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The Magic of The Pokal – Berliner Pokal 1.Runde – Saturday Preview

Que sera, sera…

Morgen! so, it’s been a quiet week on here, Last weekend was a write off thanks to Union, TeBe and North London Derby victories and this week I’ve been catching up on work missed out on due to spending too much time watching and talking about football. If you are reading this, you probably know exactly what I am talking about.

Anyway, this weekend we are given a break from domestic league football as the professionals from the higher echelons of the game play in the first, pointlessly annoying Interlull of the season. It seems ludicrous to me that just 4/5 weeks in to the new season, we are already being starved of the competitive  club football that we crave so much and being forced to pretend that we give a shit about how a bunch of overpaid and quite frankly overrated players get on against the footballing giants of Moldova.

Luckily for me and for the rest of the Berlin football supporting community, Micha Fuss has yet to be called up to the Germany squad and the majority of the amateur players in the city don’t feel the need for a break so early on in the season and with that, we have arrived at the beginning of the march on the Olympiastadion 2015. The first round of the Berliner Pokal is here and I could not be more excited.

Tomorrow sees only a handful of games taking place but this does in no way mean that there is not a great deal of mouthwatering ties for us to get our teeth in to. With absolutely no bias whatsoever, the game of the day and where I will be takes place at the Mommsenstadion (nearest S-Bahn: Messe Sud) as Tennis Borussia Berlin take on FV Wannsee of the Bezirkliga (https://www.facebook.com/events/632085026836586/?fref=ts) . TeBe fans are quite content with their teams start to this seasons BerlinLiga seeing them lose only 1 game so far. They currently sit in 5th position in the league and should be considered as serious contenders for the title. The fans should expect a slightly weakened side as tomorrows visitors from Wannsee are really struggling to gain any sort of momentum to their Bezirkliga campaign, losing all 4 of their opening matches of the season meaning that they now prop up the entire division conceding 19 goals and scoring just 4. I haven’t seen Wannsee play myself but one can only assume that we could be in for a goalfest of Club Italia 12/13 proportions.

In the days other “headline” match, reigning Pokal champions, BFC Dynamo of the Oberliga welcome SV Blau-Gelb Berlin to the Sportforum as they begin the defence of their title (https://www.facebook.com/events/184017521777150/?fref=ts) . The Hohenschonhausen side have had a dream start to this season and the belief that they could join the overly Berlin dominated Regionalliga Nordost next season is definitely there. So far, they are yet to drop any points at all and have won all 4 of their opening games of the season. The boys in Rot-Weiss will firmly believe that their sleeping giant status can be relinquished and that they can wake from their extended slumber and reassert themselves as Berlins “other” footballing power. Tomorrows guests, are currently sitting at the foot of the Landesliga table and have lost all 4 games at the start of the season. It does not take a genius to work out who are going to be favourites for tomorrow’s game and which side would expect to find themselves in the hat for the 2nd round.

Aside from these 2 matches, there are also 7 other matches taking place in the Pokal tomorrow and the fixtures for these can be found at the bottom of this post.

In addition to all the Pokal action tomorrow, there is also a slightly bizarre and delightfully pointless friendly taking place at the 2nd most beautiful stadium in Berlin (fact) as 1.FC Union Berlin welcome Czech giants Slavia Praha to the Hans-Zoschke Stadion, home of SV Lichtenberg 47 (http://fussball.lichtenberg47.de/news/kartenvorverkauf-1-fc-union-berlin-slavia-prag/). I don’t even know where to start on this other than to plead to Uwe Neuhaus not to play a first team and just to focus on getting some of the fringe players some game time. It’s been a fantastic start to the season for the Koepenickers who are exceeding expectations and sit in 2nd place in the 2.Bundesliga and it would be such a shame to get some key players injured for the sake of a friendly. There is of course an argument that a test against a good quality Slavia side will help to boost match fitness but I would hope that the “never say die, win at all costs” attitude usually displayed by 1.FC Union will be left on the backburner for the game.  A proper preview of this has been put together by the folks at Union in Englisch and this can be found here http://www.union-berlin.com/2013/09/04/here-comes-sk-slavia-praha/.

