Wednesday, November 2, 2016

FC Koln Greatest All-Time Team

Koln won the Double in the 1977-1978 season

Please also see my All-Time World Cup Team Index.

FC Koln was formed in 1948 as a merger of the clubs Kölner Ballspiel-Club 1901 and SpVgg Sülz 07.  Like many of Germany's other professional football clubs, 1. FC Köln is part of a larger sports club with teams in other sports like handball, table tennis and gymnastics. 1. FC Köln had around 78.500 members as of May 2016, making it the fourth largest club in Germany

This is my selection of a 25 member all-time team for the club.  The number 25 was chosen because it is the official squad size for the Champions' League.

GK: Toni Schumacher (Germany)
He was the keeper for the German national team throughout the 1980's, winning the European Championship in 1980.  He led West Germany to the Final at both Spain 1982 and Mexico 1982.  He was remembered for an iugly incident against Patrick Battiston during the semifinal of Spain 1982.  His club career was associated with Koln. 
Toni Schumacher

GK: Bodo Illgner (Germany)
Aligner played for Köln and Real Madrid, winning the Champions league in 1998 with Real Madrid.  Capped 54 times.  He helped West Germany to the 1990 World Cup, where he became the first goalkeeper to keep a clean sheet in a World Cup final.

GK: Manfred Manglitz (Germany)
 He was a member of the West Germany squad at 1970 FIFA World Cup, playing four times for his country from 1965 to 1970.  His career, however, was remembered for a match fixing scandal.

RB: Harald Konopka (Germany)
He won three German Cup's with 1. FC Köln and was runner-up with them in two other editions.  Konopka was part of the famous FC Köln squad that won the Bundesliga and the Cup in the same season (double) in 1978. He also played a season for Borussia Dortmund for the remainder of his career. Capped twice.

ST/RB: Karl-Heinz Thielen (Germany)
He played for his entire career for Koln from 1959 to 1973.  Capped twice.

CB: Jurgen Kohler (Germany)
Kohler was regarded one of the best defenders in the 1990's.    He won the WC in 1990 and the European Championship in 1996.  He played with Koln, Bayern Munich, Juventus and Borussia Dortmund.  He won the Champions' League in 1997 with Borussia Dortmund.  
Jurgen Kohler
CB: Gerhard Strack (Germany)
He earned 10 caps and scored one goal for West Germany from 1982 to 1983, and was included in the West German team for the 1984 UEFA European Football Championship, but did not play. The one goal he scored, against Albania in a European Championship qualifier in 1983, was vital: it ensured that West  qualified for Euro 84 ahead of Northern Ireland.

CB: Paul Steiner (Germany)
Steiner appeared in 349 games in the Bundesliga, scoring 27 times from 1979 until 1991 with MSV Duisburg and 1. FC Köln. With the latter side, he was instrumental in five league finishes in the top three, also winning the German Cup in 1983 and losing the 1985–86 UEFA Cup to Real Madrid.  Capped once in 1990.

CB: Wolfgang Weber (Germany)
Weber played for Köln between 1963 and 1978.  Capped 53 times.  He was best remembered for scoring the equaliser at the Final of the World Cup in 1966 against England.  He also played at the European Champions in 1968 and the WC Finals in 1970.

CB/LB: Karl-Heinz Schnellinger
In his prime, he was considered one of the best leftbacks in the world.  He participated in 4 World Cup Finals, unfortunaitely sandwiched between West Germany's two WC winning tournaments.  He was remembered one of the first German to star in Italy.  He had a remarkable stint with AC Milan and As Roma.  He won the European Cup in 1969.
Karl-Heinz Schnellinger
CB/LB: Herbert Zimmermann (Germany)
He started as a striker for Bayern Munich.  He never found much playing time, but was a part of the squad of FC Bayern Munich that won the Bundesliga in 1973 and 1974, and the European Cup in 1974.  He joined Koln in 1974 and converted into a successful defender.  Capped 14 times. He was a part of the team that won the European Championship in 1980.  He also went to the WC in 1978.

LB: Henrik Andersen (Denmark)
Andersen played eight years at Belgian club RSC Anderlecht, with whom he won the 1983 UEFA Cup. He joined Koln in 1990.  He represented Denmark in 30 matches, and scored two goals. He represented Denmark at the 1986 World Cup and the triumphant Euro 1992 tournament, where he suffered a serious knee injury, during the semi-final.

DM/SW: Bernhard Cullmann (Germany)
He began his footballing career in 1969 with SpVgg Porz, until he was signed by 1. FC Köln in 1970. He played 341 matches in the Bundesliga for them before his retirement in 1984. He played 40 matches for the German team between 1973 and 1980, scoring six goals.[4] He participated at the 1974 FIFA World Cup, the 1978 FIFA World Cup, and the victorious UEFA Euro 1980.

