|East Germany beat West Germany at the WC Finals in 1974|
Please also see my All-Time World Cup Team Index.
East German players after 1990
German Americans/American Germans
German-born Players Capped by Other National Teams
Germany All-Time Team After Beckenbauer
Germany All-Time Team before 1972
This is the all-time team for East Germany. If there were an All-Time World Cup, this would be the 23 players I would bring to the tournament.
During the existence of German Democratic Republic(East Germany), the country was known as a sporting power, but they never could match West Germany for football. Their lone achievement was winning the Gold Medal at the 1976 Olympics beating Poland in the Final. Poland actually fielded a team almost identical to their World Cup team in 1974, where they finished a respectable third. East Germany qualified for their only World Cup Finals in 1974, hosted by West Germany. In that tournament, they also beat West Germany in their one and only ever encounter between the two states. The victory put East Germany ahead of West Germany in the group standing.
East Germany won the 1986 European Under-18 Championship beating the talented Yugoslavia in the quarterfinal. At the World Youth Championship in 1987, they narrowly lost to Yugoslavia and finished 3rd. Yugoslavia was known for its Golden team. Matthias Sammer was the star of the team. I believe East Germany might have their Golden era from1996 to 2006. They would probably be a force.
|1976 Olympic Gold Medal|
GK: Jürgen Croy
Croy was probably one of the greatest keepers of his generations. He spent his entire career with BSG Sachsenring Zwickau (today FSV Zwickau). He was one of East Germany's few international players not to play for a top club. Capped 86 caps. He won the Gold medal in 1976 Olympic Games and went to the WC Finals in 1974.
He played during most of his career for the football club Berliner FC Dynamo where he was East German champion ten times in a row from 1979 to 1988. He was the number one keeper for the East German national team for nearly a decade.
GK: René Müller
Müller was first-choice goalkeeper of the East German national team for much of the 1980s, and was twice East German Footballer of the Year. He played for 1. FC Lokomotive Leipzig for fourteen years, and later had spells with FC Sachsen Leipzig, Dynamo Dresden and FC St. Pauli.
RB: Klaus Urbanczyk
Urbanczyk played for Chemie Halle and later Hallescher FC Chemie – in the DDR-Oberliga. He played for East Germany between 1961 and 1969. In 1964, he won a Bronze medal at the Tokyo Olympics for the Unified German team(only East German players were used)
RB: Gerd Kische
Kische played for FC Hansa Rostock from 1970 to 1981. On the national level, he played for the East German national team (59 and 63 matches respectively), and was a participant at the 1974 FIFA World Cup. He won his first cap in 1971 against Mexico.
SW: Matthias Sammer
He was capped by East Germany before the unification. He won the Euro 1996 with Germany and a Champions' League in 1997. He won the Ballon D'Or in 1996 after winning the Euro 1996 with the unified Germany. He won the Champions' League in 1997 with Borussia Dortmund.
Kurbjuweit played for Stahl Riesa (1965–1970) and FC Carl Zeiss Jena (1970–1983). He had 66 caps. He won the Olympic God Medal in 1976. He was a part of the WC team in 1974.
CB: Dirk Stahmann
He played his entire career with FC Magdeburg and widely considered to be their greatest ever player. Between 1985 and 1994, he was the team's captain. He had 46 caps.
SW: Hans-Jurgen Dorner
Dorner joined Dynamo Dresden in 1968 where he won five first division DDR-Oberliga titles and five FDGB-Pokale (East German Cup). He captained Dynamo Dresden from 1977 to his retirement, and is the clubs most decorated captain and he was voted the teams greatest ever player in 1999. He was capped 96 times for East Germany, winning a gold medal as vital part of that country's Olympic team at the 1976 Montreal Olympics.
Weise played his career at senior level for FC Carl Zeiss Jena between 1970 and 1986. He was a member of the 1974 WC team and won a Gold medal in 1976. He had over 80 caps.
