Following on from Wednesday’s successful trip to
Tomorrow sees Steve Bruce’s
Want to know where to go, what to do and most importantly where to sample an ale or ten? Of course you do, that’s why you’re here! Read on intrepid travellers!
Arminia Bielefeld, whilst most commonly known for their exploits on the football field also operate as a sports club, competing in the likes of field hockey, figure skating and even cue sports. Lets hope the lads have arranged to play the correct sport here, although watching Titus Bramble figure skate could be worth the admission fee itself.
Founded in 1905 the German outfit find themselves in the third tier of the national league following relegation last term. Relegation is nothing new to the side as, a bit like ourselves, in recent history they have become some what of a "yo-yo club" and hold the record for the number of promotions to the Bundesliga: Seven.
If relegation wasn't enough to concern the Bielefeld fans the financial cloud which hangs over the Stadium certainly will. Reportedly over 27m euros in the red has forced the club to re-apply for a league licence to allow them to compete in the third division next term.
The Schuco Arena was opened in 1926 and has undergone a number of renovations over the years, most recently in 2007 with the completion of the new main stand, which increased the capacity to 28,000.
The new main stand itself is home to a number of architectural innovations the club are proud of, including an energy saving solar roof which generates electricity for the Stadium and also a number of offices for lease.
Watch out when parking around the stadium, as the Polizei are likely to give you a ticket just because they feel like it, as detailed here.
Us for us away fans, you'll be in their version of the South Stand, on a rather steep stand in what I'd say is a 'proper' stadium. they do do them well over in Germany I must say. Have a look at the view you'll have in the Schuco Arena here.
The most famous tourist point of interest
The ground itself is a short distance away from the City Centre, so the best bet would seem to be not to venture to far from the bright lights if you are after an ale or too before, or after kick off.
Bielefeld has a lot to offer by the ways of watering holes, as you’d expect, ranging from live music at the Extra Blues Bar, the American themed New Orleans Bar and Edelweiss Lounge and Bar, which screen the live football, so it can be assumed they are away fan friendly.
PLAYED FOR BOTH
Believe it or not I was unable to unearth any gems that may have graced both sides... but former Boro midfielder Christian Ziege was in charge of our German opponents until he was given the push last November in favour of Ewald Lienen.
So stay tuned over the course of the German tour for more previews should you be making the trip and for the low down on what went on at the games from our amigos' Seventy3.
Much thanks to Andy Hudson of Gannin' Away too for going to Bielefeld once and telling us all about it. Read his rather marvellous blog here.
The newest Roker Report Podcast is out, so grab it from here – http://itunes.apple.com/gb/podcast/the-roker-report-podcast-www/id437085978