Anyway, whatever game you end up at tomorrow, I hope you enjoy yourself and that the strikers are firing, the beer is flowing and that the return of Summer from the depths of Autumn earlier this week, continues long in to the weekend. Full fixture list at the bottom of this posting and a preview of Sundays massive day of games (including an epic  3 game hop across the city) will, beer permitting, follow tomorrow.

Berliner Pokal 1.Runde Fixtures  – Saturday 06/09/2013
14:00     Tennis Borussia Berlin

–              FV Wannsee

14:00     FC Internationale

–              SFC Stern 1900

14:00     BFC Dynamo

–              SV Blau Gelb Berlin

14:00     SC Borussia Friedrichsfelde

–              Wartenberger SV

14:30     VSG Altglienicke

–              SG Stern Kaulsdorf

15:00     BW Mahlsdorf Waldesruh

–              FC Viktoria 1889 Berlin Lichterfelde Tempelhof e.V.

15:30     TSV Helgoland 97

–              Hellersdorfer FC

16:00     SG BW Hohenschönhausen

–              BFC Germania 1888

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Review: Tennis Borussia Berlin v Nordberliner SC

There were unbelievable scenes at the Mommsenstadion yesterday evening as TeBe came from a goal behind against Nordberliner SC to score 3 goals in the last 6 minutes and win the game, sparking mass jumping, beer spilling, fence climbing and air punching. TeBe dominated the game from the off but were denied by some great goalkeeping, the woodwork and some typically TeBe style finishing enabling the away side to get ahead with their only chance of the game, a break away in the TeBe half resulting in Tom-Niclas Zeih rounding Alexander Kynass in the TeBe goal and slotting home.

A team described by one of our esteemed friends as “absolutely fucking awful” following their game against Wilmersdorf on Sunday had managed to upset the home fans and the balance of play and were then set up to defend that lead for the rest of the match. This was a tactic that was eventually their undoing as the TeBe pressure built and built and built, exploding on 84 minutes as that man, Micha “Magic Mickey Foot” Fuß leaped up high in the box and nodded home the opener following a lovely floated cross in from the left from Tom Kirstein .

TeBe were clearly motivated by this goal and were very keen to push for the points that they deserved and just 2 minutes later, the team and their dedicated and vociferous supporters, were rewarded as Hamdi Chamki found himself one on one with the keeper and slotted the ball in to the bottom right hand corner sparking absolute pandemonium in E-Block. Beer was thrown in the air, “fucking Yeaaaah” was screamed at nobody in particular, high fives were passed around and there was even some fence climbing, such was the perceived importance of that goal.

This was not where it ended though, substitute Kiyam Parlak broke away inside the Nordberliner half and was subsequently tripped as he entered the box, making a meal of it straight out of Gareth Bales horrible cheaty little recipe book but that was besides the point, the penalty was given, the Nordberliner defender sent off and Micha was able to score his 5th of the season, doubling his tally and putting the game out of the reach of the away side. At Full-Time, the customary celebrations with the players were even more happy and boisterous than usual and the team seemed absolutely delighted, not only with themselves for turning around a 1 goal deficit in such emphatic fashion but also with their supporters, who sung the team home and congratulated each player individually at the end of the game.

Up next for TeBe is the infamous Gatow away trip, home of last seasons “drunkest day out” award. A boat trip over Wannsee, beers on the other side and a good selection of beer, schnapps and food at the ground make it one of the most enjoyable trips you can have in the City (if the weather is nice, anyway). On the pitch,  Gatow have been inconsistent so far this season winning 2 and losing 2 of their opening matches. They also play tonight away in Staaken.

