SV Darmstadt 98

Darmstadt 98
Full name Sportverein Darmstadt 1898 e.V.
Nickname(s) Die Lilien (The Lilies)
Founded 22 May 1898
Ground Jonathan-Heimes-Stadion am Böllenfalltor
Ground Capacity 17,000
Chairman Klaus Rüdiger Fritsch
Manager Norbert Meier
League Bundesliga
2015–16 14th
Website Club home page

SV Darmstadt 98 is a German football club based in Darmstadt, Hesse. The club was founded on 22 May 1898 as FC Olympia Darmstadt. Early in 1919 the association was briefly known as Rasen-Sportverein Olympia before merging with Darmstädter Sport Club 1905 on 11 November that year to become Sportverein Darmstadt 98. Merger partner SC was the product of a 1905 union between Viktoria 1900 Darmstadt and Germania 1903 Darmstadt. The footballers are today part of a sports club which also offers its approximately 5,500 members[1] athletics, basketball, cheerleading, hiking, judo, and table tennis.

The football department competed in the Bundesliga for the 2015–16 season after a 33-year run in lower leagues. They managed to hold their position and will be competing in the Bundesliga for the 2016–17 season. Dirk Schuster has been the manager of the club since 28 December 2012.


Early History

Cigarette card with the crest of the club from 1930

Olympia played as a lower table side in the Westkreisliga between 1909 and 1913. In the late 20s and early 30s the club played as SV Darmstadt in the Kreisliga Odenwald and Bezirksliga Main-Hessen, Gruppe Hesse, but struggled to stay in top flight competition. In 1933, German football was reorganized under the Third Reich into sixteen premier divisions known as Gauligen. Darmstadt was not able to break into upper league play until 1941 when they joined the Gauliga Hessen-Nassau, Gruppe 2. Their stay was short-lived and they were relegated after their second season of play at that level. By 1944–45 the division had collapsed in the face of the advance of Allied armies into Germany.

Darmstadt enjoyed a long run as a second division team through the 50s and then again from the time of the formation of the Bundesliga in 1963 on into the 70s. However, they were never better than a lower to mid-table side until they finally managed a breakthrough in 1973 with a Regionalliga Süd championship and participation in the promotion rounds for the Bundesliga where they finished a distant second to Rot-Weiss Essen.

From the Bundesliga to insolvency

A side with limited resources, Darmstadt eventually managed two seasons in the Bundesliga (1978–79 and 1981–82). They narrowly missed a third turn in the top league in 1988 when they lost in a lengthy relegation-promotion play-off to Waldhof Mannheim in extra time of the third match between the two clubs. In the following years Darmstadt 98 escaped relegation to the Amateur Oberliga Hessen (III) in 1991 when Essen was refused a 2. Bundesliga licence for financial reasons. However, by 1997, SV had themselves become victims of financial mismanagement, slipping to the third and fourth divisions.

The team's most recent successes include wins in the Hessen Pokal (Hessen Cup) in 1999, 2001, 2006, 2007 and 2008 as well as three consecutive Possmann-Hessen Cup wins from 2000 to 2002. In the German Cup Darmstadt advanced as far as the third round in 1989 and 2001, and to the quarter-finals in 1986. In 2004 the club claimed the Oberliga Hessen (IV) championship under manager and ex-player Bruno Labaddia and were promoted to the Regionalliga Süd (III).

Financial problems limited their options and they were relegated to the Oberliga Hessen (IV) at the end of the 2006–07 season. The club's stated aim was to reach the new 3. Liga within five years. However, on 6 March 2008 Darmstadt entered insolvency proceedings with debts of around €1.1 million making the future of the club uncertain. After the 2007–08 Oberliga Hessen-Championship, Darmstadt played in the Regionalliga Süd. Darmstadt took various measures to avert bankcruptcy, for example a friendly benefit match against Bayern Munich, donations etc., in addition the former management of the club (e.g. former president, former tax advisor) made vital financial contributions which secured the club's future.

Rise to the Bundesliga

After winning the 2010–11 Regionalliga Süd in dramatic fashion, Darmstadt were promoted to the 3. Liga. In 2012, Dirk Schuster was appointed as head coach, and he signed Darmstadt's future captain Aytaç Sulu. In the 2012–13 season the club was initially relegated but their fiercest rivals Kickers Offenbach were refused a 3. Liga licence due to going into administration and were relegated to the Regionalliga instead. SV Darmstadt 98 took Offenbach's place.[2]

In 2013–14 having finished third in league and thus gaining entry into the promotion-relegation play offs, Darmstadt defeated Arminia Bielefeld in the second leg through away goals after losing 1–3 in the first leg at home to secure promotion to 2. Bundesliga for the first time in 21 years in dramatic circumstances.

In the following 2. Bundesliga season Darmstadt surprised everyone by securing the 2nd spot in the league and securing promotion to the Bundesliga again after 33 years in their final league game against St. Pauli by winning 1–0 at home through a 70th minute free-kick by Tobias Kempe. This was the second consecutive promotion for the team, led again by coach Schuster, and captain Sulu.


