New Delhi: January 5, 2012
With the start of New Year, Indian Football team must be thinking to start on winning note. But the way ahead is not that easy because in their first match of year they are going to face top German football club Bayern Munich on January 10, 2012. This exhibition match will be played for charity purpose and will also be registered as farewell match for Bhaichung Bhutia.
It is not that such a big club is coming to India for the first time but Indian team’s performance against such teams is a matter of deep concern. The 112 year old football club is based in Munich, Bavaria. They are best known for their professionalism as they have won 22 national titles and 15 cups.
In recent years Bayern Munich has been by far the most successful team in German football, winning six of the last ten championships. The club’s last international title was the Intercontinental Cup in 2001, though they won their fourth European Cup the same year.
• German Champions
o Winner (22) (record): 1931–32, 1968–69, 1971–72, 1972–73, 1973–74, 1979–80, 1980–81, 1984–85, 1985–86, 1986–87, 1988–89, 1989–90, 1993–94, 1996–97, 1998–99, 1999–2000, 2000–01, 2002–03, 2004–05, 2005–06, 2007–08, 2009–10
o Winner (15) (record): 1957, 1966, 1967, 1969, 1971, 1982, 1984, 1986, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2008, 2010
• DFB Liga-Pokal
o Winner (6) (record): 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2004, 2007
• DFB-Super cup
o Winner (4)(record shared with two other clubs): 1982, 1987, 1990, 2010
• UEFA Champions League / European Cup
o Winner (4): 1974, 1975, 1976, 2001
o Runners-up (4): 1982, 1987, 1999, 2010
• UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup
o Winner (1): 1967
• UEFA Europe League / UEFA Cup
o Winner (1): 1996
• Intercontinental Cup
o Winner (2): 1976, 2001
Bayern is also known for its frequently changing colors, Bayern’s, when Bayern joined MSC they played in white shirts with black shorts until 1905. MSC decreed that the footballers would have to play in red shorts. Also the younger players were called red-shorts, which was meant as an insult.
Bayern has played in red and white for most of its existence, but blue has been included on occasion. In the 1969–70 season the shirts were striped in blue and white, and the shorts and socks were also blue. A similar style appeared in 1995, when blue was the dominant color for the first time. In 1999 Bayern returned to a red and white kit.
For the 2010–11 season, Bayern has a red and white striped home jersey, white away shirts with dark blue away shorts, and all-dark blue for international (Champions League) matches.
Bayern has also been known to be involved with charitable ventures for a long time, helping other football clubs in financial disarray as well as ordinary people in misery. In the wake of the 2004 Tsunami the “FC Bayern – Hilfe e.V.” was founded, a foundation that aims to concentrate the social engagements of the club. And this time their visit to India is also a charity purpose.
Bayern’s success is always supported by a great coaching. Bayern had 17 coaches since its promotion to the Bundesliga in 1965. Udo Lattek, Giovanni Trapattoni, and Ottmar Hitzfeld served two terms as headcoach. Franz Beckenbauer served one term as headcoach and one as caretaker. The present manager is Jupp Heynckes who is third tenure after one as head coach from 1987 to 1991 and another as caretaker in 2009. His contract expires in 2013.
In last season Bayern Munich is headed to the European Champions League final for the first time in nine years that shows its current form. And nevertheless Bayern is also having some star players like German World Cup captain Philip Lahm, who will lead the Bayern side, 2010 FIFA World Cup Golden Boot winner Thomas Muller, star striker Mario Gomez, midfield general Franck Ribery, Arjen Robben and Bastian Schweinsteiger.
So it’s going to be a tough fight for Indian team which is always considered as underdog against such teams. But this time Indian team must be eager to win as they wanted to say good bye to Bhaichung Bhutia on a winning note.