Nordberliner won’t be too disheartened by their start to life in the Berlin Liga and can be encouraged by some of their earlier results this season. They will be worried though as to how many chances Tennis Borussia were able to create and just how lucky they were not to have conceded many more goals than the 3 that they did. Up next for them is a home game as they welcome Prenzlauer Berg’s SV Empor Berlin to Elchdamm on Sunday at 14.00.

There is a full compliment of BerlinLiga fixtures this week and some of the other games were also played last night. The results of these can be found below.

Fuechse Berlin Reinickendorf v 1.FC Wilmersdorf 2-3

VfB Hermsdorf v FC Hertha 03 Zehlendorf 1-4

SV Tasmania Berlin v Berliner SC 2-2

Koepenicker SC v SFC Stern 1900 2-1

SF Johannisthal v SV Sparta Lichtenberg  0-1

Apologies for the lack of photos, I forgot to take my camera. Will be asking around today and will update the post as and when I’ve sourced some.

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Review: 1.FC Union Berlin v Fortuna Duesseldorf

A.F
When I started this blog all of 7 days ago,  I promised myself that I would avoid writing too much about 1.FC Union as there are already some top quality English language materials on the subject of all things Eisern available that are well written and comprehensive in their content (check out www.union-berlin.com and of course, http://www.nodicemagazine.com). However, after heading along to the Stadion An der Alten Försterei for last nights 2.Bundesliga duel against Fortuna Duesseldorf, I could not resist but to share my experience. In all honesty, this is acting as some sort of therapy that I have found myself needing to go through today as I battle my way through a rather dull day in a poorly air-conditioned office, coming to terms with what I witnessed last night.  I also promised a lot of my friends that I wouldn’t over romanticise about football and would not write anything that could be classed as self indulgent wank. Look away now guys.

The night began early with some pre-game beers during an all-important and routine trip to the Abseitsfalle with some of the ever-growing army of English Unioners, spirits were high and conversations were had on topics as diverse and opinion splitting as Unions chances to build on the 2 relatively successful years in the 2nd flight of German football, the many reasons why Arsenal are completely and utterly fucked, safe standing in the English game and Marmite. After a short walk to the ground, I took up a position next to the scoreboard in Sektor 2, an area of the ground that I usually tend to avoid due to my opinions on Ultra fandom (a story for another day) and soaked up the last hour leading up to the kick off. As it always is with Union, the atmosphere builds and bubbles as kick off approaches with the usual array of punk rock classics, Union focussed rock songs and chants of “Union, Union” all culminating in the quite frankly mental sight of seeing 20,000 Ost-Berliners completely losing their shit to what can only be described as a punk rock infused rap metal power ballad in the shape of Nina Hagen’s Eisern Union.

"Schulter an Schulter für Eisern Union"

“Schulter an Schulter für Eisern Union”

After one of the most powerful renditions of this song I’ve heard in the dozens of times I’ve been along to the A.F, the teams got under way and despite being made to play on the back foot for the opening exchanges, Union were able to settle in to the game nicely and created a number of good chances early on. Fortuna looked a well organised unit for the best part of the first half and looked very dangerous on the counter attack, however, time and time again, we saw Christian Stuff and the Union defence that he held together working tirelessly to close down the on rushing hoards of Turquoise (in the top 1 of the worst kit I’ve seen all season contest). Union were then able to really settle down and get a hold on the game and this was rewarded when Köhler whipped the ball in to the box to be met by the towering head of none other than my personal favourite Unioner and the hero of last seasons Berlin Derby, Adam Nemec. This is when the atmosphere turned. A very standard first half display of noise just seemed to boil over in that 1 second when Nemec met the ball with his head and this set the tone going forward and provides a lot of justification as to why the focus of this report shifts a little bit from here on in.

