a great new German fan owned club -and they are visiting FC !!

Below is an incredible story from Hamburg -and a warning that even the Bundesliga is open to abuse if the fans are steered in that direction………..

Hamburger Football

In case it does not open -here is the article Copied and Pasted

Hamburger Football-Club Falke e.V. – Defenders of the faith!

A prophet has no honour in his own club! This is probably the closest way to explain the drama that happened to a lot of active supporters in Hamburg a few months ago. At their AGM in May the members of Hamburger SV had decided to turn their 100 % members owned club into a limited company and to sell shares to investors. Therefore they gave up most of their own democratic rights.

But why had it all come so far? Especially at a club, that had often been referred to as a European role model for fan ownership in professional football club. In the past few years leading members of the roof organization HSV Supporters Club were invited to several meetings all over Europe to discuss and present their structures. Founded in 1993 by 34 guys the numbers of supporters had exploded over the years. With 55.000 members it is now by far the biggest fan organization in Germany, having own offices in the stadium and 15 full-time employees working for the club. Everybody respectfully looked up to northern Germany – except the people in Hamburg themselves. They took pretty little notice of this feedback and didn’t seem to be bothered by what many saw as something irrelevant views “that don’t win us any titles”.

To understand this attitude you just need to have a look at the recent history of the club. HSV are easily one of the most successful and best supported clubs in the country. In 127 years the club has always been in the top flight of German football, an achievement that is second to none and led to the club being called the Dinosaur. HSV were crowned German champions seven times, won three German cups, added one European Cup Winners Cup and even one European Cup to their trophy room. But all this happened in the bygone days of yore. Believe it or not, but the “Rothosen” haven’t won a major trophy since 1987 when they beat second division team Stuttgarter Kickers to bring back the German Cup. The last league title even dates back to 1983. For a club of this size and popularity such a record is nothing less than a total disaster. It is the result of a shambolic club policy over the last three decades. Anyway, after 27 years of suffering the demand for any kind of silverware is probably higher than at any other club in Germany. Sadly the board of directors had also turned the club into a financial minnow by the time. Ridiculous transfer fees and wages had been spent on ageing players like Ruud van Nistelrooy, who by then had already passed their zenith. Failing to qualify for Europe four years in a row and getting hammered 1-5 by footballing giants Hoffenheim in the opening home game of the 2013/14 season were the straw that broke the camel’s back.

Things needed to be changed and they needed to be changed quickly as the club dropped down the table and was close to being relegated for the first time ever. Ernst Otto Rieckhoff, former member of the supervisory board and ironically himself jointly responsible for the failures of the past came up with an initiative called “HSV Plus”. This concept blamed the club’s “old fashioned” structures for all the mess and strongly demanded a radical change by turning the club into a limited company. This – and only this – would allow generating “fresh and cheap” capital and ensuring competitiveness. Klaus Michael Kühne, a Swiss based multi billionaire and said to be lifelong HSV fan also favoured HSV Plus and announced his will to invest into the club as soon as the concept had been accepted. Against the background of people’s frustration and desperation it was no surprise the idea fell on fertile ground.  The tabloids were more than happy to jump on the bandwaggon and as soon as the avalanche was triggered there was no way anybody could have stopped it.

Of course there were warning voices. Long serving and honorary members of the club advised people not to be short-sighted. Giving up all their rights and selling away the club to an unknown future was widely seen as an irreparable damage amongst those wanting to save their club. But hardly anybody was even willing to listen to their arguments anymore. The yellow press and club officials themselves had created a hysteria that made any serious discussion about the topic impossible. The propaganda was even blaming the fans representatives in the supervisory board for the situation and branded them and the leaders of the Supporters Club as gravediggers. Hard to take for the poor guys who had given everything for their club.

In the end the outcome of this never came as a surprise. More than 12.000 members had turned up for the AGM on the 25th of May 2014. HSV Plus needed a majority of 75 % to come through. They even got 87 %. Modern football had won. The turkeys had voted for christmas.

The 13 % who had stood their ground faced an almost hostile atmosphere. Apart from the result this vote had clearly divided the membership into two completely separated fractions of a different breed. And there was hardly a chance this would ever be fixed. Things just would never be the same again.

