Not only in Stuttgart, but also in other football clubs, there were storms on the football arenas at the end of the season. SWR Sport asked fan researcher Professor Harald Lange of the University of Würzburg about the reasons for these surprisingly frequent emotional outbursts.
It was like a tidal wave of human bodies. When VfB Stuttgart managed to stay in the league with a last-minute goal to make it 2-1 against 1.FC Köln on May 14, just before 5:30, all the dams were broken and the angry fans were not in the arena. Longer keep closed. After the final whistle, thousands of VfB fans stormed inside from all directions. Within seconds, there was nothing left of the green grass. Exuberant emotions and joy at the rescue in Swabia.
“There have never been space storms of this frequency.”
“It was surprising to me,” said sports scientist and fan researcher Professor Harald Lange of the University of Würzburg in an interview with SWR Sport about the recurring landscape in the stadiums, “because there have never been so many storms in such a short time before .”. According to Lange’s note, Eintracht Frankfurt fans set the ball rolling after reaching the Europa League final, so to speak, “then it was captured by fans at Schalke 04 or in Stuttgart and elsewhere in the days and weeks that followed to show the special closeness to their team and their game” .
Longing to be part of the big match again after Corona
The researcher’s justification for the exuberant scenes of joy: “Of course, breaking Corona for two years has caused so much abstinence from football and such a deficit in the emotional sphere that you yearn for closeness and as a fan to be part of the big game again. Especially with the traditional select clubs, where it has grown This convergence over years and decades, says Professor Lange – and this is very exciting for him as a scientist: “It was not a consistent phenomenon. At Bayern Munich, for example, the 10th championship in a row was relatively celebrated with extreme restraint, I accepted it that way. Even in RB Leipzig, TSG Hoffenheim or at Werkself Club Leverkusen and Wolfsburg, you cannot see this passion in the form in which we are experienced in Cologne, Frankfurt or Stuttgart.”
Fans of traditional clubs like VfB Stuttgart are more passionate
Prof Lange’s conclusion: The desire to make the season finale was particularly evident among fans of traditional clubs in particular. This also applies to clubs such as Schalke and Bremen in the second Bundesliga or Magdeburg and Kaiserslautern in the third tier. “I’m glad you’re part of the whole stage, because you’re a fan and you can go along with the city, the club and the region. Even without really big successes like tournaments or European Cup venues.”
Have space storms become the norm?
This begs the question: Will we see a rush in football leagues again and again in the future, perhaps also on regular match days with special victories? Professor Harald Lange apparently denies this to SWR Sport: “It was just a brief moment, it was a special constellation at the end of this Corona season,” said the sports world, “which also came as a surprise to many officials, including security forces and police Maybe they were a little more relaxed because they were pure storms of joy, because that wasn’t out of anger.” According to Lange, opening the gates was merely a precaution for the audience in the stands.
Square storms bring potential danger
However, according to Professor Harald Lange, “It was recognized in the assessment and review that there is also a high possibility of danger when fans move, climb fences and overrun the stadium. It is very dangerous, and is not allowed in the future.” That is why, according to fan researcher Lange, “regulations and precautions must be taken to ensure that this does not happen again next season.”
In any case, the sports world in Würzburg is not worried “that a new wave of violence will come our way. It was just pure fun and, in my view, also understandable because of the epidemic.”