HomeWorldSt. Pauli, the cause and anti-prejudice club

St. Pauli, the cause and anti-prejudice club

Hamburg is synonymous with football. A city that has been at the top of German football for several decades, Hamburg’s historic relegation in 2018 took the shine off the city, throwing it into the secondary division. However, six years later, Hamburg was once again a Bundesliga city, but this time on a neighborhood scale. The San Pauli neighborhood.

St. Pauli achieved promotion last week, after beating Osnabrück 3-1 at home. Toward Images from the end of this match. went around the world, with fans invading the field of play after the referee whistled the end of the game. The emotion and scream that those people carried in their chests for the last 13 years could finally come to light. This Sunday St. Pauli can seal first place and win Bundesliga 2. at the WehenWiesbaden home game.

However, the history of this century-old club that was born in a neighborhood of Hamburg goes far beyond 2024 and is far above football. But let’s go in parts. FC St. Pauli started as a football department called Hamburg-St. Pauli Turnverein 1862 and, according to legend, he appeared on a drunken night in a bar in the city. St. Pauli as we know it today was officially founded on May 15, 1910, although it was not registered as an independent club until 1924. Its registration at the Hamburg District Court dates back to May 25, 1925. Since its origins , the club uses brown and white as its main colors.

Official matches began in 1909/10, then in a championship equivalent to the Hamburg district, in which secondary club teams from the first division participated. In the opening match, against SC Germania, St. Pauli won 2-0, despite having only ten players available. This season was also marked by the first matches played outside the city of Hamburg, which even reached Denmark. Thus began the growth of a club that had all the conditions to be great.

On a sporting level, St. Pauli was known in the 40s of the last century as the “miracle team”, since it took a while to reach the top of regional football but, when it got there, it established itself as one of the best. . teams from northern Germany. It was at this time that the rivalry with Hamburg intensified. In 1947, the pirates They achieved the first title in their history, winning the Oberliga Hamburg. That year the team refused to participate in the regional championship, losing the favor of the city’s fans.

At the end of the 1962/63 season the Bundesliga appeared, but the German Football Federation (DFB) did not allow St. Pauli to participate in the new first division of German football. At that time the team had to return to the North German Regional Championship, which it won the first year. After 11 years in regional football, you pirates They achieved their long-awaited arrival in professional football, reaching the Bundesliga in 1977.

As expected from an inexperienced team with only a few years of professionalism, the first stages were not easy and, in the first season, St. Pauli finished in the last places, ending up relegated to the division. The following year, the DFB revoked the club’s license, which returned to the Oberliga North, at this time equivalent to the German Third Division. It was not until 2001 that St. Pauli managed to recover and compete in the Bundesliga again.

In the 2000/01 season, St. Pauli was the main favorite for relegation, but, surprisingly, the Hamburg team achieved the long-awaited promotion. However, as expected, the following year the storm arrived. With only four victories throughout the season, the pirates He returned to the Second Division. The club once again risked losing its DFB license due to financial problems, but managed to hold on… for a short time. The second consecutive decline came with 17 defeats in 34 days and the penultimate position at the end of Bundesliga 2.

St. Pauli was once again forced to restructure and only in 2007 managed to return to the second division. They remained there for the next two seasons, until in the 2009/10 season they appeared again in the elite of German football. Even so, the stay was short. The season was intermittent and ended with the club in last place and saying goodbye to Holger Stanislawski, a coach who had been linked to St. Pauli for 20 years. 13 long years in the Second Division followed and, in 2024, the long-awaited return to the Bundesliga, led by Fabian Hürzeler who, at 31 years old, is the youngest coach in the professional divisions.

Compared to the city rival, St. Pauli is seen as a “secondary” team, which is quite far from Hamburg in everything: titles, financial resources and associative mass. The club’s greatest achievement was the victory, in the 2001/02 season, against Bayern Munich, which, at that time, had Oliver Kahn in goal. This victory ended up being representative of what we experienced and felt in the St. Pauli neighborhood, since, on the other side, it was a rich club, full of stars and with many victories. Basically, everything St. Pauli doesn’t want to achieve.

