UPDATED FOR 2023-24 - AUGUST 2023
SV WERDER BREMEN
Founded: Feb 4, 1899
Club Members: 42,407
Nickname: Die Grün-Weißen
Coach: Ole Werner
Captain: Marco Friedl
German Champions / Bundesliga: 4
German Super Cup Winner: 3
Bundesliga.2 Champions: 1
European Cup Winners Cup: 1
Hailing from the proud Hanseatic city of Bremen, Werder are one of the oldest clubs in Germany after being formed in 1899 by a group of local students who had won a football in a tug-of-war competition. The name 'Werder ' means 'River Peninsula' and the club's first ground was in fact on an island in the Weser River running through the heart of the city.
Werder Bremen are a relatively recent success story and so their influence on German football is regarded by fans as minimal. However, after spending much of their formative period as an uncompetitive club competing in local championships, enough progress was made for the German FA to invite them to be part of the inaugural Bundesliga season in 1963.
The opportunity was seized with both hands and the club stormed to the Bundesliga title in 1964-65, before a second-place finish was achieved in 1967-68. After this initial success, things settled down during the 1970s and Bremen became a stable, mid-table club. This wasn't enough for some at the club however and Werder set out to improve their fortunes by splashing the cash on a number of expensive new signings. Much to the glee of rival fans who had dubbed them "Millionenelf " (roughly translating as the 'Millionaire Team'), the gamble didn't pay off and the club experienced relegation from the top flight for the first and only time in 1980.
Following an immediate promotion under new manager Otto Rehhagel the following season, Werder have since remained a Bundesliga fixture, and no other club has played more matches in Germany's top league. Rehhagel stayed to oversee the most successful period in Werder Bremen's history as the club won two Bundesliga titles, two DFB-Pokals and the European Cup Winners Cup before he was lured to Bavaria in 1995 for an ill-fated spell in charge of Bayern München.
Back in Bremen, a succession of coaches - amongst them Aad de Mos, Wolfgang Sidka and Felix Magath - tried and failed to replicate Rehhagel's success, and by May 1999 the club was once again staring into the abyss of relegation. Reserve team coach and former Werder defender Thomas Schaaf was tasked with arresting the slide and he secured survival on the last day of the season. A few days later, he also led Bremen to a DFB-Pokal final victory over Bayern München. Under Schaaf, the club stabilised and regularly challenged for honours. A Bundesliga and DFB-Pokal double was won in 2004, followed by the club's first ever DFB Liga Pokal in 2006 as they became regular UEFA Champions League qualifiers. A narrow defeat to Shaktar Donetsk in the 2009 UEFA Cup Final saw them miss out on another European trophy, but that disappointment was put aside a few days later as a 1-0 win over Bayer Leverkusen secured another DFB-Pokal.
That win however papered over the cracks as Werder had begun to struggle maintaining the challenge for trophies. By 2013 Thomas Schaaf had resigned, ending a 41-year association with club (he returned as caretaker coach for the last game of the 2020-21 season), as the former champions ended another disappointing league campaign in a lowly 14th place.
Since Schaaf’s departure the club has never finished higher than 8th in the Bundesliga and can no longer claim to be competing with the elite of German football. With an average finishing position of 11th over the last decade Werder began casting more anxious glances towards the bottom of the table than at the top - none more so than in 2020 when the Grun-Weißen needed a promotion/relegation play-off victory on away goals over second-tier 1.FC Heidenheim 1846 to preserve their Bundesliga status. A year later however, fate finally caught up with Bremen and relegation meant a return to the second-tier for the first time since 1980 before bouncing back last season at the first time of asking.