CM: Bernd Schuster (Germany)
Schuster was the star of the Euro 1980 winning team, but disagreed with the German Football Association and seldom played for West Germany after the tournament.  He was a star at La Liga in the 1980's, playing for Barcelona, Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid. He was the first player to have won the Spanish Cup for the big three. He later played for Bayer Leverkusen.
Bernd Schuster

LM/CM: Wolfgang Overath (Germany)
Overath was one of the best left midfielders in history,  He won the 1974  WC, where he kept Netzer from the starting lineup. In total he won 81 caps for the national side between 1963 and 1974, scoring 17 goals.  In addition to 1974 World Cup Finals, he also went to the 1966 and 1970 World Cup Finals. He spent all of his career with Koln.
Wolfgang Overath
RW/AM: Pierre Littbarski   (Germany)
Littibarski was a major star in the 1980's.  He had over 70 caps and played in three WC Finals with Germany reaching the Final all 3 times, winning his final World Cup in 1990. He spent most of his career with Koln. Littbarski spent most of his playing career at 1. FC Köln, winning the DFB-Pokal once, in 1983, and was three times runner up in the Bundesliga (1982, 1989 and 1990).  He also played in France and Japan.
Pierre Littibarki
LW:  Hans Schafer  (Germany)
Schafer was the left wing on West Germany's 1954 WC winning team. He scored 4 goals in the tournament. In addition of the 1954 World Cup Finals, he also played in 1958 and 1962. He was German Player of the Year in 1963. He spent all of his career with Koln.
Hans Schafer

AM: Heinz Frohe (Germany)
He played for 1. FC Köln (1966–1979), winning the Bundesliga title in 1978, and the DFB-Pokal in 1968, 1977 and 1978. He also played for TSV 1860 München (1979–1980). Earned 39 caps and scored 8 goals for Die Mannschaft (West Germany). He was in the winning squad for the 1974 FIFA World Cup. He also played in the 1976 European Football Championship and the 1978 FIFA World Cup.

AM: Josef Rohrig (Germany)
He played at 1. FC Köln for ten years, and was part of the team which reached the final of the DFB-Pokal and the German football championship. He also made sporadic appearances for the West Germany national football team between 1950 and 1956, playing 12 times and scoring two goals.

AM: Thomas Hassler (Germany)
Hassler was a star player in the 1990's.  He played for Koln, Juventus, Roma, Karlsruher, 1860 Munich and SV Salzburg. 
He appeared over 100 times for the German natinal team. He was a member of the teams which won the 1990 FIFA World Cup (as West Germany) and UEFA Euro 1996. He also appeared at the 1994 and 1998 FIFA World Cups, the 1992 and 2000 UEFA European Championships, and the 1988 Olympic Games.

FW: Klaus Allofs (Germany)
He made his name with Fortuna Düsseldorf, where he was the Bundesliga top-scorer in 1978-1979, winning two German Cup with them.  He later joined Koln, Olympique de Marseille, Bordeaux and Werder Bremen.  He was the top scorer at Euro 1980, where West Germany was the champion.  He played at Euro 1984 and Mexico 1986.
Klaus Allofs

FW: Lukas Podolski (Germany)
He made 81 appearances for Koln before moving to Bayern Munich. With Bayern, Podolski won the Bundesliga and DFB-Pokal double in 2008. Podolski returned to 1. FC Köln in 2009. He later played for Arsenal, Inter Milan and Galatasaray. He was Capped over 120 times.  He is a regular member of the national team from 2003 to 2016.  He was a part of the team that won the WC in 2014.
Lukas Podolski

ST: Heinz Hornig (Germany)
Hornig was capped by West Germany on seven occasions, making his debut in 1965 and his final appearances the following year. He was a member of the German squad at the 1966 FIFA World Cup, although he did not play a game in the tournament. He played his club football for 1. FC Köln between 1962 and 1970, and he appeared for them in the 1962–63 European Cup against Dundee.

ST: Hannes Löhr (Germany)
The striker scored 166 top division goals for 1. FC Köln and is the all-time lead score for the club.  Löhr won 20 caps for West Germany and appeared at the 1970 FIFA World Cup in Mexico

ST: Dieter Muller (Germany)
Muller played for Koln, Stuttgart, Bordeaux, Grasshopper Club Zurich, FC Saarbrucken and Kickers Offenbach.  He set a record for the most goals scored by a player in a single Bundesliga match. On 17 August 1977, he scored six goals  to Köln's 7–2 victory over Werder Bremen, but since the cameramen were on strike on this day, there are no TV-recordings of Müller's goals. He was crowned Bundesliga topscorer that season (24 goals in 33 games), just like the season before (34 goals in 34 appearances). He was capped 12 times, scoring 9 times for West Germany.  He was best remembered for his heroic performance at Euro 1976, where he scored a hat trick against Yugoslavia and a goal against Czechoslovakia. 

Dieter Muller

Honorable Mention
Jonas Hector, Armin Görtz, Dieter Prestin, Thomas Allofs, Heinz Simmet, Fritz Pott, Hansi Sturm, Roger van Gool, Morten Olsen.

Squad Explanation
-- Jonas Hector is too young to be considered.

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