FC Alemannia Aachen Tradition is in a league of its own
For fans, the history of Alemannia Aachen has been an emotional rollercoaster – full of ups and downs between cloud nine and the depths of despair. In 2013 the club experienced its all-time low – Tivoli exited the world of professional soccer, landing in League Division 4 and was, to boot, a financial basket case – bust and burdened with a stadium that simply swallowed money – just six years after leaving the German Premier League. But the supporters remained true, convinced that what really matters is not winning but sticking together through thick and thin – and if that has to be in the lower divisions, then so be it.
Alemannia – a great footballing tradition
- Founded in 1900 by 18 schoolchildren
- 1969: Runner-up in the German Premier League
- Even now: still top of the table in the all-time German League Division 2
- Three-times finalist in the German F.A. Cup final: 1953 against Rot-Weiss Essen, 1965 against Borussia Dortmund and in 2004 against Werder Bremen
- 2004: Played in the UEFA Cup, reaching the third round
- 2005/2016: In the German Premier League
- Ground: Tivoli (re-built in 2009)
But what would Alemannia and its fans be if the pendulum didn’t start swinging the other way again? After undergoing bankruptcy proceedings, its stadium now bought by Aachen City Council, the club is again free to set its mind on sporting prowess. And things aren’t going so badly either. A full 9,000 made the pilgrimage to the Tivoli ground for the opening match of 2014/2015, and for the fixture against long-time rival Rot-Weiss Essen at the beginning of 2015 (another club with a proud history) the stadium was full-to-bursting with 30,000 fans – a new league division record.
The new Tivoli ground: crowded, steep and deafening
As His crowning achievement, say the good burghers of “Oche”, the great God of Football created … Alemannia Aachen. Only those of truly evil intent would dare to postulate that He was just having a bad day. To any Öcher, feelings run high when he thinks of “his” Alemannia. Indeed this club – whose 9,300 members make it Aachen’s biggest association – is at least every bit as much about feelings as it is about football. Tumultuous cheering or depression a-nearing, the rollercoaster history of Aachen’s footballing heroes means fans get anything but an easy ride. What they do get, though, is a truly classless society on the terraces, one where doctors and dustmen mingle as equals. Alemannia is “cult” in Aachen and the new Tivoli ground, too, has stayed “crowded, steep and deafening”. Just the way Aacheners like it. Love and tradition, you see, put Alemannia in a league of its own.
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