt. Why can so few players resist the call from Munich? And how was a club with such strong southern German roots able to develop such global appeal?
Club President Uli Hoeness says FC Bayern is “for many people something akin to a homeland, a substitute family”. Players, coaches and fans from all over the globe explain the global “Bayern Munich Phenomenon”. The film provides insights into the Bavarian club, its traditions, the way it sees itself, and its visions for the future.


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