Later that night a group of around 20 faithful met in a pub. These men and women had followed their beloved club over land and see for ages. Some of them hadn’t missed a single home game for more than 30 years. Most of them had also been engaged within the HSV supporters club, organizing away trips and football specials, setting up functions or working for the HSV museum on a voluntary basis. All of them were still shellshocked by the events of the day and looking for a way to deal with the situation. It felt like losing a close relative. Taking the result as a fact, getting back to normal and pretending that nothing had happened was never an alternative though. But what to do?

It took a good couple of drinks and mourning and mourning and drinks before someone suddenly came up with it: Why don’t we just make up our own club? With our own rules and values. With our own people. A real football club. Back to the roots! Like FC United of Manchester.

The depressing and negative atmosphere began to change into a more positive mood. Everybody was hooked!  After having sobered up the following day a first meeting was announced within a week. And they were all there! Unlike many projects that are born in a late pub night this one seemed to be serious. No one had ever founded a club before though, so a lot of work needed to be done. The following weeks were basically spent on organizing the project, getting information together and asking interested people to join in.

The most important question was the name of the new club. As everybody of the group had a long and personal HSV background it was pretty obvious that this should reflect in the name. It only needed a short discussion before the choice fell on Hamburger Fussball-Club Falke.  HFC and FC Falke (=falcon) were two of the three clubs that merged in 1919 to found the famous Hamburger SV. The third club SC Germania was the biggest and oldest of the three and there was no way it could’ve been left out. It just didn’t fit into the new club name as this would’ve created a real tongue twisting monstrosity. The solution was the adoption of Germania’s original club motto: “Dankbar rückwärts – mutig vorwärts”. This could be translated as “Gratefully looking backward -Boldly going forward” and perfectly represents the intention and idea of HFC Falke. Nobody wanted or could deny his roots, but everybody was also happy and ready to move forward and enter this new stage of life. HFC Falke was never intended to be an Anti-HSV-thing. It was and is supposed to be a spiritual home and alternative for those who didn’t want to live up to the recent developments at their once beloved club. HFC Falke is a positive thing and a project that is well worth fighting for!

This fundamental idea of respecting the traditions while creating something new persisted throughout the whole founding process. This is also clearly visible in the club badge. The black-and blue design of the coat of arms is a reminiscence of the design of the first kits worn by SC Germania back in the 19th century. A falcon and a banderole with the clubs name had also been elements of Falkes and HFCs original club badges.

In contrast to other clubs or companies HFC Falke have not restricted the private use of their badge. In order to encourage people to produce their own stuff and spread the word HFC Falke have made the original badge available for free download on their official homepage www.hfc-falke.de.

Another important thing to be sorted was the statutes of the association. This was a mandatory thing requested by the law and had to contain the purpose of the association. Apart from this the paper also includes some important passages:

  • The club kits shall only be designed in the club colours black, white and blue. A change for external interests is not possible.
  • There will be no active member recruitment by the club. New members should join by their own interest and motivation only.
  • Members can only vote at the assemblies. There will be no postal vote.
  • No facilities of the club will ever be named after sponsors.
  • The club will never be changed to another form of organization. A sale of shares therefore is prohibited.

The club was finally registered at the local district court on June 19th. This is also the official founding date as it corresponds to the year 1906 when FC Falke once were founded.

The founding assembly took place in July at one of the lecture halls at the University of Hamburg. Almost 400 people turned up and became members of HFC Falke. An overwhelming result regarding the fact that the club had no manager, no team and no ground to present yet. One of the highlights was Stuart Dykes speech about the history and development of FC United of Manchester. It was inspiring to see what you can achieve with heart and passion. Stuart received standing ovations for his fascinating presentation which was then topped by inviting everybody to a FCUM match. So if you were wondering about the 80 pished up Germans at 08. November for a Homegame against Witton Albion you now know who’s the one to blame.

HFCF will start playing  2015/16 in the Kreisklasse which is the ninth and lowest tier in the football pyramide. The club is actually in talks with Altona based junior club SC Union 03 about sharing their ground. The Rudi-Barth-Stadion is an old traditional ground with loads of uncovered terracing, a social club that offers a great view onto the pitch and it is only a five minute walk away from the next train station. The contract will hopefully be signed by the middle of November. By the time this article is written HFC Falke have also found a manager. Nils Kuntze-Braack, who also made the trip to Manchester today, is an absolute expert in Hamburg junior football and also well connected. The club can be more than happy to get him on board. His task is to find the coaching staff and to select the right players for the first team now.

