22 Votes

Years without a German Football Champion

Info by Collin McNeil | 2024-04-18 at 02:52

Since the German Football Association began determining a German Champion in men's Bundesliga football in 1903, it has happened eight times that no German Champion (Deutscher Meister) has been or could not be determined.

This concerns the years 1904, 1915 to 1919, 1922 as well as 1945. What happened in detail in these years, I would like to describe in this article.

War-Related Cancellations

In the years 1915 to 1919 (First World War) as well as 1945 (Second World War) the German Champion was not determined because of the respective wars.

German Championships 1922

In 1922, Hamburger SV (HSV) and 1. FC Nürnberg were in the finals of the German Championship (at that time, the German Champion was not yet determined based on points). When the score was still tied after 189 minutes of play (2-2), the game was canceled due to darkness, as the Berlin stadium did not yet have floodlights at that time.

Even in a replay seven weeks later, no clear winner could be determined, since this game also had to be abandoned with a score of 1:1 after 112 minutes of play. This time the reason was that after three dismissals and one injury, the Nuremberg team could no longer muster the required minimum number of eight players.

Although the DFB declared Hamburg as "German Champions 1922" after this game, the HSV returned the title for reasons of fairness. After that, there was no further replay of the game.

German Championships 1904

In 1904 there was no German Football Champion either. At that time, after a successful semi-final, VfB Leipzig were supposed to play against Berlin TuFC Britannia 92 in the finals.

However, before the game kicked off, the Karlsruher FV complained to the DFB because the DFB had scheduled the quarter-final game between Karlsruher FV and Berlin TuFC Britannia 92 in Berlin and thus violated the rule of holding the final round games at a neutral location. While the Berliners were able to play in their hometown, the Karlsruher FV team needed 13 hours to travel to Berlin and even arrived in Berlin not before the day of the match because some important players had not been given leave for the trip. The game ended 6-1 for the Berliners, Karlsruhe was thrown out of the championship and blamed the aforementioned circumstances for it.

The DFB then canceled the finals at short notice in the morning of the final and canceled the entire championship without any other determination of a champion.

Corona-Related Cancellations

In contrast, play continued during the Corona pandemic, so that there is a German football champion for every Corona year.

In every season that fell into the Corona period, the record champion FC Bayer Munich became German champion, as in the previous years. This series only ended in 2024, when Bayer Leverkusen got the title for the first time.


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