SW/LB: Bernd Bransch
Remembered for being the captain of the East German team at the 1974 World Cup Finals. He had 64 caps. He also won the Gold Medal at the 1976 Olympics. He was the East German Footballer of the Year twice. He played his entire career for SC Chemie, except for the 1973/74 season, in which he played for FC Carl Zeiss Jena.
Lauck played for 1. FC Union Berlin between 1968 and 1973. He moved to BFC Dynamo in 1973. He led BFC Dynamo to win three East German championships in a row. He played for East Germany national team 33 times, and was a participant at the 1974 FIFA World Cup.
AM/CM: Dieter Erler
Erler began his footballing career with Chemie Glauchau in 1953. He transferred to Wismut Gera for the 1957 season and then after two seasons moved to SC Wismut Karl-Marx-Stadt in January 1959. In 1963, Erler moved to SC Karl-Marx-Stadt, where he played alongside Eberhard Vogel. In 1966–67 the team was crowned DDR-Oberliga champion. Between 1959 and 1968, he earned 47 caps and scored 12 goals for East Germany. He was voted GDR footballer of the year in 1967.
AM/CM: Dariusz Wosz
Born in Poland, he started his career in East Germany. He started with Chemie Halle in 1984. Wosz was transferred to VfL Bochum in toward the end of the 1991–92 season. As captain, he led Bochum to its biggest success yet: the third round of the 1997–98 UEFA Cup which was lost 4–6 on aggregate to Ajax Amsterdam. He also played for Hertha Berlin. Capped 7 times for East Germany and 17 times for Germany. He went to Euro 2000.
LW: Eberhard Vogel
Vogel was one of the greatest East German footballers. Vogel played for FC Karl-Marx-Stadt (1961–1970) and FC Carl Zeiss Jena (1970–1982). His 440 appearances for both clubs combined was the record for East German top-flight football. For the national team, he played for the East German national team 74 times, and was a participant at the 1974 FIFA World Cup. In 1969, he won the award for the GDR Footballer of the Year.
Nöldner began his senior career in 1959, with Vorwärts Berlin. He was to spend his entire career with the club, even staying when it was moved to Frankfurt/Oder in 1971. During this time he was East German champion five times, and won the Cup in 1970. He also played internationally for East Germany, winning 30 caps and scoring 16 goals, including a first-minute goal against Austria which was the fastest in the national team's history. He was part of the all-East German team that represented Germany at the 1964 Summer Olympics, winning the bronze medal. In 1966 he was voted East German Footballer of the Year, and such was his reputation that he was nicknamed "the Puskás of the DDR".
AM: Thomas Doll
Doll began his career with local side BSG Lokomotiv Malchin, before joining East German first-division DDR-Oberliga side Hansa Rostock. In 1986 he was transferred to Berliner FC Dynamo, where he won two East Germany titles (in 1987 in 1988). After reunification Doll was one of the most sought-after players of coming out of the former East Germany. He played as an attacking midfielder for Hamburger SV, Lazio, Eintracht Frankfurt and Bari. He played for both East Germany and Germany. He went to Euro 1992 for Germany.
FW: Jürgen Sparwasser
Sparwasser started his playing career with BSG Lokomotive Halberstadt in 1956. In 1965 he moved to 1. FC Magdeburg where would play until 1979. He was part of the team that won the UEFA Cup Winners' Cup in 1974. Between 1969 and 1977, Sparwasser played in 49 matches for East Germany, scoring 14 goals. He also made six appearances for East Germany at the 1974 FIFA World Cup finals, where he gained fame for scoring the winning goal in a politically prestigious match against West Germany.
Thom played as a forward for Dynamo Berlin, Bayer Leverkusen, Celtic and Hertha Berlin. He was among the first group of former DDR player to play for Germany. He played 51 times for East Germany throughout the 1980s and played 10 times for the unified German national team in the early 1990s. He went to Euro 1992.
