Football in Berlin

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Berlin's Olympiastadion hosted the 2006 FIFA World Cup Final, and is also home to Hertha Berlin of the Bundesliga.

Football in Berlin, the capital of Germany, has a long history. The city contributed 24 of the 86 founders of the DFB, the German Football Association.

The three main football clubs in Berlin are Hertha BSC, Union Berlin and Dynamo Berlin. Hertha, a founder of the DFB, were the only to play in the West German system during the Cold War, as the other two were located in East Berlin. A fourth club, Viktoria Berlin, were also a DFB founder member and a winner of two early German championships before a decline to the regional leagues.

The 2006 FIFA World Cup Final was held at Olympic Stadium, and saw Italy defeat France on penalties. The same stadium hosted the later stages of football at the 1936 Summer Olympics, with the other matches played at smaller grounds in the city. The ground was also a venue in the 1974 FIFA World Cup group containing both West and East Germany.

Football culture[edit]

Open Air gatherings of several hundred thousands spectators have become popular during international football competitions, like the World Cup or the UEFA European Football Championship. Many fans and viewers come together to watch the matches on huge video screens. The event is known as the Fan Mile and takes place at the Brandenburg Gate every two years.[1]

Clubs[edit]

Hertha Berlin[edit]

Main article: Hertha BSC

Hertha Berlin were founded on 25 July 1892 and were a founder member of the German Football Association (DFB) in 1900. Hertha won its only two German championships in 1930 and 1931, the latter being the last DFB league title won by a Berlin club.[2] Hertha was the most successful club in the Brandenburg football championship (1892-1933), winning on 12 occasions, including seven consecutive titles between 1925 and 1931 and the last-ever season in 1932-33 before the league's abolition by the Nazi regime.[3]

The club was a founder of the German Bundesliga in 1963, but has never won its title. They currently play in the 1. Bundesliga following promotion after finishing champions of the 2. Bundesliga in the 2012-13 season. Hertha are a tenant of the Olympic Stadium.

In 1999-2000, Hertha were Berlin's first-ever representative in the UEFA Champions League, defeating Anorthosis Famagusta of Cyprus to qualify for the First Group Stage, where they advanced at the expense of Italy's AC Milan. In the Second Group Stage they were eliminated after finishing bottom.[4]

Union Berlin[edit]

Union Berlin have played at the Stadion An der Alten Försterei since 1920.
Main article: 1. FC Union Berlin

Union Berlin were established in 1906 (despite a team of a similar name winning the German title the previous year).[5] They were runner-up in the 1923 German football championship, where they lost 0-3 in the final to Hamburger SV. During the Cold War they played in the eastern part of Berlin, the main team having left for West Berlin in 1950 to form Union 06. Despite some early mild success in post-split Germany, Union were relatively unsuccessful in East Germany, frequently changing between 1st and 2nd division. They won the east German cup in 1968. In the 1990s the club was present mostly in regional leagues (third division) and were promoted to 2. Bundesliga in 2001. After three years they were relegated twice to fourth division but won, after being promoted to third division again, 3. Fussball-Liga in 2009 to reach 2. Bundesliga. Union reached the final of the 2000-01 DFB-Pokal before losing 2-0 in the final in Berlin to Schalke 04.[6]

The club plays at Stadion An der Alten Försterei, which it has occupied since 1920. The stadium can contain 21.717 people, for the most part on standing terraces.

Dynamo Berlin[edit]

Dynamo Berlin in 1979 after winning their first of ten consecutive East German league titles.
Main article: Berliner FC Dynamo

Dynamo Berlin was founded in 1953 in East Berlin as a club for the Stasi secret police force, and was refounded in 1966 following a lull of three years without competing. Due to their connections, the club had a reputation for corruption, and won a record 10 East German titles (in succession between 1977 and 1988),[7] and 3 Cups.

