bundesliga, 2. Bundesliga

The DFL Deutsche Fußball Liga, the DFL Foundation, and clubs from the Bundesliga and Bundesliga 2 take a stand against discrimination and to support social cohesion


German professional football made a clear statement for diversity, respect and social cohesion on and around Matchday 26 of the Bundesliga and Bundesliga 2 season (15-17 March), with the message TOGETHER! STOP HATE. BE A TEAM.

Organised in conjunction with the DFL, DFL Foundation and all 36 Bundesliga and Bundesliga 2 clubs, the campaign was disseminated in the stadiums and on digital communication channels, running in parallel to the International Weeks Against Racism, from 11-24 March.

Ball stands, match balls and substitution boards featuring the campaign logo designed by the DFL were used. The message TOGETHER! was also spread via the DFL's national and international media partners, while clubs had the opportunity to highlight their own social initiatives. 

Union Berlin warmed up in track tops emblazoned with 'Eisern für Menschlichkeit' ('Iron Ones for humanity') - part of the club's 'Welcome to Football' campaign that uses football as a tool of social integration for refugees. At Borussia Dortmund's Signal Iduna Park, BVB captain Emre Can held a scarf sporting the message, 'Together against racism', standing alongside Eintracht Frankfurt's Kevin Trapp, who marked his club's anniversary with a board displaying the message, '125 years of tolerance, diversity, integration'.

In Bundesliga 2, Hertha Berlin highlighted their stance on sexist, racist and anti-LGBT attacks. Among others, Nuremberg and St. Pauli celebrated diversity and social inclusion with various pre-match activities, including wheelchair basketball. 

"We know the comments on the internet and social media," explained Bayern Munich skipper Manuel Neuer after his team's game in Darmstadt. "Sport has a function as a role model, and I think there is respect among the teams and different Bundesliga clubs. We try to project this to society, and enjoy doing so."

Watch: Manuel Neuer on the DFL's 'Together' campaign

The campaign weeks have been accompanied by extensive digital activation designed to raise awareness of prejudice and discrimination in everyday life. A particular focus here is on awareness for discrimination across all dimensions of diversity – including age, ethnic origin and nationality, gender and gender identity, physical and mental abilities, religion and ideology, sexual orientation, and social background.

- DFL Deutsche Fußball Liga

The themed matchday with the motto TOGETHER! complements the continuous and diverse social commitment of German professional football. An overview of the initiatives and sponsored projects of the 36 professional clubs, the DFL and DFL Foundation can be found at bundesliga-wirkt.dfl.de (in German) – also in the form of a landing page that summarises activities relating to TOGETHER!

- DFL Deutsche Fußball Liga

The DFL Foundation will also be holding a digital talk on 21 March from 12:30 to 1:45 p.m. CET with Tobias Abel (Diversity Manager, VfL Wolfsburg), Deborah Levi (Olympic champion in two-woman bobsleigh and UEFA EURO 2024 ambassador for Frankfurt), Nina Reip (Sports & Politics Officer, German Sports Youth) and Burak Yilmaz (freelance educator and author). The panel discussion on the topic of “Stopping hate, living diversity: tips for everyday life in sport and society” will be moderated by diversity expert Johanna Mühlbeyer. If you are interested in joining the talk online, you can register here (please note, the talk will be conducted in German).

- DFL Deutsche Fußball Liga

International Weeks Against Racism

The International Weeks Against Racism stem from an initiative of the United Nations. Two weeks around the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination on 21 March have been chosen as the period for the campaign, in which Stiftung gegen Rassismus calls on figures in civil society to take a stand against racism and discrimination. In 2023, the DFL and DFL Foundation as well as the clubs of the Bundesliga and Bundesliga 2 have already supported the initiative with the message “STOP RACISM”.