There’s still a long way to go and a lot of work to be done until next July. But you can already say that it’s absolutely worth the effort. And when the whistle blows for the first kick-off in the history of HFC Falke you can be sure that some tears will be shed.

his time it will be tears of joy!


On behalf of HFC Falke e.V.


Breaking 2000 km and reaching England, feat. Night Rider!

After the wonderful FC-related visit to The Netherlands I still had to go through both Belgium and France before entering England, home of Manchester and Broadhurst Park, my final destination.

After the night-marish ride from The Hague to Vlissingen in Zeeland, I had a very easy and short stretch of 40 km into Belgium and Bruges. Bruges is a lovely city with a very beautiful and romantic inner city core with old buildings, tourists taking snap shots, beautiful canals, horse carriages and narrow alleys filled with belgian chocolate, waffles, musketeers doing weird computer art and of course belgian beer! I spent an extra night there, resting up and giving my taste buds a treat.

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Before I could experience all that though I got myself locked inside the toilet. The door handle fell off from the inside and I had no way to get out. However, thirty minutes later I was expelled from my prison. After trying many things including a sawed-off razor, I finally was able to use a pair of     scissors to open the door from the inside. Not exactly McGuyver but close enough 🙂

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After Belgium and Bruges I headed straight to Calais, a quite long stretch of 134 km. Just a few kilometers from the border to France all the cycle lanes disappeared and the rest of way through France I had to make due with riding on the road together with all the cars. It was quite alright though and I guess a good way of preparing for biking in England. I also broke a spoke on the way but some duck tape fixed it right up. I’ve been quite lucky with the bike so far. No flat tires and no major break downs. Knocking on wood.bild 2

I arrived in the late evening and basically just slept and got ready for boarding the ferry to Dover in the morning. I got on a late ferry due to a sleep-in and arrived in England around 14.30.

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Another blunder was that I thought that it would only be about 60 km but it was actually more like 90. I also had to fix the spoke and therefore did a bike check in Dover. While I waited I had a long awaited cask ale!

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All in all, I left Dover around 16 and wondered if I was gonna make it to Gillingham before dark. Well, I didn’t. Not even close. The route mostly consisted of small roads which meant I had to stop and navigate quite a bit. The first 30 km took me more than 3 hours due to navigation malfunctions and when I headed out of Canterbury it was already starting to darken. The last 30 km I couldn’t hardly see anything and had to use my head lamp in order to look for pot holes and the road ahead. On top of that it started raining. But in a way I liked it. It was a nice challenge and it felt a bit adventurous.

During the hours of darkness I got in on a small biking path taking me past a few houses, each having an angry dog barking at me. One or two houses had the gates open so the dogs started chasing me while I was pedalling like crazy in the dark, neither seeing the crazy dog nor potential pot holes in the road. It gave up after a while though but it wasn’t the most pleasant of encounters so far. I also got really scared by a big horse that suddenly appeared on my right side on another dark and narrow dirt road.

The temperature hit 9 degrees Celsius at the lowest and when I arrived about 23.15 I just went straight for the hot shower. Well deserved!

The day after was more of a easy ride for me. After riding about 25 km I met up with Graham Voaden, a fellow FC fan, who is going to accompany me on my last few days up to Moston. We were initially going to meet at a cyclo park where they had some BMX competition but since Graham made a navigation error (I know the feeling) we decided to meet up att Dartford FC’s home ground instead to watch a match of non-league football. I had time to check out the BMX-surroundings but as it was mostly crowded by young adrenaline-pumped teenagers I decided to move on. I’m getting old, I realized.

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We finally met up at Princes Park, Dartford’s home ground which is quite spectacular. They have a grass roof and has built the ground with sustainable material as well as doing water recycling and a lot of other environmental considerations. The match was quite flat, a 0-0 draw, but we had some good beer and started to get to know each other a bit.

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We then went through London, which of course took a long while but the trip felt shorter due to Graham’s stories on the way. Tower bridges, cathedral’s and other monuments aside my highlight was the view of a little pub that had been the place where a lot of Manchester United gathered after an academy game away to Charlton on the 13th of May 2005, the date for the hostile take over of United by the Glazer’s. I can just imagined what was said and felt that day.

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Tomorrow we head up towards Moston and it will take us four days to finally reach Broadhurst Park. We will arrive on the 28th in the evening. Join us if you like!

We’re also planning a cerimonial bike ride from Broadhurst Park to Stalybridge before the match on saturday. More details here!


