Not only 32 teams come together at a football World Cup, but also journalists from all continents. While Brazil opens up in Doha, the DFB entrenches itself in a department and gambles away the last sympathies.
Bernd Hofmann, Germany's fan leader, is indignant. The uncritical mind stands in front of the Al-Bayt. The DFB team has just been kicked out of the tournament. He draws his conclusion: The organizer was great, the meeting with the fan leaders from the other nations was an event and the world really was a guest among friends. Only that with the DFB, that bothered him. Hofmann would have liked to see her, but her training camp, the Zulal Resort in the north of the island, was out of reach for him.
Now, Hofmann, who had the host country pay for the trip to keep everyone in good spirits, isn't exactly the best witness to the aloofness of the DFB entourage during those unspeakable two weeks in Qatar. But the FC Bayern Munich fan is not alone in his anger. The voluntary self-isolation of the DFB, the arrogance in communication and of course the sporting performance have once again caused damage to German football that goes far beyond the trouble with Qatar.
Tran Duc Troung is always on the lookout. He wants to do an interview with Jürgen Klinsmann and he wants to see the DFB team. The 34-year-old is an editor at Zing News, one of Vietnam's major news sites. He came to Qatar for the World Cup to also report on German football. You have to know that this is a big deal in Vietnam. Sure, stars like Lionel Messi or Cristiano Ronaldo are the most famous faces in the glamor world of football.
"The Bundesliga is throwing itself into the Vietnamese market. They do a lot with us. Borussia Dortmund was just there," he says. The struggling giant BVB has indeed been visiting Asia in recent weeks, bringing Marco Reus and Mats Hummels with them. Both should actually have been at the World Cup. But fail for a variety of reasons. Bad for the DFB, good for Vietnam and the Bundesliga, says Troung. In any case, the DFL has been trying to help the 100 million country for years, sending ambassadors such as Giovane Elber, Karl-Heinz Riedle and Jörg Heinrich. Now the BVB. Something very special.
"We haven't had a European football team with us for a very long time. That's one reason why we love the Bundesliga." It can be so easy. The balancing act between Borsigplatz and Ho Chi Min City may be viewed critically in the domestic market, but it also brings football to regions where events otherwise rush by. In addition to the well-known financial interests behind these trips, it is a form of appreciation.
In Qatar, however, German football isn't interested in reporters like Tran Duc Troung, it's not interested in the tournament and the people who attend it. The association, which has been announcing for years that it will finally be getting closer to the fans, slips away and mops about the general conditions, about the long journeys to the press conferences in the QNCC, where the majority of international reporters spend their days. This is where the media heart of the tournament beats. An appearance here is part of the show, from which the DFB, national coach Hansi Flick and the players also benefit. Once again the Germans are demanding a special role.
Troung sits in the QNCC most of the time. As a Vietnamese, he does not automatically get access to all games. For the games of the German national team, he receives a rejection of his application from FIFA. The training sessions would be the only way to somehow get close to the team. But the journey to the training camp is arduous, takes forever and would take up a day of his few days in Doha. In return, he can expect a maximum of a short, 15-minute insight into the training. That's it.
The South Americans are completely different. The Brazilians receive journalists from all over the world in their training camp in Doha, provide insights, talk to the reporters and thus gain sympathy points. It didn't hurt their performance on the pitch. Argentina brings Lionel Messi to PK, Germany once Joshua Kimmich, once no player and once Lukas Klostermann. He doesn't say anything, just that he doesn't know any of the opponent's players.
"I really thought there was some connection between the league and the association," says Troung. "Why haven't there been more activities, why has it been made almost impossible for us to attend a team training session? That would be so important for the image of German football. Don't you want to be seen as friendly people?"