Benjamin Köhler floats the ball in to the box and sees Nemec head it home

Benjamin Köhler floats the ball in to the box and sees Nemec head it home

Nemec celebrates

Nemec celebrates

After a quick half time pint and a fistful of cigarettes, I was ready to take in the 2nd half but no amount of nicotine and alcohol could prepare me for what was about to happen. The building and bubbling atmosphere I referred to earlier went passed boiling point, stopping somewhere miles after the thermometer had exploded under the weight of its own job and throughout the second half the noise reached a level that left even the most boring of Groundhoppers completely speechless. Relentless chanting from all 4 sides of the stadium meant that the cauldron of noise that is the Alte Foeresterei was transformed in to quite possibly one of the greatest and loudest sights that there is in Football. Some sort of football match was being played on the pitch as well and just 10 minutes in to the 2nd half, Union were awarded a free kick to the right hand side of the area. This was floated in by none other than the Fussballgott himself, Torsten Mattuschka, whose pass was duly met by that man Nemec again. Now, this is  the point when what I can only describe as complete pandemonium took over, the whole ground was rocking from kick off onwards and we were now in a situation where Union were 2-0 up against one of leagues big boys, on the T.V and in front of a full house. There was no other outcome to be expected. The next 35 minutes saw some unbelievable scenes on the terraces as what seemed like the whole of Koepenick was singing Zombie Nation and Unser Liebe etc… All I can remember of the game from this point on is that Daniel Haas made a save that seemed to feel more important than the 2 goals and was celebrated by Unioner across the stadium accordingly. Oh and Fortuna scored a goal following some pretty shocking Union defending but that was such an unimportant footnote on the overall evening, I am not even going to go in to detail.

A perfect cross that is, again, met by the towering presence that is Adam Nemec

A perfect cross that is, again, met by the towering presence that is Adam Nemec

The game ended 2-1 and was celebrated throughout the stadium as despite the late kick off time, every single Unioner remained in the ground long after the final whistle. The whole team, including Uwe Neuhaus who was coaxed out of the dressing room by some repetitive screams of his name, celebrated in front of the Wuhleseite faithful and even engaged in some quite impressive rave moves to the tune of the whole stadium continuing their Zombie Nation rendition.  This was a night in which Union as a collective continued to amaze me, the team continuing to amaze their supporters and it was obvious for all to see that this feeling was very much mutual.  The smiles on the faces of new boys Martin Dausch and Damir Kreilach during the post match celebrations speak volumes that back that previous statement up.

Final Score

Final Score

The players line up in front of the Wuhleseite and celebrate with the fans

The players line up in front of the Wuhleseite and celebrate with the fans

So, to conclude, it was another night at the Alte Foeresterei where football ended up playing second fiddle to the complete mayhem going on around the pitch. There is no denying that this was a resolute and battling performance from an Union side who are starting to find their feet a little bit and that they deserve great credit for the performance put in and the result achieved, I just wonder if I’d have enjoyed myself to the extent that I genuinely needed a cigarette, a cup of tea and a lie down if the Unioner were not the Unioner. No matter what your thoughts are on the club, the collective mentality and the die hard attitude of some elements of the support, there is no denying that on nights like last night, there is no club in this city, maybe this country, maybe this entire world that comes close to mirroring Union.

Fucking awesome.

Photos included in this article are taken by Felix at Groundhopping Etc (www.facebook.com/groundhoppingetc and http://www.union-berlin.com) and Ian at No Dice Magazine (www.nodicemagazine.com and http://www.facebook.com/nodicemagazine). Thanks a lot for passing them over.

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Club and Stadium Report: FC Viktoria 1889 Berlin Lichterfelde-Tempelhof

Today we are profiling FC Viktoria 1889 Berlin Lichterfelde-Tempelhof eV or FC Viktoria 1889 Berlin to their mates, as we went along to catch their 1-1 Regionalliga  Nordost draw  with  1.FC Union Berlin II on Friday night. All photos are included with massive thanks to Felix at Groundhopping Etc (www.facebook.com/groundhoppingetc) who has kindly offered to provide us with some visual relief to the wall of text that existed here before.