Ground Name: Wohninvest WESERSTADION
Year Opened: 1947
Renovations: 1926, 1947, 1963 - 1965, 1978, 1989, 1992, 1997, 2005, 2009 - 2011
Capacity: 42,100 (10,600 standing)
Executive Boxes: 81
Executive Box Seats: 1,635
Media Seats: 80
Wheelchair Spaces: 120
Undersoil Heating: Yes
Running Track: No
Floodlights: 1,500 lux
LED Video Screens: 74m² x 2
Playing Surface: Natural Grass
Pitch Size: 105m x 68m
ABTS Kampfbahn (1926 - 1930)
Weserstadion (1930 -1934)
Bremer Kampfbahn (1934 - 1945)
IKE Stadion (1945 - 1947)
Weserstadion (1947 - 2019)
Wohinvest Weserstadion (2019 - ) *
* Stadium Renamed
Unlike many German clubs, Werder Bremen long resisted the urge to sell stadium naming rights every few years, and until 2019 the Weserstadion had remained 'Weserstadion' (Stadium at the River Weser) since opening next to the River Weser in 1947. Its location on the Pauliner Marsch floodplain however, although scenic, does carry the risk of flooding and the stadium very nearly became a victim of a tidal surge caused by Cyclone Xavier across northern Europe in 2013.
For much of it's history, the stadium (currently the oldest in the Bundesliga) changed very little from it's original design - an oval concrete bowl, with open terraces, large empty spaces behind each goal and a running track separating the pitch from the stands.
In 2002 the stadium underwent a programme of expansion as the running track was partially removed, the pitch lowered by a couple of metres and the stands down the length of the pitch were straightened. In 2008 however, it was decided to extensively remodel the stadium with plans to add a third tier, to remove the iconic floodlights and increase capacity to 50,000. However, rising costs and local concerns about increased match traffic adding to the already congested roads leading into the city centre a short distance away, led to the plans being reviewed. A more moderate renovation took place instead and the previously oval stadium was given a rectangular outline as the large spaces at each end were removed and the stands brought closer to the pitch. A new roof was built and a 'wrap-around' facade fitted with solar panels gives the Weserstadion a unique look.
Bremen's home end is the Ostkurve in the East End of the stadium with access to the lower tier terrace being via Blocks 122 - 142. The rest of the ground is all-seating only. The travelling support are in the upper tier of the opposite West Stand (Blocks 101-103) and, if the demand requires it, in Blocks 107-113.
2022-2023: 41,526 (Bundesliga)
2021-2022: 26,972 (Bundesliga) *
2020-2021: N/A *
2019-2020: 26,413 (Bundesliga) *
2018-2019: 41,403 (Bundesliga)
* Season affected by COVID pandemic
Expected Ticket Availability
Despite Bremen's on-field fortunes tailing off in recent years, demand for tickets remains high; and hate-filled Nordderby clashes with public enemy No.1 Hamburger SV, or Bundesliga clashes with Bayern and Dortmund will sell-out. The advice therefore is to get organised and buy your ticket well in advance. This will also ensure you have a good choice of where to sit/stand and to be able to avoid the lower tier immediately below the away support chucking their beer and other stuff around. Ticket prices are on the steep side so early booking will also help you avoid being left with only the more expensive seats to choose from.
Bremen's 'Ausländer' (Foreigner) friendly online ticket shop gives you information about buying tickets in English. You could always give them a ring or send an email to the club explaining what you're after if you prefer. The usual ABC approach to categorising matches is used here and most matches are rated as B. Roughly speaking therefore, expect to pay €25 - €75 for seats, and €17 to stand on the terraces.
Tickets can also be bought from the ticket office at the ground if you already find yourself in Bremen (9am-6pm, Mon-Thu; 9am-4pm, Fri; 9am-6pm on a matchday).
The club operates its own Ticket Exchange site and so this might throw up late tickets if you're looking at attending a match that has already sold-out. More information can be found here.
Information about visiting the Wohninvest WESERSTADION for fans with disabilities can be found at:
GETTING THERE & AWAY
Franz Böhmert Straße 1
Heading along the A1 from the east or west of Bremen, exit at junction 55 - Bremen-Hemelingen. Follow Autobahnzubringer Hemelingen in the direction of the city centre until it becomes Pfalzburger Straße. Follow the road to the end and turn left into Malerstraße. After 200 metres, turn right onto Hastedter Osterdeich and the stadium will be on your left after a mile. If coming from the north or south, follow the A27 and join the A1 at Kreuz Bremen (junction 53). From there, follow the directions described above.
