Bayern had just lost the European Cup final 1-0 to Aston Villa and finished the Bundesliga season in fourth place, but had at least won the DFB Cup thanks to a turban-clad Dieter Hoeneß and a 4-2 victory over Nürnberg. The match was held at the Olympic Stadium. Paul Breitner had just ended his career, while Sören Lerby and coach Udo Lattek had just started theirs in Munich – along with Karl Hopfner. He began his career at the Säbener Strasse in July 1983, as FC Bayern managing director.
To celebrate the 60th birthday of the FCB executive board deputy chairman, fcbayern.de looks back on how Germany’s most successful club has developed since Hopfner first joined. To cut a long story short: every step of the way has been amazing. “Helping create all this has been a lot of fun,” says Hopfner. Over the last three decades he has been a crucial part of FC Bayern's rise to success.
When Hopfner joined the indebted FC Bayern in 1983, turnover was €12 million. One year later the club was free of debt – thanks to Hopfner’s first major transfer, the sale of Karl-Heinz Rummenigge to Inter Milan for the then record sum of 10.5 million German Marks (approx. €6 million). And it only got better from then on. With Hopfner in charge, FC Bayern have always remained firmly in the black.
In the 1997/98 fiscal year, Bayern's turnover passed the €100 million mark (€100.47 million), eight years later in 2005/06 it climbed past the €200 million mark (€204.7 million), and even exceeded €300 million (€328.5 Millionen Euro) just a year later in 2007/08. Hopfner presented the highest turnover to date at the Annual General Meeting in November 2010: turnover for 2009/10 was €350.2 million.
“We started with twelve employees,” Hopfner recalls, thinking back to his earliest days at Bayern. Now, the nation’s biggest club has more than 450 full-time employees, who to this day each receive personal birthday greetings from Hopfner himself.
The number of members, and even fan clubs, has also taken on a completely different dimension from the figures of 20 to 30 years ago. In 1993, Bayern had 24,000 members and 720 fan clubs, but today FCB is the second largest football club in the world with 185,000 members, behind only Lisbon giants Benfica on 224,000 members, and has approximately 3,200 fan clubs.
An average of just under 31,000 spectators attended FC Bayern home matches at the Olympic Stadium when Hopfner first joined the club, a figure which grew to more than 50,000 over the course of the 90s. The peak was in 1995/96, with just over 59,000 spectators per match. In the final season at the Olympic Stadium (2004/05), some 53,000 fans came to watch FCB home games.
The construction and opening of the Allianz Arena at a cost of €340 million, by far the largest investment in Hopfner's term of office, gave FC Bayern a significant leap in the number of spectators. Since then the stadium has almost always been sold out, with 69,000 spectators for domestic home games, and 66,000 for all-seater European fixtures.
But since 1983, Bayern has not only invested in a new stadium. The club facility on Säbener Strasse has also changed beyond recognition. When Hopfner first joined the club in 1983, the administrative offices consisted of a ground floor and a first floor. In 1990 the professionals’ quarters and youth apartments were added to the complex, and in 1994 the offices were expanded by an additional level.
The next major development was the construction of the 100 metre long, three-story ServiceCenter, including an underground car park, which opened in June 2008. Additional construction work was also done on the professionals’ quarters in the same year, giving it a much more modern feel. Since then the building has been equipped to give the players optimal training conditions.
Over the years, the training facility has also benefited from a number of upgrades. Today the professionals have access to two exclusive training pitches with undersoil heating systems. The Säbener Strasse site now boasts a total of five grass pitches, and two pitches with state-of-the-art artificial turf, along with a multi-purpose gymnasium and a beach volleyball court.