For my Friday night football fix I found myself in the North Westphalia region of Germany for a 3.Liga clash between Preußen Münster and Hansa Rostock. Münster is a student city and is famous for the amount of bikes within the city. Everywhere you turned there was a bike and the parking station by the hauptbanhof is certainly the first thing you notice upon arrival!
I arrived late afternoon after a slight delay in my flight from Bucharest but there was still time to catch up with a mate in the Pinkus Müller brewery tap for a few beers before catching the bus to the ground.
Formed in 1906, Preußen Münster have spent all of their years below the top flight of German football apart from one season, 1963/64, when, after consistent Oberliga finishes, they were invited to become one of the founder members of the Bundesliga. They finished 15th in that inaugural season and were relegated back to regional football.
The club are currently in the third tier of German football, where they have been since 2011 but at the start of play tonight they were 4th from bottom whilst the visitors from Rostock were 4th from top, but both teams were in good form since the winter break.
Off the pitch though there could possibly be troubles ahead. At an extraordinary general meeting in January members voted to for the football department to became separate from the sports association, thus opening the football club club to investment and the possible move away from the 50 plus 1 model, where members retain a controlling interest.
This has led to Preußen Münster ultras withdrawing their support by not partaking in the things most admired in German football such as, for example, not displaying banners or constantly singing during matches. At this time though there is no apparent boycott of games.
|The main home block(s) behind the goal. Note there are no flags on display.|
The Preußenstadion has been home since 1926. When it was built it was one of the most impressive stadiums in Germany with a capacity of around 40,000. That is now down to around 15,000 but in my eyes it still looks a fantastic ground. There has been work done in recent times such as the building of a new grandstand (in 2009) and covering added to the far side. There are swathes of open terracing and there is still the feel of a proper 'old skool' stadium.
Simon Scherder (54) headed home from close range to make it 2-0 and from then on the game was pretty much a non-event. Skipper Adriani Grimaldi had a chance to extend Preußen Münster's lead but he blazed over when clean through.
Hansa Rostock, considering their form, offered little and the game petered out. I must give credit to the Rostock supporters who, having travelled in numbers, never stopped singing and bouncing up and down all game despite having very little to cheer.
Post match analysis took place in The James and Braukunstwerk, which was an excellent way to round off the evening!