The club's honours:



  • Hesse Cup
    • Winners: 1966, 1999, 2001, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2013
    • Runners-up: 1971, 2009, 2014

Recent seasons

The recent season-by-season performance of the club:[3][4]

Season Division Tier Position
1999–00 Regionalliga Süd III 9th
2000–01 Regionalliga Süd 5th
2001–02 Regionalliga Süd 14th
2002–03 Regionalliga Süd 17th ↓
2003–04 Oberliga Hessen IV 1st ↑
2004–05 Regionalliga Süd III 5th
2005–06 Regionalliga Süd 5th
2006–07 Regionalliga Süd 16th ↓
2007–08 Oberliga Hessen IV 1st ↑
2008–09 Regionalliga Süd 15th
2009–10 Regionalliga Süd 15th
2010–11 Regionalliga Süd 1st ↑
2011–12 3. Liga III 14th
2012–13 3. Liga 18th
2013–14 3. Liga 3rd ↑
2014–15 2. Bundesliga II 2nd ↑
2015–16 Bundesliga I 14th
2016–17 Bundesliga


Current squad

As of 31 August 2016[5]

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
1 Portugal GK Daniel Heuer Fernandes
2 Germany DF Leon Guwara (on loan from Werder Bremen)
3 Sweden DF Alexander Milošević (on loan from Beşiktaş)
4 Turkey DF Aytaç Sulu (Captain)
5 Germany DF Benjamin Gorka
6 Bosnia and Herzegovina MF Mario Vrančić
7 Ukraine DF Artem Fedetskyi
8 Germany MF Jérôme Gondorf
9 Germany FW Dominik Stroh-Engel
10 Germany MF Jan Rosenthal
11 Nigeria FW Victor Obinna
14 Slovenia FW Roman Bezjak
16 Croatia FW Antonio Čolak (on loan from Hoffenheim)
17 Germany DF Sandro Sirigu
18 Germany MF Peter Niemeyer
No. Position Player
19 Germany FW Felix Platte (on loan from Schalke 04)
20 Germany MF Marcel Heller
21 Germany DF Immanuel Höhn
22 Ukraine FW Denys Oliynyk
23 Germany MF Florian Jungwirth
24 Ukraine GK Ihor Berezovskyi
28 Tunisia MF Änis Ben-Hatira
30 Hungary MF László Kleinheisler (on loan from Werder Bremen)
31 Germany GK Michael Esser
32 Germany DF Fabian Holland
35 Germany MF Johannes Wolff
36 Germany DF Can Luca Aydogan
37 Germany DF Liam Fisch
38 Germany MF Daniel Thur
39 Germany FW Sven Schipplock (on loan from Hamburg)

On loan

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
Germany MF Yannick Stark (on loan to Frankfurt)

Current technical staff

As of June 2016.[6]
Position Name
Manager Germany Norbert Meier
Assistant manager Germany Sascha Franz
Goalkeeping coach Germany Dimo Wache
Fitness coach Germany Frank Steinmetz
Head physiotherapist Germany Dirk Schmitt
Club doctors Germany Dr. med. Michael Weingart
Germany Dr. med. Ingo Schwinnen
Germany Dr. med. Klaus Pöttgen
Team officials Germany Helmut "Bubu" Koch
Germany Utz Pfeiffer
Academy director Germany Björn Kopper
Academy Chief Coach Czech Republic Petr Ruman
Academy Coordinator Germany Tim Kuhl
Under-19s coaches Germany Richard Hasa
Germany Jonas Keblowsky
Under-17s coach Germany Steffen Kaschel
Under-16s coach Germany Jens Krinke

Former managers

The managers of the club:[7]

Start End Manager
1968 1970 Germany Heinz Lucas
1971 1976 Germany Udo Klug †
1978 1979 Germany Lothar Buchmann
1979 1979 Germany Klaus Schlappner
1979 1980 Germany Jörg Berger
1981 1982 Germany Werner Olk
1982 1983 Germany Manfred Krafft
1983 1984 Germany Timo Zahnleiter
1984 1984 Germany Lothar Kleim
1985 1986 Germany Udo Klug †
1986 1987 Germany Eckhard Krautzun
1987 1988 Germany Klaus Schlappner
1988 1989 Germany Werner Olk
1989 1989 Germany Eckhard Krautzun
1989 1990 Germany Dieter Renner
1990 1990 Germany Uwe Klimaschefski
1990 1991 Germany Jürgen Sparwasser
1994 1996 Germany Gerhard Kleppinger
1996 1996 Germany Max Reichenberger
1996 1998 Germany Lothar Buchmann
1999 2000 Germany Eckhard Krautzun
2000 2002 Germany Michael Feichtenbeiner
2002 2003 Germany Hans-Werner Moser
2003 2006 Germany Bruno Labbadia
2006 2006 Italy Gino Lettieri
2006 2009 Germany Gerhard Kleppinger
2009 2010 Serbia Živojin Juškić
March 24, 2010 Sept 2, 2012 Germany Kosta Runjaić
Sept 5, 2012 Dec 17, 2012 Germany Jürgen Seeberger
2012 2016 Germany Dirk Schuster
2016 Germany Norbert Meier


  1. "Mitglieder-Boom beim SV 98 – 5.000er-Marke geknackt" (in German). 11 June 2015. Retrieved 13 July 2015.
  2. Ruhl: "Ein bitterer Tag für den OFC" (German), published: 3 June 2013, accessed: 4 June 2013
  3. Das deutsche Fußball-Archiv (German) Historical German domestic league tables
  4. – Ergebnisse (German) Tables and results of all German football leagues
  5. "Kader: Darmstadt 98" (in German). SV Darmstadt 98. 3 July 2015. Retrieved 9 August 2015.
  6. "Die Trainer". SV Darmstadt 98. Retrieved 4 August 2015.
  7. SV Darmstadt 98 .:. Trainer von A-Z (German), accessed: 6 December 2011

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