Inside Danish Sport: Orange is the new yellow

ANALYSIS: Sunday’s surprising 1-0 win over rivals FC Copenhagen might just be the medicine the club needs to turn things around

Brøndby supporters are up in arms following their team’s unlikely 1-0 win away at arch nemesis FC Copenhagen yesterday evening.

Meanwhile, the 35,000 FCK supporters who turned up in Parken stadium were left to rue the missed opportunity to move clear of FC Nordsjælland in the top fight of the Danish Superliga.

With five games left, three teams are within three points. Anything can happen in this very exciting culmination to the season. Even in-form Viborg and AGF are in position to do the unthinkable in a sprint finish.

READ ALSO: Superliga title race neck-and-neck

Dour times at BIF
Leading up to the derby, the mood of Brøndby supporters was deflated.

Brøndby has taken a back seat to FCK for many years and recently FC Midtjylland has surpassed them as well.

The situation would have been even more dire had the team not won the Superliga in sensational fashion in 2021.

Many BIF fans had hoped that the title was a signal that the glory days from the 80’s and 90’s were back. Two years on and … well, it didn’t happen.

Worst possible owner
Owner and chairman Jan Bech Andersen has covered financial losses with his own wallet for many years.

Growing tired of the deficit, Andersen sold the majority of the shares to Global Football Holdings (GFH) – a US consortium that has invested in several clubs in Europe including Crystal Palace and FC Augsburg.

To many Brøndby fans, shifting ownership to GFH couldn’t have been a worse move.

The fans believe that the club differs in particular from FCK through its roots and core of volunteers.

It is the heart and soul of the club. Many fans oppose big money dictating football.

READ ALSO: Build it and they will come: the genesis of a superclub

Mediocre results
For many years, Brøndby fans have identified themselves with being a football club, not a business like FCK, which has also run leisure parks and office towers and, to some extent, fitness chains via Parken Sport & Entertainment.

However, time has not been kind to Brøndby. The economy has not allowed for the same investments into players as FCK and FC Midtjylland. Aside from 2021, results have been mediocre.

GFH was therefore hesitantly accepted, especially if it meant the club could spend big bucks on players.

For several months, the new owners and the Fan section, an association of several fan factions, have been negotiating a “value agreement”.

Those negotiations have now broken down, which has prompted BIF fans to continue boycotting the team’s games to pressure the new owners to make an agreement.

Dressed in orange
Usually the BIF fans form a yellow wall when they support their team.

In protest against GFH, many fans have chosen to dress in orange. Other fans think the protest has gone too far and take on a more supporting attitude.

The conflict is quite fundamental for supporters of any team:

Will money triumph, as has often been the case in modern football? Or will the fans force the rich owners to commit to the club’s virtues and roots?

And while it is a battle that continues to be waged on and off the field, most Brøndby supporters will be happy this morning after beating FCK and denting their title aspirations.