Borussia Dortmund is not the most trophy-winning club in Germany, and neither it is in Europe, but it is special when compared to others regarding loyalty of their fans. The biggest European clubs have tons of trophies behind themselves which, through history, drew a large number of fans, making it a custom for those football giants to brag about their fans being the most loyal. However, Borussia Dortmund can even prove that.
For many years, Borussia Dortmund has been making a sale of over 50,000 season tickets for Bundesliga matches. In their toughest season in the past seven years, a season full of disappointments, a season in which Jurgen Klopp said goodbye to the club, at the biggest German stadium, Signal Iduna Park (better known under the previous name Westfalenstadion), they made a record rating in Europe – 80.424 spectators per match! The first follow-up, one of the most popular clubs in the world, the Spanish Barcelona gathered an average of 77,632 spectators in the season in which they won three trophies, among which is the most valuable one – the Champions League trophy. The next on the list is Manchester United, which had an average of 75,335 spectators per match in the season of their return to the top of the English football, and after them the next is Real Madrid with 73,081, after whom comes Bayern with 72,882. Only 93 owners of season tickets from the past season will not be prolonging their pack on the new season. But that is not a problem for this club because the list of those waiting for an opportunity to subscribe is very long. If one thinks this is due to the club’s big successes in the past couple of years, it is a first sign that that someone has been following games of this club precisely because of those successes and knows about the club only regarding that period. That is very typical for the new generations of so-called trophy fans. The true aficionados of good football, especially of Borussia Dortmund, know that it is a love that last longer than a century. If we go about ten years back in time, when Borussia Dortmund could not get higher than the sixth place in the standings, we will ask ourselves how it is possible that precisely then, in 2004, record visiting of 83,000 spectators was noted in even six matches at Westafalenstadion. In the season behind us, when black-yellows from Dortmund suffered their 11th defeat in the first 19 rounds, 0-1 against Augsburg in front of 80,667 spectators at the stadium Signal Iduna Park, the club was at the bottom of the table. There were 80,200 spectators at their next match. It is hard to imagine any other club that is at the bottom of the championship standings, with only four victories and 11 defeats in 19 matches, to be supported by 80,000 fans in the stands of their stadium. Besides all that, in the first days after the defeat against Augsburg, even 653 new membership requests came to the club. When Dortmund fought out the final of the Champions League two years ago, already on the next day after their victory against Real Madrid in the semi-finals, 250,000 requests for presence at the final match came to the UEFA headquarters from fans of Borussia, and by the time for the very final the number went up to half a million!
This reflects just how Dortmund’s fans ‘ spirit is, a city that entirely lives for its club, which does not only support it on the stadium, because there is not enough room for everyone and not everyone has enough money for tickets. That is why on the day of a match, they all gather at Borsigplatz, where, in organization of the fan club “Total offensive”, they all watch the game on a video beam – adults, young ones, children, women, men, people of different religions and origin – united in the unique black-yellow identity. Because of that, not trophies that came and went in nearer and further past, but the fanatic loyalty of Borussia Dortmund’s fans made this club one of the most popular in the world. The black-yellow love won over fans of other colours. The black-yellow love is an example for fans of some other clubs to put a finger to their forehead and ask themselves who it is they are actually rooting for – the club or the trophies.