Bundesliga

St. Pauli wear their hearts on the shirt in anti-Nazi fan vote

Fans of the 2. Bundesliga club were asked to vote on the design of the side's new shirts and decided to send a clear signal of their political stance.

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St. Pauli wear their hearts on the shirt in anti-Nazi fan vote

German club St. Pauli are well-known for their political statements and anti-fascist, democratic leanings and the 2. Bundesliga side have decided to wear their views firmly on their chests after putting the design of a new shirt to a fan vote. The result was a huge groundswell of support to change the logo of the current sponsor, mobile phone company Congstar, for a slogan that simply reads: “Fcknzs.”

Founded in 1910, St. Pauli are based in the port area of Hamburg, an area associated with joie de vivre and a leftist, inclusive atmosphere and the club has created a cult following in Germany and internationally. The fans have a huge amount of sway in deciding what the club does and in the 1980s St. Paul became the first Bundesliga side to place an outright ban on far-right symbolism and racist behaviour in the Millerntor-Stadion.

St. Pauli and anti-fascism

Even during the rise of Nazism in Germany, St. Pauli refused to adhere to the regime’s ban on Jewish membership of sporting institutions and continued to welcome fans from all sectors of society. In 2009, the club approved a 15-point statute in partnership with the fan base that laid out the fundamental principles of the club, among them sportsmanship, human rights, feminism and fair play.

The fans also stepped in when it became known that Wilhelm Koch, whose name had previously adorned the stadium and who was club president between 1931 and 1945 and again from 1948-1969 had collaborated with the Nazi regime. The club also has a flat ban on the stadium being used for commercial gain or its naming rights being sold to a company or sponsor.