What’s the Bavarian for ‘o joga bonito’?

While they won a second of three consecutive European Cups, beating Leeds United in the final, the 1974-75 season was very forgettable for Bayern Munich domestically.

They finished in tenth place in the Bundesliga, beginning the season with a 6-0 loss to Kickers Offenbach and suffering defeat on 12 more occasions. One of the few away games they won was at Kaiserlautern on May 3, but the next seven seasons would see five losses and two draws at the Betzenbergstadion (now Fritz-Walter-Stadion).

So bad was the situation that, after the 2-0 loss there in 1982-83, Bayern legend Paul Breitner said that they “might as well just send the points there” rather than fulfilling an unfulfilling fixture. However, Udo Lattek – who returned as coach at the start of 83-84, having been sacked in 74-75 – had a different idea.

Bayern normally wore white shirts and shorts with red shorts at ‘Lautern, but, in consultation with general manager and kit suppliers adidas, Lattek reckoned that if Bayern could look like Brazil, a similar performance might follow.


One area where the new look differed from the classic Brazil look was the very dark shade of green. The new kit was kept secret to such an extent that it wasn’t revealed until Bayern walked out on the field – they didn’t even warm up in it. The odd thing, though, was that, instead of the usual red, Kaiserlautern played in green, so theoretically, Bayern could have worn red.

Klaus Augenthaler’s goal, coupled with a penalty save by Jean-Marie Pfaff, was sufficient for a 1-0 win. They wouldn’t lose there again until March 1991, but Lattek seemed to have decided that it was the sky-blue shorts which were the charm as they often partnered the white shirts for games there later in the 80s.

The ‘Brazil’ look wasn’t seen again, though Bayern would have a yellow, black and green away kit from 1993-96.

1 comment on “What’s the Bavarian for ‘o joga bonito’?

  1. fateck

    Nice to know Hamilton Accies are in good company, having used both Brazil and Argentina’s classic home kits as templates for their change strips a few years back.


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