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1FCNUK... est. 1st January 2006

Why on earth would anyone want to follow a Bundesliga football team? Why on earth would they be part of a club in which many use football as a thin veil to mask a desire to eat, drink and socialise? Anyone can join (hit the 'Donate' button in the side-bar to the right) and enjoy the camaraderie, the football, the beer, the German sausages and more, in any combination and any order of importance, with 1FCNUK.

Read the other pages to find out more and keep updated with news, views and occasional irreverent comment in the blog posts below.

By eck… a pre-season friendly in Leeds

May 29, 2013

Before 1FCNUK have even got round to writing a review of the 2012-13 season, we can now announce that the rumours we reported 10 days ago on social media are now official. Leeds United have announced that their final pre-season match will be a home game against 1.FCN on Saturday 27th July at 3pm.

The match is yet to be officially announced by FCN but we expect it to be so in the next 48 hours.

The game will provide Glubb with the chance to play a team who will surely be looking to improve on their 13th place finish in the Championship and provide a worthy opponent two weeks ahead of the start of the Bundesliga season.

Of course, it will also provide the opportunity for the growing band of UK-based 1FCNUK fans to watch their favourite Bundesliga team without the long trip to Germany.

A great traditional club, Leeds will surely also be a very tempting fixture for German-based fans with a sense of history and love of the sleeping giant (which is almost every FCN fan)! Lots of Leeds United history here, and the official website here.

We hope to bring more about this fixture (and the long-awaited season review) soon.

Cheated by Bayern

April 13, 2013

Just so nobody ever forgets ahead of the 1.FCN visit to Munich today… Munich are a big, big club and have sometimes been given a helping hand by the DFB. Ignore the title of the clip – Thomas Helmer, at least in this incident, is definitely not a ‘Football God'(this video example of disgraceful dishonesty in the old Olympic Stadium was clearly made by a Bayern fan).

19 years ago this month, Bayern were fighting for points at the top of the table, and Nuremberg were desperate for points as they attempted to avoid relegation. The game was poised at 1-1 which suited FCN more than it did their hosts. Then look what happened as Munich went on to win the game.

In an unprecedented move the DFB ordered the game to be replayed (even they were embarrassed by Helmer’s abd the referees lack of honesty it seems) but the outcome was the same with Bayern taking the points, this time with a 5-0 victory. The hurt was to get much worse for Nuremberg a few weeks later when they missed safety by one point and Bayern won the title by the same margin.

Let’s hope for better luck today.

Class of 2013, Classy 1.FCN

March 31, 2013

Occasionally over the past few seasons FCN have shown some real class. Moments when you actually think that the team could be something very special indeed.  Moments like the goal scored by Timmy Simons against Wolfsburg today (31.03.2013). But then players leave, systems change, referees make bad decisions (LOL) and Der Club puts in a string of bad performances.

But now we might just be witnessing a resurgence in not only the fortunes of 1.FCN but also in their ability to demonstrate the beautiful game in all its glory.

As I watched the early exchanges of the second half against Wolfsburg, with FCN already trailing 2-0, some of the football being played was tremendous – Nuremberg looked like a club with a 2-0 lead rather than a an improbable task ahead of them. At that point I was satisfied that, despite a seemingly impending defeat, things were looking up. Michael Wiesinger had come along and turned a steady team into something altogether more competitive and interesting.

All due credit to Dieter Hecking of course. He laid the foundations before leaving for an inferior team. (What he has gained in terms of his family and finances, he will surely lose in hair and sanity.) Michael Wiesinger however must be sleeping easy in his bed at the moment.  Glubb have really grown since his joint arrival at the helm with Armin Reutershahn in the winter break.

With just one defeat in 10 games since the re-start in January elevating FCN to 11th place and 4 points away from a coveted Europa League spot, there is more to the story than just a good run of results.

Much of the football has been superb. Hiroshi Kiyotake has continued to excel in midfield, as has Timm Klose in defence,  in a team steadied at its heart by the ever reliable Timmy Simmons. But FCN are no longer only these three players, and the heart now beats stronger than it has for some time.

It seems that the players were given a ‘clean slate’ when Wiesinger took over. It was maybe a case of any disputes that existed between individuals and the management being f.orgotten, any mistrust put aside. The new coaches have made up their own minds. Wiesinger himself has admitted that the foundations were laid by Hecking but he has had to build on them. It’s also interesting to see Wiesinger experimenting with the positions of players. Hanno Balitsch was recently moved to right back in the absence of Timothy Chandler and on Chandler’s return the USA international did not revert to his right back role, instead playing as an attacking right midfielder. It’s good to see some fresh approaches to the attacking play.

It is early days yet in the Wiesinger era but his approach seems to be putting more responsibility on every player, and expecting every player to be more versatile in their role. The tracking back by forwards and midfielders has already improved, but we also have to remember that Wiesinger now has a decent sized squad who are mostly fit – there is good competition for places which keeps everybody keen.

