This is a list of the main association football rivalries in Germany.

Domestic club football


First Party Second Party Nickname, if applicable Notes References
Bayern Munich Hamburger SV Nord-Süd-Gipfel ('north–south summit'). [1][2][3]
Schalke 04
VfB Stuttgart Südderby ('southern derby'), Südgipfel ('southern summit'), Südschlager ('southern blockbuster'). [4]
Borussia Dortmund Der Klassiker ('the classic'). Viewed as Bundesliga equivalent to the Spanish El Clásico [5][6][7][8][9]
Werder Bremen North-South classic Name for the two long-standing Bundesliga rivals in German top flight. The matches between them is the most often played in German top flight. [10][11]
Hamburger SV Nordderby ('northern derby'). [12][13]
Preußen Münster VfL Osnabrück Grenzlandderby ('borderlands derby') Name of derby referencing the border between North Rhine-Westphalia and Lower Saxony. [14][15][16][17][18]
1. FC Kaiserslautern 1. FC Saarbrücken Südwest derby ('south-western derby') [19][20]
SV Waldhof Mannheim [21]
Kickers Offenbach [22][23][24]
Hansa Rostock FC St. Pauli Politisches Derby ('political derby') Name of derby references the leftist alignments of St Pauli and rightist alignments of Rostock. [25][26]



First Party Second Party Nickname, if applicable Notes References
Karlsruher SC VfB Stuttgart Baden-Schwaben-Derby ('BadenSwabia derby') [27]
SC Freiburg  
Karlsruher SC Baden-Derby
1. FC Heidenheim VfR Aalen Ostalb-Derby [28][29]


Main article: Bavarian football derbies

First Party Second Party Nickname, if applicable Notes References
1. FC Nürnberg Bayern Munich Bavarian derby
Greuther Fürth Franconian derby [30]
FC Augsburg 1860 Munich FC Augsburg–1860 Munich rivalry
FC Ingolstadt Augsburg–Ingolstadt derby [31][32]
Jahn Regensburg Danube river derby [33][34][35]

Former East Germany

First Party Second Party Nickname, if applicable Notes References
Erzgebirge Aue FSV Zwickau Erzgebirgsderby ('Ore Mountains derby') [36]
Chemnitzer FC [37]
Hallescher FC [38][39]
Carl Zeiss Jena Rot-Weiß Erfurt Thuringia derby [40]
Union Berlin Hansa Rostock [41]
Dynamo Dresden [42]
1. FC Magdeburg Elb-Clasico [43][44]
BFC Dynamo Two most successful teams in DDR-Oberliga [45]
SV Babelsberg Political derby [46]
Energie Cottbus Brandenburg derby The derby also has a strong political element due to the leftist alignments of Babelsberg and rightist alignments of Cottbus.[47] [48]


First Party Second Party Nickname, if applicable Notes References
Eintracht Frankfurt Darmstadt 98 Hesse derby [49][50]
Kickers Offenbach Main derby [51]
Darmstadt 98


First Party Second Party Nickname, if applicable Notes References
VfB Lübeck Holstein Kiel Holstein derby [52]

Lower Saxony / Bremen

First Party Second Party Nickname, if applicable Notes References
Hannover 96 Eintracht Braunschweig Lower Saxony derby [53]
SV Meppen VfL Osnabrück [54][55][56]
VfB Oldenburg [57]

North Rhine-Westphalia

First Party Second Party Nickname, if applicable Notes References
Borussia Dortmund Schalke 04 Revierderby Games between Ruhr teams: Borussia Dortmund, Schalke 04, VfL Bochum, MSV Duisburg, Rot-Weiss Essen, Rot-Weiß Oberhausen and SG Wattenscheid are also sometimes called Revierderbies, more often called Kleine (Small) Revierderby for disambiguation purposes. [12][58][59]
Borussia Mönchengladbach Borussen derby [60][61]
1. FC Köln Rhineland derby Any other game between Borussia Mönchengladbach, 1. FC Köln, Fortuna Düsseldorf and Bayer Leverkusen may also occasionally be called Rheinland derby [62]
Arminia Bielefeld SC Preußen Münster Westphalian derby Sometimes other games between teams of this area are labelled Westphalian derby, e.g. Arminia Bielefeld v. Borussia Dortmund. [63]


FC Gütersloh SC Verl Gütersloh district derby [65]
SC Wiedenbrück  
SC Verl [66][67]


