1.01.2022Bayer 04

From the archives: Defeat in big match

After the Second World War, the Rhine District Leagues One and Two underpinned the top-flight in western Germany, the First Oberliga West. There was a top match in Group 1 on 23 January 1949: The league leaders Bayer 04 are away to Preußen Dellbrück.

In front of a full house, the match develops into a battle with Preußen taking a 2-0 lead into half-time. In the second half, the Werkself push the opponents back into their own half. Centre forward Helmut Lasser and midfield maestro Richard Job deservedly level with goals on 52 and 68 minutes. Less than seven minutes after the equaliser at 2-2, a Dellbrück defender saves the ball on the line with his hand. Richard Job puts the penalty wide of the target. A real blow seven minutes later: Preußen centre forward Schmidt scores his third goal to keep the title race alive.

Despite this 3-2 defeat, Bayer 04 end the season as champions of the Rhine District League 1 but lose out in the play-off for promotion to the First Oberliga West over two legs against FC Köln. Leverkusen are members of the newly established Second Oberliga West from the 1949/50 season




The images clearly show how important football was to people over 70 years ago. The crowds are on the edge of the pitch and with the missed penalty you can see spectators standing on the pitch next the goal, one with a camera in his hand. You can almost feel the passionate atmosphere at the Preußen stadium…


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