The Millerntor-Stadion, while officially labelled as multi-use, is best known as the home of cult football club FC St. Pauli.
Part of the club’s cult status derives from the stadium’s location near the Reeperbahn, Hamburg’s red-light area.
The stadium opened in 1963 with a capacity of 32,000, since reduced to as low as 20,000 owing to safety measures imposed on the club. Current capacity has risen again to just under 30,000.
The venue was renamed for a short time in 1970 as the Wilhelm-Koch-Stadion in honour of one of the club’s former presidents until his Nazi Party connections were uncovered.
Millerntor-Stadion Important Stats & Figures
St Pauli’s beautiful brick and glass-fronted home ground cannot be conveyed by facts and stats alone, but here are some key ones:
- Built: 1961 – 1963
- Opened: 1963
- Renovated: 1988
- Expanded: periodically between 2006 and 2015
- Current Capacity: 29,546
- Record Attendance: 29,546 – a full house was achieved for the match against Arminia Bielefeld in July 2015
- Pitch: there is a pure grass surface here, measuring the standard 105 metres by 68 metres
- Stands: at the two ends are the Südtribüne or ‘South Bank’ and the Nordtribüne/Nordkurve; housing the tunnel and business seats is the Haupttribüne and, to the east, the smaller Gegentribüne stand
Memorable Games at the Millerntor-Stadion
Both the ground and the club have seen their share of drama down the years. Given their importance and/or the nature of the wins for St Pauli, these four matches stand out:
FC St. Pauli 3-2 SV Darmstadt 98
By the time of the 1987-88 season, St Pauli was riding high and challenging for promotion to the Bundesliga.
The Millerntor was rocking in October when promotion rivals Darmstadt came to town, and the final result went a long way towards St Pauli edging Darmstadt out by three points. to go up as runners-up.
The event was dramatic as the away side began the game by cruising into a 2-0 lead. Ultimately though, goals from Hans-Jürgen Bargfrede (2) and Rüdiger Wenzel, right on the full-time whistle, completed a great comeback and settled the affair in St Pauli’s favour.
FC St. Pauli 2-0 Hansa Rostock
St Pauli was again heading for the runner-up position in the 2. Bundesliga (the second division of professional football in Germany) and promotion to the top level during the 1994-95 season when they came up against Hansa Rostock in February.
The club had developed a local rivalry with Hansa, one of the few neighbouring teams in the northeast of Germany, who were promotion contenders themselves.
A hard-fought 2-0 win helped to condemn Hansa to third place and bring St. Pauli a sweet victory, with goals from Juri Sawitschew and Jens Scharping.
FC St. Pauli 3-0 FC Augsburg
Throughout the 2009-10 season in the 2. Bundesliga, these two sides had been in close contention for promotion places and when they met at Millerntor-Stadion in April the match was crucial and the fixture attracted a crowd of 23,000.
It was game number 30 of 34 and the third-last at home for St Pauli so they badly needed a result, and did not disappoint!
Despite a tense first half, a 32-minute blast ensured victory for the home team with goals from Matthias Lehmann and Marius Ebbers (2). St Pauli was once again promoted to the Bundesliga in second place.
FC St. Pauli 2-0 Hamburger SV
September 2019 saw an average start to the league season with St Pauli once again in the second tier. Now they played their city rivals, Hamburg, a team they hadn’t beaten at home in a run of nine games stretching back to 1978.
In front of a sold-out Millerntor, St Pauli was excellent and took an 18th-minute lead through Dimitris Diamantakos.
A highly competitive evening derby fixture was finally settled in favour of St Pauli when Rick van Drongelen put the ball through his own net on the hour mark, leading to frantic displays of understandable joy in the stands.
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