France coach Didier Deschamps (r.) praised Franck Ribery (l.) as "the best player in the world" and firmly backed his candidacy for the FIFA Ballon d'Or - to be awarded in January 2014
France coach Didier Deschamps (r.) praised Franck Ribery (l.) as "the best player in the world" and firmly backed his candidacy for the FIFA Ballon d'Or - to be awarded in January 2014
Bundesliga

Off the Ball

Munich - Off the Ball, our daily weekday feature, casts an eye over the weird, wonderful and sometimes controversial tales to have emerged from Germany's top flight.

Today, bundesliga.com salutes an impressive statistic from the FC Bayern München captain, heads to France to hear who Didier Deschamps voted for in the FIFA Ballon d'Or, and checks in with some of the many Frankfurt fans in Bordeaux.

Eintracht Frankfurt

need a point to qualify for the knockout stages of the UEFA Europa League, and head to south-west France tonight to visit FC Girondins de Bordeaux. They haven't journeyed alone to the Gallic wine capital, however, as they'll be joined by a phenomenal 12,000 travelling fans, hoping to revive memories of the Eagles' European heydays - where they got as far as the then-European Cup final in 1960. They lost 7-3 to Real Madrid CF in Glasgow that year but won the UEFA Cup - the Europa League's predecessor - in 1980. The 12,000 supporters harbouring similar dreams are reckoned by UEFA to be the highest number of fans ever to travel away in the competition.

The Bundesliga's fans are rightly recognised the world over as outstandingly passionate, supporting their clubs through thick and thin. Here's an inside look at how good they are, courtesy of the official Bundesliga YouTube channel: