Gelsenkirchen sports offer all the typical activities that you might expect from a German city. There’s the eternal favorite of soccer with its fan-favorite team, the FC Schalke 04. And you’ll also find ice hockey games, basketball and swimming.
Football / Soccer
Gelsenkirchen’s premier soccer club is FC Schalke 04, one of Germany’s most popular teams.
The FC Schalke has struggled throughout the years, with just a few major victories to satisfy their loyal fan base. The club’s popularity has almost literally reached the heavens. In 1987, Pope John Paul II was made an honorary member of the team after he gave a mass at their former home, the Parkstadion.
The FC Schalke plays their matches these days at the Veltins-Arena (Ernst-Kuzorra-Weg 1), which was one the venues of the 2006 World Cup. The arena has a capacity of about 60,000 and is generally regarded as one of the most technologically-advanced stadiums in the world. It has such features as a retractable roof and a slide-out pitch. Its success has been an inspiration in other countries as well, most notably at the University of Phoenix Stadium in Arizona.
This Gelsenkirchen sport is another popular pastime. The ESV Schalke Sharks was ice hockey’s most successful team, playing in the 1980s. These days, the current team is called EHC Gelsenkirchen and they play in the fourth-tier Regionalliga West.
Emscher-Lippe-Halle (Adenauerallee 118) is the preferred venue for ice hockey matches. This sports arena has a 30×60 meter rink can be used by the local public as well. There are ice skates available for rental, as well as lessons.
While football and ice hockey are typically popular Gelsenkirchen sports, let’s not overlook basketball. There are at least four local clubs that play regular games in the city. The more well-known teams include CBG, Hassel, Bulmke-Hüllen and Schalke 04 Basketball.
With several indoor pools at Jahn Stadium and the Central Baths, it’s always time for a swim in Gelsenkirchen, summer or winter, rain or shine.