Viktoria Köln v Hallescher
A wet Saturday morning welcomed us following the previous evening’s match at VfL Osnabruck (read that report here). One traditional old club would follow another with today’s hosts aging back to 1909 in various guises. This would be the second of three 3.Liga matches of the weekend. Tomorrow we would head to Duisburg v Dynamo Dresden.
Getting to Köln
Travel from Osnabruck to Cologne would be a direct train taking us 200km south, however as we were staying over in Dusseldorf we opted to stop off and drop luggage at the hotel before jumping back on another train. Departing Osnabruck at 7.37am, the ICE train costing £23 including reserved seating, arrived promptly at 9.22am. We then took a further train to Köln which departs approximately every 15 minutes and takes just 26 minutes.
History of Viktoria Köln
It’s important to understand just how dramatic the background is at Viktoria Köln. As with many German clubs, numerous mergers and re-naming’s make it all very complex. These mergers saw the club formed as SC Rapid Köln, SC Viktoria Köln and SCB Preußen Köln. Following this history, 2010 saw them eventually establish themselves as the club we know now. It was 2019 when they arrived back in professional leagues and where they sit today.
Arriving at the stadium just under two hours before kick-off we were surprised by the lack of people. The stadium was closed with stewards and police only just arriving. The stadium opened its doors about 80 minutes before kick-off and numbers ebbed in slowly between then and kick-off.
Our first action was to sample the Bratwurst. Twice.
Our position was Block 11, the Home End behind the goal. We had a pick of the standing area so headed fairly central for the perfect view. To the left of us was the band and it filled out evenly around us without ever being overly busy.
Ahead of kick-off it was noticeable how different Viktoria Koln were to other teams in their preparation. The players were for some time simply shooting at the goal – perhaps this is part of their routine or to build confidence, but it wasn’t as structured as we would expect.
Before the match, the atmosphere heightened and below you can see when the players emerged onto the pitch.
Viktoria Köln v Hallescher
The match started brightly and we didn’t have long to wait until the first goal was scored by Handle in the 5th minute. This was the main action of the first half where the rain had started to fall, albeit mainly light drizzle.
In the second half the weather deteriorated rapidly. The drizzle turned into heavy rain and of course Block 11 is not sheltered. As the rain lashed down, the drummer got louder and the fans started to sing more almost like a battle against the elements.
The home fans were rewarded when a penalty was given, and converted on 66 minutes and the game looked all over. The rain continued to pour down, yet occasionally it would subside just for a few minutes. The man to the right of us used such a moment to wring out his scarf, seemingly surprised just how much liquid he emptied. He repeated this twice more before the end of the match.
In the 71st minute Hallescher FC pulled a goal back and still it didn’t seem possible for Viktoria to lose this match. But then, the 89th minute an equaliser which stunned everyone. The moment the ball hit the net, the drummer stopped drumming and silence engulfed Block 11. There wouldn’t be time to find a winner and the match finished in a 2-2 draw,
Beer Cup Score Card
At every match we attend in Germany we love to judge the quality of the Beer Cups. We use our very own Beer Cup Score Card and the Viktoria Köln performed well with just no handle, and lack of it being part of a collectable series seeing points dropped – a solid 7/10
Viktoria Koln is a club you could visit on a Covert Football Trip. Check us out here