Arriving by car at the stadium is a bit of a nightmare however as the surrounding area is closed off to all traffic (except residents and permit holders) two-and-half hours before a match and, on top of this, car parks 1-6 at the stadium are only open to parking permit holders. You MIGHT, if you arrive early enough, find a spot to park up near to the ground, but otherwise Bremen's Park + Ride options at Hansa-Carré (the club ask that you use the upper parking deck), Pfalzburger Straße and Hemelinger Hafen are your best bet - although heavy traffic is also a feature of matchdays at Werder Bremen.
If you have a match ticket, you can use buses and trains within the BASAG and VBN transport regions to travel to and from the stadium on matchdays from six hours before kick-off until close of business that day.
From Bremen's Hauptbahnhof, catch tram 10 (Direction: Sebaldsbrück) and jump off at St-Jürgen Straße. From here you have two options. Either continue by tram - in which case hop on Tram 3 (Direction: Weserwehr) which will take you to the Weserstadion stop; or turn right onto Lüneberger Straße, left onto Osterdeich and walk the last 300 yards to the stadium. Whichever way you choose, journey time from the main station to the ground shouldn't take you more than 15-20 minutes.
For a completely different way of getting to the match, you can hop on a ferry and stand on the deck shouting "Auf Gehts Grun-Weißen! " whilst everyone else is stuck in the traffic snarl. Werder Bremen teamed up with local ferry operators 'Hal Över' in 2009 and on a matchday ferries shuttle between the Vegesack, Waterfront/Pier 2 and Martinianleger landings to the Weser-Stadion/Pauliner Marsch jetty. Departures from Vegesack and Waterfront/Pier 2 have to be reserved in advance and further information can be found at www.hal-oever.de
The Sielwall ferry will also take you over the Weser from Café Sand (The Sielwall ferry will also take you over the Weser from Café Sand (Strandweg 106, 28201 Bremen) to the Osterdeich jetty just along the river from the ground. Note though that your match ticket doesn't include the cost of travelling to the stadium along the Weser River.
The Weserstadion is about a mile from Bremen's centre and is an easy walk along the banks of the river. With the UNESCO listed town hall behind you, head straight across the square and through the staggered red-brick lined Böttcherstraße. Follow this lane past all the artisan shops, the Glockenspiel and the Radisson Blu Hotel. You'll now reach the junction with Martini Straße. Use the subway to cross this road and you'll find yourself on the north bank of the Weser River. Follow the river for about a mile always keeping the river on your right side, and you'll see the stadium in the distance.
FAN SHOP, MUSEUM & STADIUM TOURS
The 'Werder Fan Welt' is situated over two floors at the east end of the stadium (10am-6pm, Mon-Fri; 10am-3:30pm, Sat).
There is a club museum at the stadium called the 'Wuseum' (Adult/concession €4/€2; 11am-4pm, Tue-Fri; 11am-3pm Sat and public holidays; closed on matchdays). Further information can be found here.
Guided tours including the away dressing room, press centre and VIP areas are conducted around the Weserstadion on non-match days. Private tours are also available and all tours include admission to the Wuseum. More details, prices and booking information can be found here.
FOOD & DRINK OPTIONS
The stadium is on the river close to a residential neighbourhood, however there's not much in the way of somewhere to eat or drink except the usual matchday stands selling fast food and local beer. Satisfy your hunger pangs and thirst in the city centre before heading out to the ground. The usual fast food options are available inside the ground and everything can be paid for with the usual cashless and contactless methods (credit/debit cards, Apple Pay, Google Pay etc). The official beer at the stadium is Hakke-Beck Pils - a brew that is the result of a long term partnership between the club and local brewery Becks. If you fancy meeting up with members of Werder's support then head to Taubenschlag (Auf dem Peterswerder 6, 28205) - one of the pre-match drinking dens near the ground. And if someone invites you to try 'The Hanged One', just remember to chew the anchovy first and then drink the liquor !
OTHER CLUBS IN THE AREA
BUNDESLIGA: VfL Wolfsburg
BUNDESLIGA 2: FC St. Pauli, Hamburger SV, Hannover 96, SC Paderborn, VfL Osnabrück
3.LIGA: DSC Arminia Bielefeld, Preußen Münster, SC Verl