Donation count: 16 836

Kilometer count: 1994 + (134 + 91 + 70) = 2289 km

The Orange FC United experience

As I’ve finally arrived to England, spending a rest day in London, I finally have computer time enough for updating this blog. I’ll probably make two or three blog posts out of this since there’s been quite a few nice moments during this time. First I just have to say thank you for all the great donations that has poured in upon my arrival to England. I wanted to reach 15000 SEK before entering England and it happened and more. Now we’re up to 16 863 SEK which make me think that the goal of 20000 SEK to Doctors without borders will probably be realised! 🙂 To help the cause further, donate here!

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The Netherlands, home of tulips, mills, canals and locks, was all about FC as it happened, since I met three (soon to be five) very passionate FC United fans.

Last time I wrote I had just arrived to my friend Renske in Zevenaar, which now feels like ages ago. I had a very lovely time in Zevenaar, just resting up and catching up with my dear “cuban” friend. Renske is also one of those people that I’ve met during my travels that has made a serious impact on me and whom I’m extremely grateful to call a friend. She’s smart, funny, beautiful and on top of this generous enough to let a dirty, sweaty swede crash there for a few days. Thank you Rens, I’ll be sure to return the favor in Sweden soon enough!

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After Zevenaar I went to Culemborg and since the biking in the Netherlands is so easy nothing really exciting happened on the road. But driving along the canals is a very nice way to spend your time, I have to say.

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In Culemborg I had my second FC-related encounter during my trip. Here I met Rob Young a young dutch guy who’s been following FC from the start as well as working with the Armchair Army and doing quite a few trips to watch FC. I had a wonderful time with Rob and his parents who showed me great hospitality.

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They lived on the country side in an old farm establisment and when I arrived Rob warned both about his half-crazy and dangerous rooster and his not so visitor-friendly dog. But in the end I survived 🙂

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Rob took me on a guided bike tour around Culemborg which was a very beautiful, old “free city” and a very calm one as well. Even though it was a friday night I hardly saw a soul.

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I left Culemborg the morning after together with Rob who biked alongside me the first 12 kilometers. Always nice with some company on the lonely roads! 🙂 Thanks for the hospitality and good luck with your travels Rob!

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Next destination The Hague, where the FC Tour continued. I met up with Ruud van de Graaf, who is a fan-owned football enthusiast as well as a guest blogger on this blog. You should definitely check out his facebook pages: “The Fan Owned Football Community” and “The Romance of Football” if you haven’t yet! Lots of great material from the non-profit focused world of football.

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I arrived to a warm welcome by Ruud and his lovely family. Ruud’s wife Malena is peruvian and the way they met is a beautiful story which is not for me to tell though but what I can tell you is that she had prepared a wonderful dish of peruvian food for me which I was very grateful for. In the evening me and Ruud hit the beach boulevard of The Hague and unbeknownst to us there was a fire work festival in town which illuminated the night even further. Talking with Ruud is a great pleasure since he knows a lot about the weird, wonderful side of the football world. The next day Ruud showed his excellent tour guide skills as he showed me around the city and all it’s great sites. But the highlight was a small art gallery with a great panorama of the old village of Scheveningen, an absolute must if you’re ever in the Hague.

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After the tour we were joined by another FC Fan, Richard Parkinson as we listened in on the first FC match on the season through FCUM Radio. Richard had just moved (actually on the same day) to The Netherlands and despite that found his time to meet up with us for a short while. A very nice, easy-going man it was a pleasure to meet.

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Three nationalities, one club – FC United really represent the beautiful side of football. A club which is owned by us, it’s members and which has the power to unite people from all over the world. I’d never would have met Ruud or any other of the great FC fans I now know hadn’t it been for this club. With all the other bigger clubs you are more and more treated like customers, with FC United you are a part of the family, a family that just keep on growing! Just look at the soon to be Peruvian Branch below?! 🙂

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I left The Hague the next day very happy with the memory of the warm and loving van de Graaf family!

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The last day and night in Holland proved to be the toughest leg of my journey so far. 120 kilometers along the coust with a lot of strong wind coming from the sea as well as 4-5 crazy rain storms where the strong wind made the rain drops feel more like hale than water.

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Luckily I met two very funny dutch girls on the way who made the last 25 km feel like nothing. They had set out for a 100 km journey as a challenge for themselves and I’m happy to tell you that they made it!

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The day after I finally made it to Belgium, but that is another story!