Dynamo are the only Berlin club to reach the semi-finals of a major European tournament. Representing East Germany, the club reached the last four of the 1971-72 European Cup Winners' Cup before losing to Dynamo Moscow of the Soviet Union in a penalty shoot-out.[8]

After a very successful 2013-14 season, the club qualified for the Regionalliga Nordost.[9]

Viktoria Berlin[edit]

Main article: BFC Viktoria 1889

Viktoria Berlin was established in 1889 and was a founder of the DFB in 1900. The club won two German championships (1907–08 and 1910–11). It was weakened by the division of Berlin during the Cold War, as only one of Berlin's clubs was permitted entry to the new Bundesliga in 1963, an honour given to Hertha. The club currently plays in the fifth-tier Verbandsliga Berlin.

The club won the 1893-94 German Championship on 28 July 2007, in a two-legged final 113 years after their opponents FC Hanau 93 decided not to travel 400 km to Berlin on the original occasion.[10]

In March 2013 the club announced its plans the merger with LFC Berlin. The new club will compete under the name FC Viktoria 1889 Berlin, and the full the name of the new association will be Fußballclub Viktoria 1889 Berlin Lichterfelde-Tempelhof e. V. The aim of the merger is to become the third club in the ongoing evolution of Berlin football, behind Hertha BSC and Union Berlin.[11] After a successful 2012-13 season, the club finished first in the Oberliga Nordost and thus qualified for the Regionalliga Nordost.

Ethnic clubs[edit]

Berlin's oldest Jewish football club, Bar Kochba Berlin, founded in 1898, merged with another, Hakoah Berlin in 1930 to form Bar Kochba-Hakoah. Under the Nazi regime, Jewish clubs were segregated in 1933 and dissolved in 1938. Jewish clubs competed in other sports from the end of the war, but it was not until 1970 that Bar Kochba-Hakoah were revived as a football club, as a member of the Maccabi World Union which encourages Jewish sport. Now competing as TuS Makkabi Berlin in the sixth-tier Berlin-Liga, the club made headlines in Germany and the Jewish State of Israel[12] in October 2006. Despite the club's low profile and the increase in tolerance in German society, the club were subjected to anti-Semitic, Neo-Nazi chants from fans and players of VSG Altglienicke.[13]

Türkiyemspor Berlin is another sixth-tier Berlin-Liga club, founded in 1978 and composed of Germans of Turkish descent. In 2010-11, it was relegated from the fourth-tier Regionalliga Nord. The name Turkiyemspor is used by other Turkish-centred clubs in Germany and abroad. Former Turkish international Umit Karan began his career at the club. SV Yesilyurt, another club founded by immigrants from Izmir and Istanbul, was founded in 1973 and wound up in 2007 when it merged with Berliner AK 07. AK, despite being founded in 1907, have merged with various Turkish-centred clubs in its history and since 2006 has been in partnership with the Turkish club Ankaraspor, taking on their name and colours for the 2006-07 season.

SD Croatia Berlin, of the eighth-tier Berlin Bezirksliga Division 1, was founded in 1972 for the city's Croatian community. Its futsal club won the DFB Futsal Cup in 2010 and 2011.[14]

List of current clubs[edit]

