Regionalliga Nord (1963–74)
|Folded||1974 (11 seasons)|
|Replaced by||2nd Bundesliga Nord|
|Level on pyramid||Level 2|
|Last champions||Eintracht Braunschweig
The Regionalliga Nord was the second-highest level of the German football league system in the north of Germany from 1963 until the formation of the 2nd Bundesliga in 1974. It covered the states of Niedersachsen, Bremen, Hamburg and Schleswig-Holstein.
The Regionalliga Nord started out in 1963 with 18 teams in the league, had 17 clubs from 1964 to 1971 and then returned to a strength of 18.
It was formed from the thirteen clubs of the Oberliga Nord which did not get admitted to the new Bundesliga and from five promoted clubs from the Amateurliga. The Regionalliga Nord was as such a continuation of the Oberliga Nord under a different name and a tier lower.
Along with the Regionalliga Nord went another four Regionalligas, these five formed the second tier of German football until 1974:
- Regionalliga West, covering the state of Nordrhein-Westfalen
- Regionalliga Süd, covering the state of Bayern, Hessen and Baden-Württemberg
- Regionalliga Berlin, covering West-Berlin
- Regionalliga Südwest, covering the states of Rheinland-Pfalz and Saarland
The new Regionalligas were formed along the borders of the old post-World War II Oberligas, not after a balanced regional system. Therefore the Oberligas Berlin and West covered small but populos areas while Nord and Süd covered large areas. Südwest was something of an anachronism, neither large nor populos.
The winners and runners-up of this league were admitted to the promotion playoff to the Bundesliga, which was staged in two groups of originally four, later five teams each with the winner of each group going up.
The bottom two teams were relegated to the Amateurligas. Below the Regionalliga Nord were the following Amateurligas:
- Amateurliga Bremen
- Amateurliga Hamburg
- Amateurliga Schleswig-Holstein
- Amateurliga Niedersachsen (in two groups for the 1963-64 season)
The FC St. Pauli, VfL Osnabrück, Holstein Kiel, Arminia Hannover, VfB Lübeck, VfL Wolfsburg and TuS Bremerhaven 93 all played all eleven seasons of the Regionalliga Nord. The VfL Osnabrück stands out in its consistency, having before that played every season of the Oberliga Nord (1947–1963) and afterwards also every season of the 2nd Bundesliga Nord (1974–1981). This 37-year run ended only in 1985 when the club was relegated from the 2nd Bundesliga to the Oberliga, for a year.
Disbanding of the Regionalliga Nord
The league was dissolved in 1974. According to their performance of the last couple of seasons, six clubs of the Regionalliga went to the new 2nd Bundesliga Nord, Eintracht Braunschweig, the champion, was promoted to the Bundesliga. Ten clubs were relegated to the new Oberliga Nord. The northern region was the only one of the five who chose to continue to run a unified highest league for its area, the new Oberliga Nord, not to be confused with the old Oberliga Nord which run till 1963. Two clubs were relegated all the way to the fourth tier, the Amateurligas.
The teams admitted to the 2nd Bundesliga Nord were:
- FC St. Pauli
- VfL Osnabrück
- VfL Wolfsburg
- HSV Barmbek-Uhlenhorst
- Olympia Wilhelmshaven
- SC Göttingen 05
The relegated teams to the Oberliga Nord were:
- VfB Oldenburg
- SV Meppen
- Arminia Hannover
- Concordia Hamburg
- OSV Hannover
- Holstein Kiel
- TuS Bremerhaven 93
- Heider SV
- Itzehoer SV
- Phönix Lübeck
Two teams were relegated all the way to the fourth tier:
Re-formation of the Regionalliga Nord
The Regionalliga Nord reformed in 1994, now as the third tier of German football, taking over from the Oberliga Nord which was disband. In 2000, the Regionalligas were reduced in numbers to two, Nord now covered all of the northern half of Germany. From 2008, with the introduction of the 3rd Liga, the Regionalliga will become the fourth tier of German football. The clubs from Nordrhein-Westfalen will leave to join the new Regionalliga West and the clubs based in the southern part of former East Germany which were playing in the Regionalliga Süd will join instead.
Winners and runners-up of the Regionalliga Nord
The winners and runners-up of the league were:
|1963–64||FC St. Pauli||Hannover 96|
|1964–65||Holstein Kiel||FC St. Pauli|
|1965–66||FC St. Pauli||SC Göttingen 05|
|1966–67||Arminia Hannover||SC Göttingen 05|
|1967–68||Arminia Hannover||SC Göttingen 05|
|1968–69||VfL Osnabrück||VfB Lübeck|
|1969–70||VfL Osnabrück||VfL Wolfsburg|
|1970–71||VfL Osnabrück||FC St. Pauli|
|1971–72||FC St. Pauli||VfL Osnabrück|
|1972–73||FC St. Pauli||VfL Osnabrück|
|1973–74||Eintracht Braunschweig||FC St. Pauli|
- Bold denotes team went on to gain promotion to the Bundesliga.
- The FC St. Pauli (1964, 1966, 1972, 1973, 2007), VfL Osnabrück (1969–1971, 1999, 2000) and Eintracht Braunschweig (1974, 2005) all have won the old and the new Regionalliga.
- The FC St. Pauli, VfL Osnabrück and Borussia Neunkirchen (Südwest) hold the joined record for Regionalliga titles, five each.
Placings in the Regionalliga Nord 1963 to 1974
The league placings from 1963 to 1974:
|FC St. Pauli||1||2||1||5||4||3||4||2||1||1||2|
|SC Göttingen 05||5||2||2||2||4||5||7||5||4||12|
|TuS 93 Bremerhaven||12||7||4||15||5||9||6||8||15||14||14|
|SC Leu Braunschweig||14||11||7||18|
|SC Sperber Hamburg||13||10||17||15||17|
|Polizei SV Bremen||18|
|ASV Bergedorf 85||8||8||11||11||15||11||16|
|FC Altona 93||4||3||10||8||16|
Source:"Regionalliga Nord". Das deutsche Fussball-Archiv. Retrieved 2008-01-08.
|Blank||Played at a league level below this league|
- Deutschlands Fußball in Zahlen, (German) An annual publication with tables and results from the Bundesliga to Verbandsliga/Landesliga, publisher: DSFS
- Kicker Almanach, (German) The yearbook on German football from Bundesliga to Oberliga, since 1937, published by the Kicker Sports Magazine
- Die Deutsche Liga-Chronik 1945-2005 (German) History of German football from 1945 to 2005 in tables, publisher: DSFS, published: 2006