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Donation count: 16863/10000 SEK

Kilometer count (until Bruges, Belgium): 1669,5 + (82 + 81.5 + 120 + 41) = 1994 km

No Tourists But Co Owners: The International Attraction of An English 7th League Team

Over the years of its short existence FC United of Manchester have received an unparalleled amount of attention, given the level that they play at: the Northern Premier League ( the 7th tier of English football). Of course there are numerous reasons for the wealth of articles and (international) documentaries, first and foremost  the fact that they left the most popular club in the world – Manchester United – to build their  “world of our own”.

More than enough has been said about the how and why of the coming into existence of “the rebel club” or “the other United” or even “little United”, both sense and nonsense, but one thing the two teams do have in common is their attraction to foreign fans. With Manchester United it is even one of the reasons why many diehard fans left and joined FC United of Manchester: the endless stream of camera selfie flashing, fortune seeking tourists who only seem to want one thing, be there and gape at the stars. Then go home to tell about it at the office or other workplace, gloating over the pictures that they have taken prematch, during the whole match, and after the match.

Likewise FC United of Manchester attract a great deal of foreign attention, albeit of a rather different kind. Like its big stepbrother it has its international branches, such the German, Polish and Nordic branch. There are visits from likeminded clubs, like Cap de Cuidad de Murcia from Spain and Skt Pauli from Germany. And there are individuals from all over the world who one way or another have been hooked by the FC United feeling and are willing to go long ways to vist  “their”  team.

Coincidentally this weekend will almost bring together the two of the most remarkable foreign fans/co owners, Linus Lind and Ming Fan.  Almost, because the day after the one has left for China again after a 9 day stay with four games to watch, the other one will arrive on  his bike at the almost finished site of the new Broadhurst Park Stadium in Moston, one of the few fan built stadiums in the world ( but that’s another story again).

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Linus Lind is a psychology student from Uppsala, Sweden, who has been along as a fan for a while and has already visited a respectable number of games, given the distance. This summer he took it upon him the embark upon a Bike Ride for Charity – Doctors Without Borders, a worthy cause – taking him through 7 countries and to the doorstep of the new stadium of his favourite team. Linus is not your typical endurance athlete, looking for the ultimate challenge. In fact he is an easy going, intelligent and well mannered Viking, not with the physique of a bike rider, but rather a compact defensive midfielder. He loves good food, a beer or two and salsa and of course he is raving mad for setting out on this trip.

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However, if this is not remarkable enough in its own way there is at the same time an even more unlikely visitor. It is  Fan Ming,  Ming Fan for many a Mancunian red who are not that familiar with Chinese names,  or just Fan – a poignant contrast to the Van…s at the other United – another thirty  something old FC United fan ( pun not intended) who has travelled 9000 km to see 4 games in 9 days and will leave an indelible mark on the faithful.

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With his FC United Chinese Branch banner , his enthusiastic interest for anything FC – visiting the head office, the new ground etc. – and his charismatic personality he has endeared himself to all and everyone. When he heads home he will leave behind a lasting memory for many a reminiscing over a lager or an ale.


If the two almost coinciding visits show one thing , it is the irresistable attraction of this club with its motley crew of fans calling themselves “a rightful bunch of dicks”. The combination of down to earth, humorous Mancunian stubbornness and the fan owned principle, where everyone has an equal say in club matters, leaves ripples wherever they go – their European trips are legend – and where publicity  presents them. Not very much unlike Manchester United. There is however one big difference, the foreign fans do not come as tourists, but as co owners proud to be a part of the dream.

Making friends in Germany

Been a while since I wrote now and that has to do with the lack of a computer. I am now currently in the Netherlands having pushed through 1670 kilometers. The latest donation count was 12550 SEK which is really good. My goal is to reach 15000 SEK before I reach UK and then to reach 20000 SEK in total before the journey has ended. If you want to help me reach that goal, donate here!

I left Copenhagen and my friend Nanna around noon since we run into a thunderstorm on our last night which lasted the whole night and a little more.

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Denmark was very easy to bike in as it’s very flat, a lot of bike lanes and easy enough to navigate. I tried to find some kind of couch surfing accommodation but it was easier said than done so I ended up spending two nights in budget hotels on my way down to Germany.

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In he small town of Prasto I lost the key to my lock just seconds after I used it. Still can’t wrap my head around that disappearance. That took me to a bike shop where I also took the time to do a bike check. They repaired my luggage holder, adjusted my breaks and I also had to change my front deck since it was pretty close to breaking.