Club Home Ground Capacity Founded Founded As East / West
BFC Alemannia 90 Wacker Sportanlage Kienhorstpark 7,000 1890 Alemannia Berlin West
Berlin AK 07 Friedrich-Ludwig-Jahn-Sportpark 20,000 1907 Berlin Athletik Klub West
Berliner FC Dynamo Sportforum Hohenschönhausen 10,000 1953 Football division of SC Dynamo Berlin East
BFC Preussen Preussen-Stadion Malteserstraße 5,000 1894 BFC Friedrich Wilhelm
BFC Meteor 06 Berlin Hanne-Sobek-Sportanlage, Osloer Straße 3,000 1906 Berliner Fußball-Club Meteor 1906
BSC Marzahn Sportanlage Schönagelstraße 1,000 1985 BSC Marzahn East
BSV 92 Berlin Stadion-Wilmersdorf 2,500 1892 Berliner TuFC Britannia
BSV Al-Dersimspor Laskersportplatz 2,000 1993 BSV Al-Dersimspor
Friedrichshagener SV 1912 Sportanlage Friedrichshagen ? 1912 SC Hohenzollern Friedrichshagen
FV Wannsee Stadion Wannsee 5,000 1896 Männer Turnverein Wannsee
Hertha BSC Olympiastadion 74,500 1892 BFC Hertha 92 West
Hertha Zehlendorf Ernst-Reuter-Sportanlage 4,000 1903 Turn und FC Germannia 1903 Zehlendorf West
HSG Humboldt-Uni Berlin Sportforum Berlin-Höhenschöhausene ? 1949 Hochschulsportgemeinschaft der Humboldt-Universität West
SV Nord Wedding Schillerpark Ungarn Straße 3,000 1893 Berliner FC Rapide 1893 Niderschönhausen
SV Blau Weiss Berlin Platz an der Rathausstraße 3,000 1927 SpVgg Blau-Weiß 1890 Berlin West
1. FC Lübars 1962 Sportplatz Schluchseestraße 500 1962 1. FC Lübars 1962 West
SC Minerva 93 Berlin Poststadion 1,000 1893 Berliner FC Minerva
SD Croatia Berlin Friedrich Ludwig Jahn Sportpark 20,000 1972 NK Hajduk Berlin West
SV Yeşilyurt Berlin Hanne-Sobek-Sportanlage Osloerstraße 3,000 1973 SV Yesilyurt Berlin West
SCC Berlin Mommsenstadion 15,005 1898 FC Union Halsensee West
SC Rapide Wedding Louise-Schröder-Platz ? 1893 Berliner FC Rapide 1893 Niderschönhausen
Tennis Borussia Berlin Mommsenstadion 15,005 1902 Berliner Tennis Club Borussia 1902 West
Tasmania Berlin-Gropiusstadt Sportpark Neukölln 3,500 1900 Rixdorfer FC Tasmania West
Türkiyemspor Berlin Friedrich Ludwig Jahn Sportpark 20,000 1978 BFC Izmirspor West
TuS Makkabi Berlin Maifeld Olympiastadion 2,500 1898 Turn- und Sportverein Makkabi Berlin (retains history of Bar-Kochba Berlin) West
1. FC Union Berlin Stadion An der Alten Försterei 21,704 1906 SC Olympia 06 Oberschönweide East
FC Viktoria 1889 Berlin Stadion Lichterfelde 4,300 1889/1892 BFC Viktoria 1889/Lichterfelder FC West

Matches[edit]

1936 Summer Olympic Games[edit]

Football at the 1936 Summer Olympics in Berlin saw group games and quarter-finals held at three venues in the capital: the Poststadion, the Mommsenstadion and the Stadion am Gesundbrunnen (home to Hertha between 1924 and 1974). All games after the quarter-finals were held at the Olympic Stadium, and Italy beat Austria 2-1 in the final on 15 August.[15]

1974 FIFA World Cup Group A[edit]

Group A at the 1974 FIFA World Cup featured three matches at Berlin's Olympic Stadium, all involving Chile, against West Germany, East Germany and Australia. West Germany won 1-0, although the other matches were draws. The infamous match between the two German teams, however, was played in Hamburg.

2006 FIFA World Cup Final[edit]

French midfielder Zinedine Zidane in his last-ever match, the 2006 FIFA World Cup Final in Berlin.

The 2006 FIFA World Cup Final was held on 9 July 2006 at Berlin's Olympiastadion to determine the winner of the 2006 FIFA World Cup. Italy beat France in a shootout after the match finished 1–1 after extra time. France's Zinedine Zidane was sent off in his last-ever match, for headbutting Italy's Marco Materazzi's chest in retaliation to verbal insults.

2015 UEFA Champions League Final[edit]

In May 2013 the Olympiastadion was chosen as the venue for the 2015 UEFA Champions League Final.[16]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]

Media related to Association football in Berlin at Wikimedia Commons