Thursday, 29 October 2015

Dynamo Berlin - a club with a sinister past

Maybe not the closest club to Stasi HQ in East Berlin when it come to distance (that honour falls to Lichtenberg 47) but Dynamo Berlin certainly had the closet ties to the East German Secret Police.

Dynamo have certainly had a difficult time since unification, they changed their name to distance themselves from their shady past but they also in the process attracted a far right following but it seems they have got back on the right track – at least in football terms and recent promotion has seen them move their first team games to the Freidrich-Ludwig-Jahn Sportspark, former part-time  home of the East German national team and now used for the Berlin Cup final.

The ground is part of a large sports complex, well worth a visit as it sat just a few metres from the old Berlin Wall. A no-man’s land used to sit between the two walls but is now called Mauer Park, home of a large Berlin flea market held every Sunday.

Colourful seats, a roof but the ground still has a 70’s Iron Curtain feel – but the new seats have made it one of the most photogenic grounds in Europe

Their ‘real’ home is the Sports Forum at Hohenschonhausen, and the size of the complex quickly indicates that Dynamo had friends in high places in the former DDR state. The actual ground may not be that great but the complex is one that many premier clubs would be proud of.

As mentioned at the start, Lichtenberg 47 play in a ground closer to Stasi HQ but more chilling maybe the fact that on the same street as the Dynamo home is the former Stasi prison – certainly i am sure many referees were aware of the close proximity of the much feared building.

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