Ghost games

Bundesliga Weekly vol.15: Ghost games and commercialization

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In this Bundesliga Weekly, I delve into ghost games and commercialization, Fredi Bobic confirm the rumor about his exit from Frankfurt and Bielefeld sacks Uwe Neuhaus.

COVID-19 has scuttled the football fan culture, and ghost games have become the new normal. Fans are reeling from the outcome of watching games only on television. The beautiful game has lost its beauty and flair amid the commercialization we now face.

Suddenly, clubs operate parallel to a home-grown fan base. Long term, it appears, the fans no longer matter. Commercial viability for the clubs has taken primacy over a romanticized fan identity.

The opinion piece in Welt encapsulate the dilemma of a fan who loves football, but has to reconcile watching from a distance as a ghost and lots more cogitation.

This is not a call for fans to troop into stadiums despite COVID-19, rather, the question looming for many, is the relationship between the clubs and fans symbiotic? Is there synergy or vision?

The signs of a crumbling relationship begin with the “branding” of the sport. Players and officials look like mercenaries without loyalty to contracts signed or allegiance to fans. Many change clubs faster than the speed of light.

The clubs privileged to ply their trade, while many fans are jobless act in blithe disregard of the circumstances. The least they could do is show solidarity with the average Joe. Instead, many had fresh haircuts and left hairdressers’ who were out of work during the embargo wondering, who is fooling who?

Football has to get back to its roots as a grassroots sport with heroic stories and communal bonding. It went global long before globalization became a buzzword in commerce and business schools.

Fredi Bobic to leave Frankfurt

Fredi Bobic confirmed the rumor about leaving Frankfurt in Sportschau this week. Activities behind the scene fueled the rumor.

According to speculation, the next destination for Bobic to work wonders is Berlin. There is a report that a red carpet awaits him in Berlin.

Maybe at the right time the triumvirate of Bobic, Arne Friedrich, and Pal Dardai known also as the magical triangle will unite again.

Uwe Neuhaus sacked and Frank Kramer takeover

The news about Uwe Neuhaus’ sack after guiding Bielefeld to the Bundesliga came as a surprise to me. Bielefeld has appointed Frank Kramer as the new coach.

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