First Party Second Party Nickname, if applicable Notes References
1. FC Saarbrücken FC 08 Homburg Saarland derby [68][69][70]
SV Elversberg  
FC 08 Homburg [71]


European club football

Real Madrid versus Bayern Munich is the match that has historically been played most often in the Champions League/European Cup with 26 matches.[96] Real's former biggest loss at home in the Champions League came at the hands of Bayern on 29 February 2000 (2–4).[97] Due to Bayern being traditionally hard to beat for Madrid, Madrid supporters often refer to Bayern as the "Bestia negra" ("Black Beast").[98] Despite the number of duels, Bayern and Real have never met in the final of a Champions League or European Cup.[99][100][101][102][103]

National team

The German national team also has many rivalries, including with England, Italy, the Netherlands, France, and Poland. When there were two German national teams, West and East Germany, they were also rivals.


Main article: England–Germany football rivalry

The England–Germany football rivalry is considered to be mainly an English phenomenon—in the run-up to any competition match between the two teams, many UK newspapers will print articles detailing results of previous encounters, such as those in 1966, 1990 and 1996. Football fans in England often consider Germany to be their main sporting rivals and care more about this rivalry than those with other nations, such as Argentina or Scotland. Most German fans consider the Netherlands or Italy to be their traditional footballing rivals, and as such, usually the rivalry is not taken quite as seriously there as it is in England.[104]

The English and German national football teams have played each other since the end of the 19th century, and officially since 1930. The teams met for the first time in November 1899, when England beat Germany in four straight matches. Notable matches between England and Germany (or West Germany) include the 1966 FIFA World Cup Final, and the semi-finals of the 1990 FIFA World Cup and UEFA Euro 1996.[105]


Main article: France–Germany football rivalry

The France–Germany football rivalry between the national football teams of Germany and IFrance, is one of the few longstanding football rivalries at a national level.


Main article: Germany–Italy football rivalry

The Germany–Italy football rivalry between the national football teams of Germany and Italy, the two most successful football nations in Europe and only behind Brazil internationally, is a long-running one. Overall, the two teams have won eight FIFA World Cup championships (four each) and made a total of fourteen appearances in the final of the tournament (eight for Germany and six for Italy) – more than all the other European nations combined. They have played against each other five times in the World Cup, and many of these matches have been notable in the history of the tournament. "Game of the Century", the 1970 semifinal between the two countries that Italy won 4–3 in extra time, was so dramatic that it is commemorated by a plaque at the entrance of the Estadio Azteca in Mexico City.

Germany has also won three European Championships while Italy has won it twice. The two countries have faced each other four times in the European championship, with three draws (one German penalty shoot-out victory) and one Italian victory. While Germany has won more international championships, Italy is largely dominant in the head-to-head international match-up, having beaten Germany 15 times in 37 games, with 13 draws and 9 defeats.[106] Moreover, Germany had never defeated Italy in a major tournament match until their victory in the Euro 2016 quarter finals, on penalties (though statistically considered a draw), with all Germany's other wins over Italy being in friendly competitions. However, the draw between the two teams in the group stage of Euro 1996 eliminated Italy from the tournament, while Germany had already qualified for the knockout stage.[107][108]


Main article: Germany–Netherlands football rivalry

The Germany–Netherlands football rivalry is one of the few longstanding football rivalries at a national level. Beginning in 1974 when the Dutch lost the 1974 FIFA World Cup to West Germany in the final (though deeply rooted in Dutch anti-German sentiment due to the German occupation of the Netherlands during World War II) the rivalry between the two nations has become one of the best known international football rivalries in the world.[109]

Both football nations have been among the top ranked according to the strongest football nations by Elo Ratings, and have met a total of 45 times (of which 14 matches were competitive) which resulted in 16 victories for Germany, 17 draws, and 12 victories for the Netherlands.

East Germany vs. West Germany

Main article: East Germany–West Germany football rivalry

The East Germany–West Germany football rivalry was an association football rivalry between teams from East Germany and West Germany, existing from 1949 to 1990, while two separate German countries existed.

Clubs from the two countries met at official level in both national team and club competitions like the FIFA World Cup or the European Cup. While the West German national team received strong support in East Germany, with supporters from the East often travelling to away matches of the West German team in Eastern Europe,[110][111] encounters between teams from the East and West in European Cup competitions were often hard-fought.[112]

See also


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