A section of Dortmund fans will not be attending their club’s away game to RB Leipzig, in protest of the sponsor of the club by Red Bull.
The club is being sponsored by the energy drinking company and have risen to the Bundesliga from the fifth division since its founding in 2009.
Critics, however, labelled them a marketing vehicle for their parent company and the Sudtribune Dortmund fans’ website has announced that they will instead watch their reserve team on Saturday before listening to the match on the radio.
“The construct of the newly promoted side from Leipzig stands against everything that we associate with football,” the statement reads.
“It is scandalous that a purely commercial marketing branch of an Austrian drinks manufacturer may actually compete in Germany’s top flight. This contradicts all sporting and emotional values.
“For us, the consequence is clear: We do not buy tickets and do not travel to BVB’s away game in Leipzig.”
Other Dortmund fans will attend the match, however, and Leipzig sporting director Ralf Rangnick says the hosts could have sold “more than double” the amount of tickets that were available.
“We don’t boycott the match,” Nicolai Maeurer, a spokesperson for fan group Profans Dortmund, told ESPN. “A broad mixture of fans decided they don’t want to go there.
“With the successor club of SSV Makranstadt [Leipzig], a line was crossed and you don’t have to follow that path if you don’t want to.”