A view of the clubhouse

Clubhouse, floodlights and terracing

The History

Formed as a Fusion between FC Viktoria Berlin and Lichterfelde FC, FC Viktoria 1889 Berlin are an ambitious new challenger in the race to become Berlins 3rd footballing power behind Hertha and Union, combining the rich history and tradition of FC Viktoria with the exceptional youth set up, ladies team and stadium facilities of LFC, it was a fusion that was largely supported by the members of both clubs.  The Viktoria half of the fusion is where the history comes from and is the reason why this new club are able to boast 2 German Championships in the form of a gold star on their badge. These were achieved in 1908 and 1911 and since those exciting days when they were at the very top of the fledgling German game, Viktoria have been a team that have largely floated between the 4th and the 7th tiers of German football, peaking last season with their lifting of the Oberliga Nord trophy under the stewardship of Thomas Herbst to win promotion in to the Regionalliga and achieve what might be attributed as the most important moment in the founding of the new fusion team.

Lichterfelde FC or LFC Berlin, are one of the largest “vereins” in Berlin and currently have around 1200 members registered with them. Included within this, they have 40 active youth teams making them the largest junior football club in the whole of Germany. In terms of the 1st team, LFC spent a great deal of the last decade in the Oberliga, usually occupying the mid-table places. It took the merger with Viktoria to make that next step up and they are now in a very stable situation as a club.

With the Regionalliga Nordost season now in full flow and with the LFC Ladies team gaining promotion to the 2.Bundesliga last season, the new fusion club now have some flagship teams to give their push for the 3rd crown of Berlin some added  firepower and this season will prove pivotal for the overall success of the project and the club as a whole. I feel that if they are able to build on the already excellent foundations they have in place, and if they can at the very least, maintain  the impressive start to this seasons attendance figures, they could be in a very good situation to lay claim to the title that they set out to gain.

The main tribune and terracing

A great view of the Tribune, the Terracing and the Catering FC Foodgasm Headquarters

The Stadium

Stadion Lichterfelde is one of the bigger and more traditional stadiums in Berlin and boasts one of the nicest tribunes in the city. Aside from the main seated tribune, there is a terrace running along the front of the seats and places to stand all around the pitch. The atmosphere has been nothing but friendly all of the times that I have been there and it is a genuine pleasure to take in a game here. The stadium also have the much coveted accolade of being named as Catering FC amongst local football circles  which just adds another reason why a visit to the Stadion Lichterfelde is a must. The only drawback I can say is that there is a running track around the pitch but for those versed in the stadiums of Germany, this is an all too common problem across the board and not one specific to Viktoria.


The Way

Either take the S-Bahn to Lankwitz and walk from there, takes around 20 minutes or so. The other option is to take the S1, S2 or S25 to Rathaus Steglitz and pick up bus number 186 from there. This will then drop you right outside the stadium at a stop of the same name.

Catering FC HQ - VIP tickets get you a spot on the balcony...

Catering FC HQ – VIP tickets get you a spot on the balcony…

The Beer

The Beer facilities at Stadion Lichterfelde are pretty exceptional. There are 2 (maybe 3) mobile bars dotted around the ground, one situated near the away end and the other situated by the entrance. In these bars, they serve Berliner Kindl at a very reasonable €2.50. However, this is not the only place to buy beer here and it is certainly recommended to arrive early and visit the clubhouse. Here, they serve a selection of local and national Pilsners and Erdinger Hefeweizen out of the tap. Again, Beers are €2.50 for a 0.4l glass.

The Food

As mentioned above, Stadion Lictherfelde IS Catering FC. With the usual array of Steaks, Bratwurst and Boulette (priced at €3 and €2 respectively) available from the grill, you can’t really go too wrong, however, the Stadion Lichterfelde fat blokes dream does not end here. The clubhouse is also a restaurant and serves a full, seasonal menu of German food at a very reasonable price. I’ve had the pleasure of eating there prior to a game last season and we were able to have a proper meal, for between €5 and €10. There is also an Imbiss selling Chips, Currywurst and Bockwurst and this is located next to the clubhouse.

