AFC Wimbledon will on Saturday become the seventh English club to face Kickers Offenbach, as part of an exciting double-header in Germany.
Kickers have previously taken on six English clubs, the most recent being Arsenal in 1998 when the Gunners earned a 4-0 away friendly win. The other English clubs to face Offenbach are as follows: Burnley (four times), Exeter City, Ipswich Town, Nottingham Forest, Portsmouth. Wimbledon face Kickers Offenbach on Saturday (3.00 pm kick-off German time), a match that follows a friendly against Kaiserslautern on Friday night (7.00 pm kick-off German time at Arena Weingarten). Please note this is not Kaiserslautern’s main stadium.
Key facts about Kickers Offenbach
- Formed in 1901, Kickers currently play at the 20,000-capacity Sparda-Bank-Hessen-Stadion, based in Offenbach am Main.
- Kickers have played in the German Bundesliga (top flight) and highlights came in the 1970s when they won the German Cup and subsequently faced FC Bruges in the old European Cup Winners’ competition.
- Kickers currently play in Regionalliga Sudwest (fourth tier of German league pyramid).
- Current Offenbach striker Jake Hirst is the only Englishman to have played for Kickers. His goalscoring exploits with Kickers have earned him plenty of adulation from the Kickers support and a chant of ‘Jake Hirst’s On Fire’ can regularly be heard at home games. Visit the Kickers Offenbach Facebook site to hear a rousing rendition of the chant!
A bit about FC Kaiserslautern
- FC Kaiserslautern won the German Bundesliga title in 1997/98, winning the national title in the club’s first season after promotion from the second tier.
- Kaiserslautern were formed in 1900 and currently play matches at the 49,780-capacity Fritz-Walter-Stadion.
- Despite now playing in 3.Liga (third tier of German league system), Kaiserslautern still has an average attendance of 23,000.
- The club’s illustrious list of former players includes Michael Ballack, Miroslav Klose, Andreas Brehme, and Hans-Peter Briegel.
Tickets, date, venue
FC Kaiserslautern – This match is to be played at Arena Weingarten, home of SV Weingarten. Take a look at the exact location in Weingarten. The match will take place on Friday 12 July (kick-off at 7.00 pm German time). Tickets can be purchased on the day at Arena Weingarten before the match.
Kickers Offenbach – Match will be held on Saturday 13 July (kick-off at 3.00 pm German time) at the Sparda-Bank-Hessen-Stadion (home ground of Kickers Offenbach). Visit the Kickers Offenbach website for the exact location. To purchase tickets in advance, visit the Kickers Offenbach online ticket shop. You can also pay on the day for this match by visiting the box office at the stadium beforehand.
FC Kaiserslautern – The best recommended way is to board a plane from Heathrow (LHR) to Frankfurt (FRA), before getting a train from the airport to Lingenfeld. There is no direct train to Lingenfeld so you must change at Mannheim. Initially, you will board the Inter-City-Express train to Mannheim, before taking a local train service to Lingenfeld. With bus links to Weingarten not recommended, supporters should get a taxi to Arena Weingarten. The distance is around 4km from Lingenfeld to Weingarten.
Offenbach – From Frankfurt airport (FRA) board the S8 train to Offenbach (10-minute journey), then take the 102 bus directly to the Sparda-Bank-Hessen-Stadion.
It promises to be an exciting trip and it would be great to hear a rendition of ‘Wally’s At The Wheel’ or another of our other cracking Wimbledon chants over in Germany!