The sun was shining and everything was set for a perfect day out, or at least almost everything. 45,300 football-loving folks amassed for this opening day Bavarian derby with a sizeable following from Oberpfalz not wanting to miss out on this historic day in Oberbayern. They brought fervour to match their side's valiant attempts on a green baize which was glistening in the sunshine under a perfect Bavarian sky.
Regional pride at stake
The anticipation could be felt - and heard - already on the way to the Fröttmaning U-Bahn station. Every stop provided a new occasion for fans of both clubs, crammed into the wagons like sardines in a tin, to serenade the platform dwellers with their identifying chansons before spilling out in high spirits at their destination.
Amid the rivalry - without forgetting that regional pride was at stake here - there was a prevailing friendship with fans arriving side by side, reds by blues, like on Merseyside. After passing through the turnstiles together, their routes split. The reds and whites occupied one corner and the blue and whites the other three. Even the hosts hadn't counted on such a large crowd as banners marking off areas of the upper tier had to be hastily removed to let even more people in. Given 1860's victory, they may not even bother covering those areas up in future.
An historic occasion
Grzegorz Wojtkowiak was introduced as one of five new 1860 signings moments before kick-off, and he made a more personal introduction in the eighth minute as he nodded the Lions in front, much to the appreciation of a stadium which had been rocking since midday. The Regensburg fans were stunned to silence, but a Christian Rahn free-kick soon broke them out of their daze. Jahn were not going to roll over after all. Nor were their fans.
Not since the 1976/77 season had so many fans witnessed an SSV Jahn game live, and that mark of 45,000 at VfB Stuttgart will now go down as the second-biggest attendance in Regensburg's history. "A day for the Jahn history books," titled the club's website. "Nobody who was there will forget this day, 4 August 2012, very quickly."
Kiraly rains on Regensburg's parade
Chances arrived to make the day even more memorable for the travelling fans as Jahn attacked in the second half. Then, the moment arrived. The red and white fans were ripped from their seats in the 85th minute when Francky Sembolo went down in the area and a penalty was awarded. Abdenour Amachaibo stepped up to the spot; the stadium fell silent. It was the chance for Regensburg to level the game and take more than just happy memories away with them from the Allianz Arena.
1860 goalkeeper Gabor Kiraly opposed him and triumphed. Twice. The happy ending will have to wait until the end of the season when Jahn hope to stay in Bundesliga 2, but the fans honoured their heroes all the same. After all, this was a day they will not be forgetting in a rush.
Tickets for 1860 Munich games in the Allianz Arena are available on the club's website and at the stadium on the day of the game, for an additional fee of €1.50. Prices start at €14 for standing tickets, rising to €36 for seats. VIP packages are available from €220. Visiting fans can also purchase tickets at the ground for €21.40 or €29.50, subject to availability.