|Full name||Rot Weiss Ahlen e. V.|
|League||Regionalliga West (IV)|
Rot Weiss Ahlen is a German football club based in Ahlen, North Rhine-Westphalia. Until 2006 the club was known as LR Ahlen for its major sponsor, but underwent a name change when the sponsor withdrew its support after the team was relegated to the Regionalliga (III) in that year.
The club has its roots in the local sides of the early 1900s formed by coalminers who played pickup games after work. In 1917, Freie Sportclub Union (FSCU) Ahlen was founded and became one of the region's best known teams, playing in the second tier leagues of the time. The rise of the Third Reich saw the club disbanded as over three-quarters of its members were foreigners making the side politically unpalatable to the regime. A new club, Tus Germania Ahlen, was formed in 1933. This side merged with the strong local club Wacker Ahlen to create the town's largest sports association.
After World War II attempts to rebuild local teams failed until members of eight pre-war clubs came together to form Turn- und Sport Ahlen in 1948. The new side went on to many decades of routine play in the local upper leagues. In 1991, TuS were faced with a financial crisis and demotion to lower level play. A local benefactor, Helmut Spikker, helped bail the team out through the support provided by his firm, cosmetics manufacturer LR International.
Now on a firm footing, TuS Ahlen enjoyed an impressive run of success through the early 90s beginning with a Berzirksliga Westfalen (VII) title in 1992 and promotion to the Landesliga Westfalen (VI). In each of the following three seasons TuS earned another championship and promotion; out of the Landesliga, through the Verbandsliga Westfalen-Nordost (V) and Oberliga Westfalen (IV), leading to the Regionalliga West/Südwest (III).
Leichtathletik Rasensport Ahlen was formed on 1 June 1996 when TuS Ahlen merged with Blau-Weiß Ahlen to begin play in the Regionalliga West/Südwest in 1996–97. The club's rise was stalled and they made a bid again move up by signing a number of players with Bundesliga experience for 1998–99. However, they could only manage a sixth-place finish and subsequently unloaded their expensive talent. Living more within their means, the side earned promotion with a second-place result in 1999–2000 and a 2–1 victory over 1. FC Union Berlin in the playoff round to advance to the 2. Bundesliga. Ahlen's best result came in their debut in the second tier when they ended sixth. The team slipped to become a lower tier side and lingered for another five seasons before a 17th-place result led to their demotion in 2006.
After being relegated LR Ahlen lost the support of its major sponsor and underwent a name change to become Rot Weiss Ahlen on 31 May 2006. Chairman Spikker also left the club at the end of August with his successor being vice-president Heinz-Jürgen Gosda. The team returned to 2. Bundesliga play after finishing as champions of the Regionalliga Nord in 2007–08. With the end of the 2009–10 season, Ahlen was relegated to the 3. Liga, and the following year to the fifth NRW-Liga despite a 17th-place finish outside the drop down zone because of insolvency.
In 2020 the club finished second in the Oberliga Westfalen to win promotion to the Regionalliga West.
|1999–2000||Regionalliga West/Südwest (III)||2nd (promoted)|
|2000–01||2. Bundesliga (II)||6th|
|2005–06||2. Bundesliga||17th (relegated)|
|2006–07||Regionalliga Nord (III)||13th|
|2007–08||Regionalliga Nord||1st (promoted)|
|2008–09||2. Bundesliga (II)||10th|
|2009–10||2. Bundesliga||18th (relegated)|
|2010–11||3. Liga||20th (original 17th;relegated due to insolvency)|
|2014–15||Oberliga Westfalen||2nd (promoted)|
|2015–16||Regionalliga West (IV)||13th|
|2016–17||Regionalliga West||15th (relegated)|
|2017–18||Oberliga Westfalen (V)||14th|
|2019–20||Oberliga Westfalen||2nd (promoted)|
|2020–21||Regionalliga West (IV)||18th|
The club's honours:
Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.