KSV Hessen Kassel

A club that refuses to die, although if it were a cat, it would have already used up about 8 lives.

The original club was founded in 1947 through a merger of VfL Kassel and Kasseler Sportverein. By 1950 they had qualified for the new Zweite Liga Sud, and by 1953, they achieved promotion to the Oberliga Sud, which was then the highest division. 1964 saw Hessen qualify for the Bundesliga promotion playoffs, but they were unable to make the final leap. After a few up and down years, by the mid 1980s, they had established themselves as a strong 2nd division club. Indeed, in 1984/85, promotion to the Bundesliga was again close, and only a last day defeat in Nuernberg knocked them out. Things started to go downhill slowly, and the financial woes began to snowball. In 1993, KSV Hessen Kassel declared bankruptcy. Luckily the soccer division declared themselves independant as FC Hessen Kassel and was able to qualify for the new Regionalliga structure that had just been introduced for the 3rd division. Life in the tougher 3rd division proved to be difficult, and the financial crisis continued.

Lights went out momentarily on January 13, 1998: After the line-of-credit expired, Hessen Kassel was forced to declare bankruptcy. The DFB then declared all of Kassel's games in the Regionalliga Süd for null and void, thereby relegating the club.

In February of 1998, the club was refounded as Kasseler Sport Verein Hessen. Same as the old name. How they pulled that off, is anybody's guess...

The new KSV Hessen was forced to start back in the 8th division Kreisliga A, and all player contracts were dissolved. However, the youth program was rescued, and enough firepower remained loyal to the club that one can expect a return to higher divisions within a few years. Things started out nicely, as the new club was unbeaten in league play for two years, winning promotions along the way. By 2002/03, they had made it all the way back to the Oberliga, and in less than 10 years, they were back in the Regionalliga!

Fullname Kasseler Sportverein Hessen e.V.
City Kassel (Hessen). Pop: 195,000 (2002)
Address Belgische Str. 21, 34121 Kassel
Phone: (0561) 25474. This is also the location of the Fan-Shop.
e-mail: info@ksv-hessen.de
Colors Basically all red with white trim.
Stadium Auestadion. Capacity: 26,000 (4,500 seats)
Built in 1953. They packed in 37,000 for the Bundesliga promotion round in 1964 against Hannover.
Tickets Very reasonable, at 6-8 euros (2004).
Supporters Averaged 2,064 in 2004 (Oberliga). A few fans clubs are listed on the Lowen-Online page, including one in Midland, Texas. They drew about 1,500 when they dropped down to the 8th division, which is pretty amazing. See official site for detailed descriptions of fan-clubs.
Friends Leyton Orient. Well, maybe. However, there is a German Leyton Orient home page, which links to the Hessen Kassel page with the comment "the only German club worth following."
Heroes German international Karl-Heinz "Gala" Metzner (2 caps, 1952-53)
Foes Most likely Hessen rivals, like Darmstadt and Kickers Offenbach.
Beer Kasseler Premium Pils and Martini Weissbier from the Martini Brewery in Kassel. (How do you brew a Martini?)
Pub Grub
The Net The official site disappears after each bankruptcy. It's now back as www.ksv-hessen.de . Look quick! Oops too late. But if they're bankrupt again, don't despair: Frank Rudolph runs an excellent fan page at www.ksv-hessen-kassel.de He deserves kudos because he kept them alive in the web all along.

Recent History:

1963-64	(II)	Regionalliga Süd	1st
1964-65	(II)	Regionalliga Süd	5th
1965-66	(II)	Regionalliga Süd	6th
1966-67	(II)	Regionalliga Süd	8th
1967-68	(II)	Regionalliga Süd	8th
1968-69	(II)	Regionalliga Süd	10th
1969-70	(II)	Regionalliga Süd	7th
1970-71	(II)	Regionalliga Süd	3rd
1971-72	(II)	Regionalliga Süd	4th
1972-73	(II)	Regionalliga Süd	10th
1973-74	(II)	Regionalliga Süd	16th
1974-75	(III)	Amateurliga Hessen	3rd
1975-76	(III)	Amateurliga Hessen	3rd
1976-77	(III)	Amateurliga Hessen	3rd
1977-78	(III)	Amateurliga Hessen	6th
1978-79	(III)	Am.Oberliga Hessen	2nd
1979-80	(III)	Am.Oberliga Hessen	1st
1980-81	(II)	2.Bundesliga Süd	4th
1981-82	(II)	2.Bundesliga		8th
1982-83	(II)	2.Bundesliga		4th
1983-84	(II)	2.Bundesliga		4th
1984-85	(II)	2.Bundesliga		4th
1985-86	(II)	2.Bundesliga		5th
1986-87	(II)	2.Bundesliga		19th
1987-88	(III)	Am.Oberliga Hessen	2nd
1988-89	(III)	Am.Oberliga Hessen	1st
1989-90	(II)	2.Bundesliga		17th
1990-91	(III)	Am.Oberliga Hessen	1st
1991-92	(III)	Am.Oberliga Hessen	3rd
1992-93	(III)	Am.Oberliga Hessen	5th
1993-94	(III)	Am.Oberliga Hessen	6th
1994-95	(III)	Regionalliga Süd	13th
1995-96	(III)	Regionalliga Süd	10th
1996-97	(III)	Regionalliga Süd	12th
1997-98	(III)	Regionalliga Süd	18th (bankruptcy: results annulled)
1998-99	(VIII)	Kreisliga Hessen, A	1st
1999-00	(VII)	Bezirksliga Kassel	1st
2000-01	(VI)	Bezirksoberliga Kassel	1st
2001-02	(V)	Landesliga Hessen/Nord	1st
2002-03 (IV)	Oberliga Hessen		2nd
2003-04 (IV)	Oberliga Hessen		2nd
2004-05 (IV)	Oberliga Hessen		10th
2005-06	(IV)	Oberliga Hessen		1st
2006-07	(III)	Regionalliga Süd	10th
2007-08	(III)	Regionalliga Süd	14th
2008-09 (IV)    Regionalliga Süd

(c) Abseits Guide to Germany