Ducke was born in 1941 in Benesov, which was then a part of Sudetenland. He played most of his career for FC Carl Zeiss Jena (1959–1977). On the national level he played for East Germany national team in 63 matches (15 goals), and was a participant at the 1974 FIFA World Cup.
ST: Hans-Jürgen Kreische
Kreische spent his entire career with his hometown club, Dynamo Dresden, scoring 127 goals in 234 DDR-Oberliga games between 1964 and 1978. He was East Germany's top scorer in 1971, 1972, 1973 and 1976, and was player of the year in 1973. Kreische was an East German international, scoring 25 goals in 50 appearances. He was part of the 1974 World Cup squad, and was also in the 1972 Olympic bronze medal winning team.
ST: Martin Hoffmann
Hoffmann played from 1973 to 1985 for 1. FC Magdeburg in the East German top division. With Magdeburg, he won the European Cup Winners' Cup in 1974. He also played for the East Germany 62 times and scoring 15 goals between 1973 and 1981. In 1974, he played in the 1974 FIFA World Cup. In 1976, he was in the East German team which won the gold medal in the Summer Olympics in Montreal.
ST: Joachim Streich
Joachim played as a striker for Aufbau Wismar from 1957 to 1963, TSG Wismar from 1963 to1967), Hansa Rostock from 1967 to 1975, and 1. FC Magdeburg from 1975 to 1985. Between 1969 and 1984 he was capped 102 times for East Germany, scoring 55 goals. He was their cap record holder and all-time leading scorer.
ST: Ulf Kirsten
Started with Dynamo Dresden. He was one of the first East German footballers to enter the Bundesliga after the German reunification. In the German Bundesliga he played 350 matches for Bayer Leverkusen and scored 182 goals. Kirsten's 100 caps are almost evenly split: 49 for East Germany and 51 for the re-unified Germany. Kirsten played for his country at the 1994 and 1998 World Cups and Euro 2000.
Manfred Kaiser, Günter Schröter, Otto Fräßdorf, Wolfram Löwe, Rainer Ernst, Olaf Marschall
-- Jürgen Croy, Eberhard Vogel and Hans-Jurgen Dorner were highly rated. They probably would have earned caps with West Germany if they were born in the West.
-- Croy was widely considered one of the best in his generation. If he played for an unified Germany, he would be overshadowed by Sepp Maier, who was two years older. Dorner would have been Franz Beckenbauer's successor as Germany's sweeper. He would play a major role at the 1978 WC Finals, the 1980 European Championship and the 1982 World Cup Finals. Vogel was born on the same year as Wolfgang Overath who sometimes occupied Germany's left midfield spot.
-- Only players capped by East Germany are considered. I am including East German players who were also capped by the unified Germany. Dariusz Wosz, Matthias Sammer, Ulf Kirsten, Andreas Thom and Thomas Doll were capped by both East Germany and the unified Germany.
-- East Germany might enter a golden age and qualify for a few major tournaments in the 1990's. They almost qualified for Italia 1990 with Matthias Sammer, Ulf Kirsten and Andreas Thom. They only needed a draw against Austria on the last match of the World Cup Qualifiers. The trio later contributed a lot to the German national team after the reunification in 1990. Thomas Doll also played that match as a sub. He would become an important player at Euro 1992 for Germany. Dariusz Wosz and Olaf Marschall had been capped by DDR. These players could become the greatest generation of East German stars.
-- Robert Enke, Carsten Jancker, Jörg Heinrich, Thomas Linke, Bernd Schneider and Michael Ballack emerged in the late 1990's. They never played for DDR, but were groomed by East German clubs. They were ineligible for this blog team as they never played for East German. See East German Players after 1990 here.
-- I do not know if Lutz Eigendorf and Falko Götz were good enough to be considered greatest ever from East Germany.
-- Thomas Doll was selected for his performance with Germany.
I moved Sammer to the midfield, where he also played in his career. Thomas Doll played great for two seasons before an injury limited his career. He deserved his start.