Mention also needs to made of Javier Pinola. In the first half of the season he was looking a shadow of the left-back he was a few seasons ago. Even since the turn of the year he has had a drop in form. However, Pino looks like he’s back now – solid, fearless, creative and exciting, but without the occasional petulance and errors that have marred several performances in the past. Wieinger’s influence? Maybe so.

And then there is Markus Feulner. Nobody ever doubted that he is a very versatile player. He’s looked ok at full back, in a defensive midfield role, in a wider role and in an attacking role. He has a super shot and is a tireless worker. It seems that now all of these abilities are coinciding in every game and he’s a very hard player to leave out at the moment because of his effort and ability. 

There are, of course, many more factors playing a part in FCN’s recent rise. At the moment though, most of the credit has to go to Michael Wiesinger. His appears to be a brand of football in which every player has the chance to express themselves and fully utilise their individual talents. It’s not quite Total Football just yet, and  Rinus Michels still remains untroubled as the truly one and only, but there may be a young pretender on his way to developing a group of players to have a go at imitating the Dutch master’s ideal.

Class and FCN don’t normally go in the same sentence in any language outside of Franconia. Maybe now though there is a base on which to build a reputation for a brand of football others might want to hear about.

Statistics, Damned Statistics, and a Bit of Banter!

March 28, 2013

We all like to analyse the performance of our chosen team. Often it will be over a beer in the pub. We prove our knowledge of recent performances to be far better than TV pundits and top coaches with our comments on… well on everything really.

Our expertise seems to increase exponentially with every pint we drink. It’s usually all friendly banter  but every now and then it boils over into more aggressive ‘debate’  and even the occasional offer of a duel.

But in the modern world, modern football and its analysis has in many ways become more than a few well-honed statements about the ability of players or the effectiveness of the system chosen by the coach. No longer can we safely just pass comment, because somebody, somewhere has generated statistics for every aspect of the game. And somebody, somewhere knows where to find them and unleash them on us.

Travis Timmons writing yet another excellent piece for the United States (you just knew the US of A would be involved in a blog post mentioning stats and sport) based, recently contacted 1FCNUK with a barrage of questions about Der Club. Not content to simply take what he was told at face value (Travis is obviously wise to the general ways of the English football fan) he then put it all to the test with a whole host of statistics.

Have a read of his fascinating article Who’s Afraid of Defense? .

Banter is still alive and well, and long may it live, but you can forget any physical means of ending the lively discussions from now on. The readily available statistics prove or disprove everything. Don’t they?




Who has a bet on football?

March 24, 2013

While there has been no Bundesliga and little football of much interest in Great Britain this weekend due to international fixtures and snow, 1FCNUK have been having a look at different leagues from around the world.

Does anyone out there follow other leagues and bet on them? Which is your favourite league to have a bet on? If it’s not listed, click ‘OTHER’ and let us know in the comments which you like best.

Anyone can comment so please feel free to tell us which is your favourite league and why.

20 seconds of pure beauty!

March 23, 2013

No Bundesliga today…

So just to bring a little cheer to fans of 1.FCN and fans of beautiful footballing moments, here’s Jan Kristiansen’s extra-time, match-winning Traumtor (dream goal) from the 2007 Cup Final victory over Stuttgart. A goal worthy of winning any game.

For a more detailed look at that great day in Berlin, have a look at our Pokal post from ages ago!

Fanfreundschaft minus 90 minutes

March 16, 2013


Today sees 1.FCN take on Schalke 04 – two of the great traditional teams in Germany scrapping for points. But FCN versus S04 is not just about the game itself. The most famous Fanfreundschaft (a strong fan friendship between the fans of two  teams) exists between the Franconians and the team from Gelsenkirchen.

From the perspective of a British football fan the idea of Fanfreundschaft  is almost unbelievable. Football, quite rightly, lends itself to deep rivalries. While the hatred and animosity that such rivalries bring to the game  are largely undesirable, nobody can doubt that a disregard for directly competing other teams helps to make the game what it is.
But then in Germany, and particularly with the friendship between Nuernberg and Schalke there is a pleasant change from the ‘normal’ way of thinking. I have been to many FCN games now, particularly in the north of Germany, where Schalke fans have been singing along with the Clubberer. There are so many people in favour of Fanfreundschaft between the two teams that it inevitably works so well.
I can  understand those who are not as much in favour. They have their right to a personal choice and have a personality which will not allow them to care for another ‘rival’ team in any way. It is up to the individual but it is also surprising how many go along with the concept.
Personally I like the idea of Fanfreundschaft and for that reason take an interest in S04. The friendships is nice but that does not, and should, not extend to the pitch where each team must compete for itself.
The  hope today is that FCN will be able to continue showing some good recent form and take the three points against a Schalke team who are surely tired and bruised after their defeat in the Champions League. Several of us will as usual be watching live from England, knowing that the players of both teams will be solely concerned with the points and not with the friendship. For the 90 minutes of the game, so will we. After all, Wir Sind Der Club.