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Germany has been a great experience since I decided to couch surf the whole way through the country. I met so many different people with different interests and backgrounds and it made me really appreciate how great it is to travel with couch surfing.

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First stop was Neustadt-in-Holstein where I spent two days with a great guy called Florian who happened to be a huge Tolkien-fan and told me everything there was to know about the ages of Tolkien and the genealogy of different races. Very interesting since I’ve always liked fantasy quite a bit myself.

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We added a few flagons of beer and thus a recipy for a great night was set.

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In the morning Florian had to go to Kiel for a study session and I tagged along and then had the opportunity to meet up with Sebastian Kristen who’s been following FC United for a while now. As a German he has no shortage of great football in his own country but still British football drew him in thanks to the traditions, culture and the great song tradition found on the British Isles. It was a very interesting talk centered around the development of football these last few decades and since Sebastian has written a thesis on the subject he knows a lot about it. The thesis took Manchester United as a case study and an example as to how football clubs rooted in working class tradition transforms in to gigantic business machines. He also addresses FC United as an example of what can be the reaction to these kind of transformations. Very interesting stuff! I’ll be sure to publish the thesis here when it’s finished!

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Next stop Hamburg where I met Barbara and her sister. Barbara was busy until 21.00 so I spent the time checking out the city park as well as enjoying a shisha break in a small restaurant just outside of Hamburg.

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I didn’t spend much time with the girls since I arrived pretty late and since they were leaving for a canoe trip early in the morning. But the time I spent with them gave me enough joy and we did have enough time for a long conversation about life in Germany. Very smart, friendly people with generous hearts. They gave me the outsider’s view of Germany, how it feels like to come from a different culture and meet the challenges of everyday german life. I forgot to take a picture of them but they sent me one from there canoeing trip and as you can see there’s a lot of energy and warmth in those smiles!

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After Hamburg I went straight to Bremen and I think that leg was the toughest so far. Lots of head wind of 122 km thanks to a very flat landscape and a pretty stormy day.

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On my way there I had one of those chance encounters that are so nice when you’re on the road. I went in to a pub to take a small break and ended up having a great conversations with these friendly guys before I ventured on.

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But I finally arrived in the city of Bremen and met up with Henning, another couch surfer. We instantly clicked and had a long interesting conversation about life over a few beers (!) and in the morning I woke up to a breakfast made for kings as Henning outdid himself when it came to hosting! 🙂

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The next day took me to the small city of Lindern but before I got there google maps played me a little prank by guiding me out on the road seen below. I tried hard to bike but got stuck constantly so I just had to suck it up and walk a few kilometers instead.

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Finally in Lindern I had another great couch surfing experience when I met Frank who lived in a great house and offered both beer and barbecue upon arrival. Frank has travelled the world as an engineer and is  a big truck enthusiast. Above is a picture from his work shop where he has got at least six different cars in different states of development. He travels around Europe doing outdoor driving and it was really cool to get a peak into his world even though I’m not a big motor enthusiast myself.

All in all, couchsurfing Germany has been so good to me. It has giving me the opportunity to look into world I would otherwise never known and I’ve been able to connect to many different personalities and characters. I recommend everyone to try it for themselves.

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Now I’m in the Netherlands and I’m first meeting up with a great friend of mine, Renske, whom I also met in Cuba. A great person and a great dancer, we reminisced about Cuba as we listened to all the great music we encountered during the trip as well as doing a little bit of Cuban salsa and some Bachata just for the hell of it.

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Will spend a few rest days here before continuing along the canals towards Culembourg and Den Haag where I will meet up with fellow FC fans!

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PS. It wasn’t all friendly in Germany. Suffered another wasp attack (third time so far, they really must hate charity bikers) and this time the little bugger left it’s stinger as a “so long and thanks for all the fish”. DS.

See you in Moston soon! I plan to arrive on the 28th of august!

Donation count: 12550/10000 SEK

Kilometer count: 910.5 + (92 + 78 + 92.5 + 97 + 121 + 84.6 + 106 + 88) = 1669,5

Goodbye Sweden, Hello Denmark!

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Now I’ve finally left Sweden! Sweden didn’t give me a very nice send-off though. Just when I was about to board the ferry a wasp stung my ear. Thank you universe!

Even so the best news so far is that we reached the target for 10000 SEK just before I left Sweden and still going strong I decided to raise the bar to 20000 SEK. I’m pretty confident that we can do it and if not 10000+ is still a great achievement. You can donate here!

