We All Follow The West Ham!

Dieter Fischer explains why the Cologne Hammers follow the Club all the way from Germany
Dieter Fischer of the Cologne Hammers gets to a number of West Ham games all the way from Germany. He explains his love for the Club…  
Our supporters’ club, the Cologne Hammers, was founded back in 2013 when we realised that the city seemed to have a lot of people with West Ham in their hearts as well as myself!
Our aim in forming the group was simply to show our passion for the Club and to enjoy watching the games with like-minded people. Our group is managed quite easily, with members who do not commit to anything and do not pay any sort of contribution.
For West Ham games, we normally get together in a German pub or in a more private environment, such as somebody’s home.
We do not have one physical home or base as a group; only Cologne itself. Our preferred pub for watching Hammers matches on TV is the Irish pub we have in the centre of the city.
Currently in the supporters’ club, we have about 25 members. The majority are from the city but a small selection of the members are from further afield, such as Stuttgart or Hamburg. We even have two from Switzerland!
Of course, although we enjoy watching matches in Germany, it is very special when we can visit England to get to a match at the Boleyn Ground. It varies with each individual, but the hardcore members of our group manage to get to around seven to ten matches a season. We even travel to away matches!
A few of the chaps have not actually been to the Boleyn at all yet, though of course, it is an aim for everyone who has not been so fortunate!
I have many personal memories from my time supporting the Club, and the 3-1 win against Bolton Wanderers in May 2007 is right up there. Carlos Tevez was the man who inspired the great escape that season, and it was amazing.
Carlos Tevez is up there with my favourite all-time West Ham players, and Bobby Moore is of course a legend and role model all over the continent. Geoff Hurst (who, as Germans, most do not usually like!), Trevor Brooking, Paolo Di Canio and Dimitri Payet are just a few others who we have adored over the years!
My fellow members and I are all excited to visit the new stadium, however we were shocked when we first heard the news. The Boleyn Ground and its surrounding area has something very special. It’s authentic and the aura of the times when football was the sport of the working class.
But, over the years our Club has grown and everything has changed for the good. I am delighted to say that I am also a season-ticket holder for next season at the new ground!
As a supporters’ club, we all love West Ham and that of course will always continue, whichever ground we are playing in!