This victory was so important that it led the club to make a historic commemorative t-shirt, titled “Weltpokalsiegerbesieger” (“winners against the world champion”, in Portuguese), which continues to be sold in the club’s official stores – that is, in passing . These are viewed negatively by a phalanx of fans, who consider that the marketing and sale of the club’s brand is a capitalist phenomenon and does not serve the community.

The cause club that uses the skull as a symbol

Off the field and far from watching the ball roll, St. Pauli is one of the most popular clubs in Germany, with 40,000 members in March of this year, as indicated on its website. The history of the yo-yo, marked by the constant ups and downs of the division, Without a doubt it is an important factor that leads the fans to identify with the club. But there is much more than that.

You pirates They are a club guided by social causes and the fight against discrimination. Politically considered a left-wing club from an early age, St. Pauli is one of the few clubs in the world that has a public stance against machismo, homophobia and racism. St. Pauli was the first club to ban far-right demonstrations at its matches and expel far-right fans. The fight against prejudice is even included in the club’s statutes.

Founded, as we have already seen, in 1910, St. Pauli had a progressive origin, presenting itself as a source of resistance to the German Nazi Party. When he came to power he demanded that Jewish athletes be expelled from the teams, a measure that the club did not comply with and resisted until it was forced to give in, faced with the threat of having to close.

It was during the 80s of the last century when the “cult club” truly began to have this definition. A group of fans known as the “black bloc” began gathering in the stands at Millerntor Stadium, after the city was seized by discussions about abandoned land occupied by homeless people and workers. From there on, The fans led a movement that aimed to expel fascism within the fan base, prohibiting the sale of tickets and memberships to people who had ties to the extreme right.

The club’s support group grew gradually and It began to “seduce” alternative subcultures, gaining a reputation as an aggregator and inclusive club. The group sought to focus on social problems and political activism, without embarking on increasing the phenomenon. thug That was happening in Europe.

One of the members of the group called himself “Doc Mabuse”, the name by which he was known, and it was he who spread the image of the skull and bones flag in crossed format throughout the stadium and the club, in One day he was traveling to a St. Pauli game and, upon finding a flag with a skull on it, he decided to pay for it and take it inside the stadium. The flag was, at the time, a symbol of farmers, being linked to the tradition of pirates. The symbol was intended to convey the message of “poor against rich” and “workers against bosses.” gain the empathy and sympathy of the poorest and most oppressed. It took a while for the symbol to be recognized by the St. Pauli management, but in 1989, the club allowed fans to create a stand-alone store, which quickly went viral. Years later, the club bought the license for the symbol and, from then on, earned the nickname piratesmaking this a trace of its history.

The brand image is iconic, but in the neighborhood where the club thrives, the ideas run much deeper. The flag with the pirate symbol is included in the mission of the club which, in 2009, became the first German emblem to adopt a series of guiding principles, approving a resolution at the general assembly held each year. These principles include promoting the interests of members, employees, volunteers and supporters, promoting tolerance, respect and social responsibility.

This is also one of the missives from St. Pauli fans. When we watch a game of pirates, what stands out the most are the flags used by fans, ranging from Che Guevara, to the rainbow of the LGBTQIA+ movement, to messages against capitalism and the Nazi period. Additionally, the players enter the field to the sound of Hell’s BellsAC/DC, and when the goals are scored, you hear Song 2Blur, club style punk. As part of this inclusion, St. Pauli even had an openly gay president for eight years. Caorny Littman was linked with promotion to the Bundesliga in 2010.

More recently, St. Pauli became the first club in the world to make public its report for the common good, which is an audit of corporate social responsibility. In this report, the pirates They scored above average and appeared alongside pioneering sustainability organizations such as Greenpeace and Voelkel.

The main projects developed by the clubs include the non-inclusion of a sponsor related to sports betting, the creation of guidelines for diversity, gender parity in their Supervisory Board, the sale of ecologically sustainable products produced at a fair and the implementation of vegan and organically produced sausages in its stadium. Although its sporting future is a great uncertainty, St. Pauli’s future seems to be well secured.

Source: Observadora

- Advertisement -

Worldwide News, Local News in London, Tips & Tricks

- Advertisement -