The Tax

€35 for a VIP Ticket (includes buffet and all you can drink bar…), €8/€6 for a seat in the tribune or €6/€4 for a standing ticket. They also offer a Family Ticket for 2 adults and 2 kids for €12. Kids under 12 years old get in for free.

The Fixtures

The next home game takes place on Sunday the 1st of September at 13.30pm as they welcome Optik Rathenow for a match in the Regionalliga Nordost.

 

Match poster for their next home game against Optik Rathenow - taken from the official club Facebook page

Match poster for their next home game against Optik Rathenow – taken from the official club Facebook page

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Club and Stadium Report: Berliner SC

Todays Club and Stadium report focuses on one of Berliner SC who are one of Berlins oldest sport clubs. We were there for their BerlinLiga defeat against Eintracht Mahlsdorf.

Action

The History

Located in the sleepy district of Grunewald, Berliner SC have a rich history across multiple different sports. The original football division of Berliner SC can boast honours in the shape of the 1930 German Championship. This was, however, as Hertha BSC who broke away from the overall club following the post war dissolution of sport clubs across a newly occupied Germany. In recent years, Berliner SC have floated between the Landesliga and the BerlinLiga and currently reside in the 6th tier and had an impressive finish to last years campaign, finishing 4th,

View from the small stand at Berliner SC. Photo courtesy of D.A.W.B

View from the small stand at Berliner SC. Photo courtesy of D.A.W.B

The Stadium

Berliner SC have their Club Home at the Hubertussportplatz on Hubertsallee in West Berlin. The complex itself has facilities for multiple different sports and it is not uncommon to be able to catch a Rugby or Hockey match straight after the Football (why you would want to, I don’t know). The football pitch is the main Grass surface in the complex and is located to your left as you enter. It is possible to sit near the clubhouse so you aren’t too far from the beer and still be able see the game but there is also a small, seated stand that runs adjacent to the touchline. 

The Way

Take the Ring Bahn to Halansee where you can pick up the M29 bus direction Grunewald/Rosenbeck to Herthastrasse. You can also take other S and U Bahn services to Zoologischer Garten and pick up the same bus. The ground is opposite the bus stop and can be found on your left hand side.

The Beer

Beer is only available from the clubhouse and is priced at €2.80 for 0.5l. The beer they serve is Veltins.

The Food

Unlike most stadiums around the city, there is no grill at Berliner SC but they do have an extensive menu in the clubhouse. They do everything from proper meals down to Wurst and Pommes. Between us we sampled the Burger and the Currywurst which were both pretty good and priced at €6.50 and €3.50 respectively which was excellent value for what you get.

An proper unit of a Burger. Photo courtesy of D.A.W.B

An proper unit of a Burger. Photo courtesy of D.A.W.B

The Tax

€7 for adults, €5 for concessions, €3 for kids

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Preview: BerlinLiga – Matchday 2 – 14/08/2013

After an annoyingly long period of pretending to care about meaningless friendlies in the depths of Brandenburg, the BerlinLiga action is back with a bang as we already move in to the bulk of the games of Matchday 2.

Tonights main game for us takes place at the Julius Hirsch Sportanlage as TUS Makkabi welcome Tennis Borussia Berlin in the Eichkamp Derby. Makkabi, who were last years runners-up, are in the process of coming to terms with a mass exodus of players over the summer as they saw some of their best players move on to other clubs within the division, including 2 of TeBe’s new boys, Alexander Kynass and Hamdi Chamki. They had a nightmare start to the campaign on Sunday seeing themselves beaten 3-1 away at Rudow and tonight they will be looking to erase that memory with a win against their local rivals.

TeBe had a solid start to the campaign getting a point at home to a very solid Berliner SC side and they will be looking to build on this encouraging performance. There were some very bright moments in Saturdays game and if Thokomeni and Chamki can continue to link up well and put in shifts like they did at the weekend then I see no reason why chances will not be created. Obviously though, you are only as good as the chances you convert and TeBe will be hoping that Micha Fuss can continue to help them overcome a problem that hampered last seasons campaign.

