LIBERATING FOOTBALL TRAVEL

SC Paderborn

Brief Bundesliga forays for boys from Benteler-Arena

A fan’s guide – the club from early doors to today

Promoted to the Bundesliga for the first time in 2014, SC Paderborn went straight back down after only one season. And then, back down again. Then again, the club hardly has a long pedigree in the modern game.

The union of FC Paderborn and TuS Schloß Neuhaus, whose history dates back to 1907, SC Paderborn were formed as TuS Paderborn-Neuhaus in 1985.

Representing communities 5km apart from each other, the clubs had been playing the Westphalia Verbandsliga and Oberliga, Schloß Neuhaus claiming one short season in the Zweite Bundesliga in 1982-83.

SC Paderborn kiosk/Peterjon Cresswell

It took the new combined club, later named SC Paderborn, 20 years to climb from the regional league to the Zweite Bundesliga. Once promoted, in 2005, Paderborn stayed up for three seasons, goals coming from journeyman striker René Müller.

After a one-season stint in the third, Paderborn came back up and stayed there. Paderborn-born Mahir Saglik set up and scored the goals to push the club to fifth place in 2010. Two years later, they managed fifth again, goals from later Hull striker Nick Proschwitz pushing Paderborn above Munich 1860 and Union Berlin.

Saglik returned to become joint top league scorer in the promotion season of 2013-14, chances provided by young midfielder Mario Vrancic. André Breitenreiter’s high-scoring side overcame a leaky defence to outpoint Greuther Fürth, despite a stoppage-time equaliser from the visitors when the promotion challengers met at the Benteler-Arena in April.

SCP07-Shop/Peterjon Cresswell

An equally late goal from Kai Bülow for Munich 1860 at Fürth the following week put Paderborn back in the driving seat and promotion was secured on the last day.

The club with one of the smallest budgets in the Zweite was now facing the Bayerns and Dortmunds of this world.

Bolstering the midfield with former Getafe star Rafa López, Lukas Rupp from Borussia Mönchengladbach and Marvin Bakalorz from Dortmund’s title-winning squad of 2012, Breitenreiter put his faith in Elias Kachunga and Moritz Stoppelkamp to score goals.

Benteler-Arena/Peterjon Cresswell

Sure enough, with a 3-0 win at Hamburg and 2-0 victory over Hannover, Paderborn were top of the Bundesliga after four games. Creditable draws with Leverkusen and Dortmund followed, Saglik playing himself back into contention.

Favourites for the drop, Paderborn have managed to surprise everyone, the revelation being ex-jailbird Süleyman Koc, who turned his life around at improving Babelsberg in his native Berlin before joining Breitenreiter’s men in 2014. Sadly, Paderborn could barely register a goal a game in 2014-15 and finished bottom of the Bundesliga.

And then, a year later, bottom of the Zweite… Paderborn would then have fallen out of the 3.Liga had it not been for the timely collapse of TSV München 1860. With former Hansa Rostock striker Steffen Baumgart in charge, the club picked up in 2017-18 and looks set for a return to the Zweite.

Stadium Guide

The field of dreams – and the stands around it

Hosting Bundesliga football for the first time in 2014-15, the Benteler-Arena was built at a cost of €25 million between 2005 and 2008. Delays included a two-year legal hiatus due to objections from local residents.

Holding just over 15,000, 9,000 standing, the stadium superseded the Herman-Löns-Stadion, built in the 1950s. This was the ground used by Schloß Neuhaus for their single season in the Zweite Bundesliga in 1982-83.

Given its limitations, and location in Schloß Neuhaus, a new stadium was required for the newly formed SC Paderborn.

Originally named the Paragon Arena, today’s Benteler-Arena won out over seven other potential sites, including the nearby Ahorn-Sportpark.

Benteler-Arena/Peterjon Cresswell

A year after its curtain-raising match between Paderbon and Galatasaray, the stadium hosted a Germany U-21 international with Belarus. Evening fixtures are not possible due to a compromise agreement with residents.

The setting is still rural – the nearest bar is attached to the nearest store, one that sells farm equipment, beside head-high rows of sweetcorn fields.

This bucolic scene faces the Ost- and Nord-Tribünen, away fans are allocated, sectors E-G. Home fans convene in the Süd-Tribüne (aka FINKE-Fantribüne) nearest the main road.

Press and VIPs are placed in the main West-Tribüne, behind which you’ll find the club shop.

getting there

Going to the stadium – tips and timings

Buses 6 and 68 leave from stop 7 on Bahnhofstraße opposite Paderborn main station – just cross the road, heading diagonally right as you exit. Both go to the Arena/Almeaue stop on the main road by the stadium, taking slightly different routes (the 6, 8 stops/10mins; the 68, 7 stops/8mins).

On match days, extra buses are laid on from Westerntor near the station to the stadium and match-ticket holders ride free. There are also shuttle buses from the city centre and, for away fans, from the station.

The rest of the week, regular buses run every 30mins, every hr Sat eve and Sun.

getting in

Buying tickets – when, where, how and how much

Tickets go on sale 14 days before each upcoming home game.

A handful of outlets distribute in downtown Paderborn, including Klingenthal Sport (2nd floor, Westernstraße 22-24), Ticket-Direct (Königstraße 62) and the offices of the newspaper Westfälisches Volksblatt (Rosenstraße 16).

Tickets are also sold at the SCP07-Shop (Mon-Fri 10am-6pm, Sat 10am-1pm) at the stadium and on the day from the Kassen behind the Ost-Tribüne.

Online sales are organised by Eventim Sports.

With the drop down to the 3.Liga, admission is affordable. Standing tickets in the home Süd- or Nordtribüne are €10, seats are €20-€27. Under-14s are charged less than half price, under-5s a couple of euros.

what to buy

Shirts, kits, merchandise and gifts

Set by the main office behind the Westtribüne, the modest SCP07-Shop (Mon-Fri 10am-6pm, Sat 10am-1pm, match days) proffers standard gear in blue and black, as well as a somewhat bizarre CD (Helden geben nie auf) of four SCP fan songs and branded lunchbox.

Where to Drink

Pre-match beers for fans and casual visitors

There are no bars at the stadium, stuck out on the far west of town. The only outlet close by is a match-day Warsteiner beer stand attached to a farm equipment shop, Hofladen Kuhlenkamp, behind the Osttribüne.

Assuming you’re not attracted by the dining outlet, La Cantina, at the finke department store alongside, your best best is to cross the main road and walk 8mins down Almeaue, away from the stadium, to the Ahorn-Sportpark.

Inside the main doors, the Ahorn-Sportbar displays support for its basketball team and local squash star Simon Rösner, as well as SCP. There’s TV sports action too. Opening hours vary but weekends should see it busy.