1/ Thread: On the back of yesterday‘s Newcastle news, it might be helpful to explain to fans of Premier League clubs why their counterparts in Germany don’t view the football world in the same way. Why being bankrolled is not the goal & why both leagues will remain different.
2/ I was chatting to a Köln fan recently about this. For him, Köln is life - shared community, passion. He has a say in the club‘s direction along with other fans. In his words, if big wealth funds or equivalent, were to do as in England, he & others would go & watch Regionalliga
3/ PL club fans inevitably talk about Bayern‘s title wins. But to a Köln fan, this is irrelevant. Every season has its story. It could be (as often in the last 20 plus years) be about relegation & avoiding it. It could be in the 2. Liga or about Europe as in 2017/2018.
4/ To feel it, you really need to attend a game in Germany. Every Köln match is special & - in normal times - a 50,000 sell out. It’s an occasion with friends, even though you may not know them all personally. Köln has fans worldwide but the club exists for the city & community.
5/ German clubs make sure there is a ticket for everyone. Prices are kept in check, public transport in the local area is part of it. It beats the PL (in normal times) in terms of attendances. Again, you have to go, to really get it.
6/ Dortmund CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke recently said German football will continue to go its own way - prices fans can afford, exciting, dynamic football for communities. The model is sustainable & popular. Fans don’t want their club to be the plaything of a sovereign wealth fund.
7/ It would be hard to imagine Köln or Eintracht Frankfurt fans (both huge clubs who have had ups and downs) reacting to news of a takeover as Newcastle fans reacted. In fact, it would be a parallel universe. It wouldn’t and can’t happen.
8/ If you love the PL, I understand. It has a glamourous air & is wonderful packaged & marketed. But that’s just one model. The Bundesliga has its own successful model & its beauty lies not just in who wins the Meisterschale. Visit some day & discover for yourself.

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More from @RaeComm

20 Oct
1/ 🧵 ahead of Bayern-Hoffenheim (my Sat commentary game) for the world feed. Kicker quotes from #USMNT defender Chris Richards as he prepares to face his parent club. Richards says he wasn’t disappointed when Julian Nagelsmann decided not to build his squad with him. #FCBTSG
2/ Richards: “I wanted to return to Hoffenheim. In the summer it emerged that there would continue to be a lot of competition in Munich & I wouldn’t play every game for a long time. I’m not afraid of competition but it was better for me to go to Hoffenheim & play regularly.”
3/ Richards on consistency: “That’s the most important area where I have to improve, and that has a lot to do with experience. So for exactly that reason I’m in Hoffenheim to get a lot of match practice.”
Read 7 tweets
1 Aug
1/ Big focus piece on @RBLeipzig_EN coach Jesse Marsch in the Monday @kicker_bl_li magazine. He spoke to Oliver Hartmann at the club’s Austrian training camp. I’ll summarise the key points in this thread for non German speakers.
2/ The piece notes first that Marsch is not your typical Bundesliga coach, favouring openness, fun & freedom over the more usual distance, discipline & rules. Marsch immediately is “per du” with his interviewer, as opposed to using the formal “Sie” or “Herr Hartmann.”
3/ This might seem trivial to someone who doesn’t know German but pretty different for anyone who has ever been immersed in German language culture, indeed a key aspect of daily business life. The piece says this new American openness is something many will have to adapt to.
Read 10 tweets
23 Jun
Various sources say Hungary‘s Prime Minister Viktor Orban won‘t attend tonight’s Germany-Hungary game. Orban would have faced a sea of rainbow flags. Around 11,000 to be distributed among 🇩🇪 fans although UEFA denied permission for the stadium to be lit up in rainbow colours.
While UEFA turned down the request to illuminate the Arena in this way, city officials will light up the Olympic tower instead as well as the Rathaus (town hall) in the Marienplatz. Bayern München president Herbert Hainer says he disagrees with UEFA‘s stance.
Other clubs in other cities such as Eintracht Frankfurt and Köln will light up their stadia tonight in rainbow colours.
Read 6 tweets
27 Mar
1/ For Rangers fans who follow & anyone else genuinely intent on overcoming the scourge of racism, Kicker has done a long and very good Q & A with German born Nigerian international Leon Balogun. He also praises Scott Brown. I’ll translate the most interesting parts here.
2/ If any Scottish journalist friends plan on using any of it, remember this is Kicker‘s work (Mario Krischel) so please give them credit. Translation is all mine.
3/ Kicker: The person behind Rangers’ success is pretty well known, Steven Gerrard. Was he the one who last summer convinced you to move from Brighton to Glasgow?
Balogun: Quite simply, yes.
Kicker: And how exactly?
Read 29 tweets
26 Mar
1/ Due to Germany duties, didn’t get to watch a minute of Scotland-Austria. But have been scanning the Austrian papers & they definitely feel they missed a big opportunity. A game they expected to win. They see Denmark as the group favourites & feel they have lost ground. Thread.
2/ Xaver Schlager: “These are games that we should win & we didn’t manage that. 2 dropped points.”
Christoph Baumgartner: “It’s a bitter feeling to have taken just a point. We really wanted all 3 especially when you’re leading near the end.”
3/ Coach Franco Foda: “In my view we’ve let 2 points slip. Above all in our good phases of play, we’ve conceded 2 goals. When you lead twice away from home, you have to defend better. But compliments to the (Austrian) team. They were up for the fight & showed mentatlity.”
Read 6 tweets
18 Mar
1/ Mentioned to Celtic fans yesterday, a future task is identifying coaches on the way up. But to do that you need an experienced sporting division. Stuttgart for example have that. Sven Mislintat & his staff (ably supported from the top by @ThomasHitz.)
2/ What do the sporting team do? They set the tone for club DNA, way of playing, scouting, youth, making transfer policy work in football & financial terms, style. The coach is the extended arm of that overall philosophy. He has to fit those values & that style.
3/ So enter Pellegrino Matarazzo, relatively unknown American who had been on the staff at Hoffenheim. Stuttgart decided he was a fit for their way of playing, beliefs. No worries about his inexperience as a head coach at a high level. They saw a fit for themselves and acted.
Read 11 tweets

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