Kick off is at 18.30pm and the game will take place at the Julius Hirsch Sportanlage. Nearest S-Bahn station is Messe Sud.  Bottles of Becks and the D.A.W.B award winning spicy sausages will, hopefully, be on offer.

The other matches taking place tonight are as follows;
18:30 – SV Sparta Lichtenberg v SV Tasmania Berlin
Fischerstrasse
19:00 – 1.FC Wilmersdorf v Koepenicker SC
Blissestrasse Sportanlage
19:30 – Nordberliner SC v TSV Rudow
Elchdamm
19:45 – FC Hertha 03 Zehlendorf v SF Johannistahl
Ernst Reuter Stadion
20:00 – SFC Stern 1900 v SC Staaken
Schildhornstrasse

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Club and Stadium Report – SV Empor Berlin

Todays Club and Stadium report focusses on Prenzlauer Berg’s SV Empor Berlin, who we went along to see in their 2-1 BerlinLiga defeat at the hands of Füchse Berlin Reinickendorf.

The History

With over 600 members, SV Empor Berlin boast the largest football department in the Pankow district. During the DDR years, the club spent a lot of the time floating around between the lower divisions of the East German league system, the highest point being when they were able to reach the Bezirkliga in 1989. Following the reunification of the nation and the city, the East German Bezirkliga sides were integrated in to the West German system and Empor found themselves spending most of the subsequent decade in the Landesliga (except for a 3 year stint in the Bezirkliga between 2000 and 2003). In 2008, they were promoted to the Berlin Liga and have been there ever since.

The Stadium

Empor play their home games at the Friedrich Ludwig Jahn Sportpark and are usually playing their games in the small stadium next to the Cantianstrasse entrance. The ground itself is a really nice setting for watching football with trees lining one end and impressive buildings in that typical East Berlin style overlooking the pitch from the opposite side to the road. It is also reported that this pitch is the oldest known football pitch in Berlin.  Having watched both games in the depths of winter and the height of summer here, I must say that it is one more suited for Summer evenings The ground holds around about 500 people, most people tending to congregate in front of the clubhouse. The clubhouse itself is a small affair but is very friendly and modestly priced. 

The Way

Take the U2 to Eberswalder Strasse and follow signs to the Stadium and Cantianstrasse. The entrance is through the building on your right hand side as you enter on the left of Cantianstrasse. Alternatively, you can take the Ring Bahn or other S-Bahn services to Schoenhauser Allee which is about a 7 minute walk away from the stadium.

The Beer

Unfortunately for local beer enthusiasts, the only tap beer on offer is Schalke-sponsoring and general “distinctly average pilsner”, Veltins. Again though, as is always the case in Berlin, it’s €2 a pint so it would be very rude to take too much issue with it. They also sell bottles of Hefeweizen and these are priced at €2.50 a go. 

The Food

Bratwurst and Boulette were available and were priced at €2 each.

The Tax

€6, programmes are usually available for €1

With thanks to Glenn for spotting the mistakes in here

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Preview: Empor Berlin v Füchse Berlin Reinickendorf – BerlinLiga – Matchday 2

After a relatively successful Pre-Season campaign which included silverware as they lifted both the Exer-Pokal and the Ostberlin Super Cup, I was excited about how organized and threatening Empor had looked and had them down as my wildcard tip for the season. This may have largely been down to them being the highest ranked side in both of the tournaments they played in but I could not hide from the fact that in the 2 games I saw them play in, they had scored 10 goals, conceding just 2. The dream run in the build up to the season was very short lived and the reality of the BerlinLiga hit home on Saturday as they were taken to pieces and were resoundingly beaten 3-0 by one of the divisions new boys, Koepeneicker SC. Considering their lowly finish last season, it may be hard for the Empor supporters to look for positives in their current situation and even at this early stage, my pre-season prediction looks to be drastically off the mark. Tonight, they will look for a return to winning ways as they face the Foxes of Reinickendorf in their first home game of the season at the Jahnsportpark. The Fuechse were another of the leagues struggling sides last season and finished just 1 point above Empor and 2 points above the drop zone. Saturday saw them open their points account for the new season with a draw against another of the leagues new sides and “local rivals”, Nordberliner SC and considering the result Empor succumbed to down in Koepenick, you’d like to think that they will be up for the challenge.