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The last few days I’ve biked on the swedish west coast, met a really friendly guy who gave me free ice cream and sandwiches, tried coach surfing for the very first time, met a japanese globe trotter, ditched my tent and some other stuff, revisited childhood memories of danish beaches and the smell of salt water and finally I visited my danish friend Nanna whom I met in Cuba.

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Above we have Magnus who gave me free ice cream and sandwiches! Good lad!

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Ditched my tent at a mother of a friend. If you read this Katti, thank you so much for the Ramløsa and the breakfast! 🙂

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Kent and his wife hosted me in Båstad. Lovely couple and a great first couch surfing-experience!

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Nakamishu, the japanese bicycle rider. He even had a printed card! Amazing guy!

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Nanna was part of our scan(dinavian)-gang in Cuba and became a very dear friend to me. It’s amazing how you can meet people you click with in an instance and how it can feel so natural to hang out a month later.


So nice to be able to meet you again, Nanna! She’s a great musician as well, like her Facebook page and check her music out here:

She had cooked some wonderful vegetarian food as well. When you come to Uppsala, I will be sure to return the favor!

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The next few days will see me leaving Denmark and entering Germany. Soon the bike ride has reached it’s halfway-mark and I’m still feeling OK. A little bit problems with my back but hopefully it will sort itself out in a few days or so.

See you later!

Donation count: 10400/10000 SEK

Kilometer count: 591 + (104.5 + 114 + 101) = 910.5 km




Careful what you wish for…

Another three days has passed and I now have a day off in Borås where I’m about to meet my friend Hendrik whom I met the first time in Manchester. He’s a huge United-supporter with a season ticket at Stretford End so I bet we’re gonna talk a lot of football.

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My last three legs has been between Katrineholm – Askersund (111 km), Askersund – Falköping (134.5 km) and Falköping – Borås (88.5 km because of a small detour).

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After the first scorching three days I was hoping for a little less sun and boy did I got more than I wished for. Just 25 km outside of Askersund I went in to a hale and thunderstorm that lasted more than an hour.

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I was soaked from head to toe even though I wore my rain jacket. My shoes were more water than shoes and I took cover at a supermarket and tries to find some bed & breakfast to spend my night in cause I was so cold and soaked. I finally found one and when I started off towards the B&B the sun was shining again. The time of the evening sun has been the most precious time for biking so far. Everything is calm, beautiful and cool. Have had some amazing evening rides so far during this trip.

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Either way the B&B was very nice and the people there even nicer! When they heard I was going on a charity bike ride they gave me the room for free! Thank you Dohnafors vandrarhem!!

Hade some more rain on monday but yesterday was perfect weather all day. Changed my route from Gothenburg to Borås cause I first thought that Hendrik lives in Gothenburg when he actually lives in Borås. Was invited by another friend for a go-cart-race but didnt got there in time.

I have some reflections so far that I’d like to share: 

1) Sweden is so beautiful and a perfect place for biking. Such great and varied nature with crystal clear lakes, thick pine forests, golden open fields, cows, horses, deer, foxes, rabbits and even ostrich!!! Add to that the fact that you by law basically can camp anywhere you want and you get a recipe for success.

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2) People are very generous when given the chance. Already we’ve raised 7500 SEK and I’ve experienced similar things before when I’ve done some other fundraising. Basically people want to give but they don’t want to be guilted or pushed into giving. Present a trustworthy, good cause and an opportunity and our tendency to care for others will emerge. I think that’s also why FC United is so socially successful. Anyhow, I see this not only in donations that are pouring in both from Sweden and from FC fans but also in all the support I get by people I meet and by people online. If I ask someone for some water I sometimes end up with a few bananas as well. Lots of love to you all!

3) I feel okay physically and very good mentally. The only worry is my back which have troubled me for a month or so and keeps on reminding itself. That’s why I’ve decided to toss my tent in Helsingborg and couch surf or use hostels the rest of the way. Less kilograms and better sleeping. All the support I get on the way really give me an energy boost. I’d like to thank everyone for their kind words and cheers.

I’ve only got three more legs in Sweden. Could we make it to 10000 SEK before I reach danish soil!?

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Until next time!

Kilometer count: (111 + 134.5 + 88.5)  + 257 = 591 km
Donation count: 7921/10000 SEK

Breakdown and chased by wasps

Over 5000 SEK now. Brilliant. If we keep this up we’ll go way over 10000 SEK!

