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The biggest soccer derbies in the Bundesliga: Klassiker, Revierderby and more

Natalia Richardson

Updated: Oct 17, 2022 09:14

The biggest soccer derbies in the Bundesliga: Klassiker, Revierderby and more


Der Klassiker, the Revierderby, and the struggle for Rhineland supremacy are just a few of the biggest derbies in the Bundesliga.

Nothing stirs the emotions like a furious local derby, even though the Der Klassiker between perennial championship rivals Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund may be one of the most eagerly awaited games of any Bundesliga season. will introduce you the biggest derbies in the Bundesliga.

We look at some of the best rivalries in Germany, from Bavaria to Berlin via the Ruhr region and the Rhine.

Bavarian derby

Teams: Bayern and Augsburg

First match: 6 November 2011 – Bayern won 2-1

Most recent match: 9 April 2022 - Bayern won 1-0 in Munich

Bundesliga meetings: 22. Bayern have the upper hand with 17 wins, two draws and three defeats

Distance between clubs: 40.3 miles

Since Augsburg was first promoted to the Bundesliga in 2011, this event has only recently been added to the calendar. Even though Die Függerstädter and Bayern may not be able to compete in terms of history or on-field success, there is always an extra element of excitement when two teams from the very center of Bavaria face off.

Robert Lewandowski, a former striker for Bayern Munich, benefited from the tense environment and is the game's top scorer with 16 goals, including a record-setting 41st goal of the 2020–21 season. But it's not an entirely one-sided fixture. Bayern fell to Augsburg 2-1 last season.

The Revierderby

Teams: Dortmund and Schalke

First match:3 May 1925 - a 4-2 win for Schalke

Most recent match: 20 February 2021 - Dortmund won 4-0 in Gelsenkirchen

Bundesliga meetings: 98. Dortmund lead with 36 wins, 32 losses and 30 draws

Distance between clubs: 20.5 miles

The rivalry between Dortmund and Schalke, dubbed "the mother of all derbies," has grown into one of the most ferocious in all of football.

This is largely because two of the game's most fervent fan bases are competing for local bragging rights in Germany's industrial heartland, which for long years served as the nation's center for the manufacture of coal and steel. Both teams came from working-class communities and have a sizable fan base, representing the heart and passion of football.

Over the years, the Revierderby has produced many exciting games, but maybe none more so than the one in November 2017 when Dortmund jumped out to a 4-0 lead at the interval only to lose the lead after the break when Schalke scored a 94th-minute equalizer to force a 4-4 draw.

The Rhine derby

Teams: Cologne and Borussia Mönchengladbach

First match:January 1, 1962 - Cologne won 4-1

Most recent match: 16 April 2022 - Cologne won 3-1 away

Bundesliga meetings: 96. Gladbach lead the series with 51 wins, 27 losses and 16 draws

Distance between clubs: 35.4 miles

It took some time for this rivalry to ignite, but once it did, it has since burned as hot as any in Germany. Hennes Weisweiler, one of the club's favorite sons, was appointed manager of Gladbach, a team in the second tier, while Cologne cruised to the first-ever Bundesliga championship.

Hennes, the club's iconic goat mascot, is named after the former Cologne player and coach who led his new team to tremendous success in the Bundesliga and laid the groundwork for what would become one of Germany's top teams.

The Billy Goats, a big-city team, stagnated and fell short of expectations that they would rule the area. The hatred between the two sets of fans had already hardened into a permanent fixture by the time player-coach Günter Netzer scored the game-winning goal for Gladbach against Cologne in the 1973 DFB Cup final.


Cologne and Gladbach, two rivals in the Rhineland, never ask for or give concessions.


Teams: Hamburg and Werder Bremen

First match:13 March 1927 - a 4-1 win for Hamburg

Most recent match: 27 February 2022 - Bremen won 3-2 in Hamburg (Bundesliga 2)

Bundesliga meetings: 108. Werder lead the head-to-head with 39 wins, 34 losses and 35 draws

Distance between clubs:72 miles

The match between the two longest-tenured clubs in the league was formerly the most watched in the Bundesliga, prior to Hamburg's relegation at the conclusion of the 2017–18 campaign. Despite the fact that it has been a while since either of them last won a trophy, both remain among the most well-liked clubs in Germany.

The two have engaged in 130 competitive matches since they first met in a North German championship preliminary round. The rivalry reached its zenith in 2009 when they faced off four times in the space of just 18 days.

At the semifinal stage of the final UEFA Cup, two of the four games were played in European competition. Werder won 3-2 in Hamburg to go to the final on away goals after losing the first leg 1-0 at home.

However, the northern winds have changed. In their inaugural Bundesliga 2 game in Bremen last year, HSV prevailed, and Werder returned the favor by gaining immediate re-entry into the top division.

Berlin derby

Teams: Hertha Berlin and Union Berlin

First match:17 September 2010 (in Bundesliga 2) – a 1-1 draw

Most recent match: 6 August 2022 - A 3-1 Union win at the Alte Försterei

Bundesliga meetings: 7. Union have four wins to Hertha's two, plus one draw

Distance between clubs: 15 miles (between the two stadiums)

The teams' match on Matchday 10 of the 2019–20 season was significant because it was the first all–Berlin derby since German Reunification and the first Berlin derby in the Bundesliga in more than 40 years. The previous instance of this occurred in the 1976–77 season when Hertha faced Tennis Borussia Berlin.

Sebastian Pölter's second-half penalty gave East the victory against west on a memorable night at the Stadion a den Alten Försterei. In the rematch, played on Matchday 27, the Old Lady triumphed 4-0 at the Olympiastadion. A significant triumph considering Hertha just completed the season ahead of the Bundesliga's newest team on goal differential. The Old Lady then won the opening match of the 2020–21 season at home before drawing away in the east, allowing Die Eisernen to become the first club from the capital to finish higher than Hertha in the Bundesliga. Since then, Union has won four straight derbies, including one in the round of 16 of the DFB Cup in 2021–2022.

Der Klassiker

Teams: Bayern and Dortmund

First match:16 October 1965 - a 2-0 win for BVB in Munich

Most recent match: 23 April 2022 - Bayern won 3-1 in Munich

Bundesliga meetings: 106. Bayern lead with 52 wins to Borussia's 25 (29 draws)

Distance between clubs: 372 miles

This is not a territory fight in the neighborhood, nor is it even a conflict over regional pride. Games involving the only two teams to win the Bundesliga championship in the last ten years are always intense and, as was the case in 2021/22, have frequently determined the outcome of the Meisterschale in recent years.

Since this rivalry was developed out of pure competition between the teams to be the best, the fan bases are not afraid to express their feelings for one another.

The Lewandowski element just increased the gravity of the situation. The international player from Poland scored 103 goals in 187 games for Dortmund before transferring to Bayern on a free transfer in the summer of 2014. Before going to Barcelona in the summer of 2022, he scored over 300 goals across all competitions for the record champions, including 23 of his own in 16 league games versus his previous employers.

A special relationship

Of course, it hasn't always been one-way traffic. On the final day of the 2012–13 season, Bayern came back from a 3-1 deficit after just 10 minutes to defeat Gladbach 4-3 and set a new Bundesliga points record of 91 on their route to a historic triple.

In the 100th Bundesliga matchup between the two teams in April 2018, the Bavarians romped to a 5-1 triumph at Borussia-Park but fell to their rivals 3-0 at home earlier in the year.

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