The game takes place at the Jahnsportpark complex and is on the pitch to the right of the entrance at Cantianstrasse 24 (Nearest U-Bahn is Eberswalde Strasse, U2). Kick off is at 19:00 and entry will be around the €6 mark. Beer and Wurst will be on offer or else I wouldn’t be going.

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Groundhopping Trips

On a monthly basis, usually 2 months before the proposed weekend, we will be posting a Groundhopper’s Guide to a weekend in Berlin. Having lived here for a while now, we are aware of just how over complicated it can be to work out a fully functioning hop that takes in multiple games in each day of your weekend. We aim to take that pain away from you. The idea is to focus mainly on the lower leagues but to sometimes also try to incorporate a Home Game at one of either Hertha BSC or 1.FC Union Berlin (September doesn’t!).

The first one of these can be found by clicking the Groundhopping Trips link at the top of this page.

 

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BerlinLiga – Matchday #1 – 11/08/2013

With only 3 games starting on Saturday, it was a busy opening Sunday across the city and there were plenty of good games to look forward to in the BerlinLiga.

Our game of the day took place at the Blissestrasse Sportanlage as we attended 1.FC Wilmersdorf v Stern 1900. A decent sized crowd of 95 paying customers and about the same again in Club Members and Berlin Liga season ticket holders watched on as Wilmersdorf pushed and made plenty of chances, only to be denied time and time again not only by Fritz Waldhecker in the Stern goal but also by the defence, by the woodwork and, at times, by being their own worst enemy.  It was Stern though who left with the points, despite the pressure from the home side and the lack of creativity from last seasons 3rd placed team, a penalty was awarded shortly before half time and was blasted in to the bottom right hand corner by the Stern 1900 defender, Benjamin Nebus.

The  pick of other matches took place in Hermsdorf as VFB welcomed SC Staaken to their Seebadstrasse Stadium. It was 1-1 at half time with goals from Felix Klunter for Staaken (21 minutes) and Florian Venz for the home side (37 minutes) separating the two sides at the break. As the end of normal time approached, the scores stood at 2-2 thanks to 2nd half goals from Martin Haustein (58 minutes) for Hermsdorf and club captain, Florian Schwarzer for the visitors (80 minutes) but this game still had more to give right up to the final whistle as is exemplified with the fact that both teams managed to snatch another goal each deep in to stoppage time. Fabrico Hennings must have thought he had grabbed all 3 points for the home side in the 91st minute but an equaliser with what was almost the last kick of the game from Ehnan Bahceci meant that Staaken travelled home to the Berlin-Brandenburg border with a point in hand.

In the other games taking place we saw Eintracht Mahlsdorf deliver a 4-1 drubbing to one of the leagues new teams, Sparta Lichtenberg. Another of the leagues new boys fell foul to the experience of one of leagues older hands as SF Johannistahl were beaten 0-2 at home to SC Gatow (http://www.nodicemagazine.com/2013/08/12/a-meeting-of-old-sportfreunde-and-new-challenges/ – English language match report here!). In other results we saw a shock 3-1 win for TSV Rudow over TUS Makkabi as one of last seasons struggling sides comprehensively beat last seasons runners up and finally, Tasmania Berlin were defeated 2-0 at home to Hertha 03 Zehlendorf who have been the notably more active of the sides in the transfer market over this summer.

Preview of Empor Berlin v Reinickendorfer Fuechse is to follow tomorrow + a preview of all of Wednesday and Thursdays Berlin action will follow later in the week.