Day 2: Stockholm – Mariefred

Got out of Sthlm late due to a somewhat late night and as I started pedaling it was scorching already. Great idea Linus to start the bike ride on the hottest period in Sweden for a long time. And let me tell you it also takes a long time to navigate yourself out of Stockholm but it does offers some spectacular views over Mälaren.

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It was a great trip to Mariefred on both gravel and asphalt and through some beautiful old mill environments.

Top 3 moments of the day:

Nasir – the hero of the day

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My iPhone lost it’s touch function just outside of Sodertalje and I feared I would have to manage without it on my trip something I wouldn’t know how to since I use it for updates, navigation and such. I even managed to get on to the highway a bit later because of that. But a friendly man in a computer store in Sodertalje solved the problem. Thank you Nasir from Databutiken!

The last 30 km to Mariefred
A beauty! Great asphalt and a lot if downhill that sent me up to a speed around 50 km/h at max. I had great music in my ears and the sun was shining albeit not to hot. Couldn’t stop myself from screaming like a mad man.

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Friendly neighbours
I arrived pretty late to the camp site but I had the fortune of getting a tent place just next to some really friendly folks. They offered me power to charge my stuff, a glass of wine and some nice stories. Thanks, it was very appreciate!

Day 3: Mariefred – Katrineholm

A day mixed of small gravel roads and big asphalt roads (roads 55). Had a meltdown in the beginning but otherwise a good day fitness wise!

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Top 3 Moments of the day

Breakfast at the lake
Woke up early in the morning and had some breakfast at the lake. Gripsholm’s castle and Mariefred was visible from the beach and I could not do anything else but smile and go for a morning swim.

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Breaking down after 15 km
Apparently I didn’t eat enough the day before because I felt really dizzy and had some pain in my belly already after 15 km in the already 30 degree heat. Had to sit down eat a little and drink some more water. Was a little bit nervous over the fact thy I didn’t have much food with me and that I there was at least 30km to the nearest store. Which takes me to the next precious moment.

Chased by wasps
Hungry as I was I decided to find a shady spot and cook some food. I had just managed to unpack my mini-kitchen and a few more things when a group of angry wasps started to circle me. They were aggressive enough that I had to run away. Damn it, I thought, I need to consume energy not use it up. Since the wasps didn’t give up easily I had to run back and forth at least five times in order to get my stuff. On the last try I spilled the only water I had left which forces me to grab my bottles and run into a lone house that lay opposite the angry wasps. There an old woman invited me in and shared the fact that this was the hottest period since 1975 according to her recollection. Water I got and after that I thought I would be left alone by the wasps as well. Nope, one of them followed me at least 1 km. Crazy! But actually the wasp attack got me fresh again and gave me the energy I needed. Ironic!

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Until next time!

Donate count: 5221/10000 !!!
Kilometer count: 82 + (95 + 80) = 257

Uppsala – Stockholm

I arose early in the morning feeling stiff as a 90 year old. I quickly asked myself, was this really a good idea? The doubt in my mind was only temporary though and I soon found myself in the saddle, ready to go. I started at 8.30 already feeling that this was going to be a hot day as the temperature was already above 25 degrees Celsius!

The first 20k was mostly gravel though and I had to stop several times to figure out my route and of course I also took the wrong path a few times. I also started feeling a not-so-good sensation in my knee caps but luckily that went away a few kilometers later.

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Stopped in Knivsta (which actually translates to Knifetown in english, didn’t see any knives though) and reloaded with some fruits and yoghurt. After that everything just went smooth. In Sollentuna I found a bike store and bought a bike shirt and a rain jacket. Also got my tires pumped and that was needed. I hadn’t done such a good job of it myself apparently.

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Getting into Stockholm wasn’t all that easy due to a lot of road work but after a while I found myself in the city centre and visited a store where I had reserved a tent for my journey. That was when I discovered that I had lost my biking shirt (had attached it to my saddle bags but once more hadn’t done the work properly). Well, shit happens, you just gotta roll with it (no pun intended).


When I had almost reached my destination I ran into a friend I had met in Cuba. The world is pretty small after all. We had a good chat and promised each  other to meet up for a reunion later this fall.


Now I’m finally at my final destination for the day and have even been able to sneak in a trip to the cinema. Good day and don’t forget to donate! 😉

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Donation count: 1800/10000 SEK
Kilometer count: 82 km