Founded: Aug 1, 1916
Club Members: 950
Coach: Jens Keller
Captain: Dennis Diekmeier
3.Liga Champions: 1
German Amateur Champions: 2
Landespokal Baden Winner: 11
More famous for romantic castles, half-timbered wine taverns and the Hockenheim F1 circuit; the region of Baden-Württemberg is also home to SV Sandhausen who, despite having a dwarfish budget, spent over a decade punching above their weight in Bundesliga.2.
Formed as Sportverein Sandhausen 1916 e.V., the inclusion of this year in their name is actually a bit of a misnomer. Yes, football had been played in Sandhausen well before World War 2 - but only as part of a much wider sports association that formed after the merger of several other clubs in the area. For much of it's history though, SV Sandhausen kicked about in the lower leagues with their only notable achievements being a few Oberliga titles and the German Amatuer Championship in 1993. Expectations for future success must have been low because in 2005 the club entered negotiations to pool resources with TSG 1899 Hoffenheim and FC Astoria Waldorf to form a new club called FC Heidelberg 06 before the idea was ultimately kicked into touch.
In hindsight, this proved to be a great decision because the following season Sandhausen enjoyed a sufficiently strong season to qualify for the new 3.Liga.
They then went onto earn promotion to Bundesliga.2 in 2012 and although they finished in the relegation places, they earned a reprieve when MSV Duisburg were refused a playing licence and were relegated instead. For the next 10 years, Sandhausen went on to establish themselves as a pretty consistent Bundesliga.2 performer before performances eventually tailed off and the club dropped into the 3.Liga at the end of the 2022-23 season.
Ground Name: BWT Stadion am Hardtwald
Year Opened: 1951
Renovations: 1987, 2002, 2007, 2012
Capacity: 15,414 (8,740 standing)
Executive Boxes: 11
Undersoil Heating: Yes
Running Track: No
Playing Surface: Natural Grass
Hardwaldstadion (1951 - 2017)
BWT Stadion am Hardtwald (2017 - ) *
* Stadium Renamed
Reflecting the rapid recent rise of SV Sandhausen, the BWT Stadion an Hardtwald is a patchwork of a stadium, as bits and pieces have been bolted on at various stages in order to comply with the ground regulations of different leagues.
At one end of the ground, there's a fully covered terrace (Sparkassen Tribüne - Block D) where the loudest Sandhausen support gather and at the opposite end, there's an all seater stand with SVS spelt out in white amongst the otherwise black seating. The previous main stand (INWO Tribüne) has had two additional larger stands built either side of it, one with terracing and the other offering seats and executive areas. The latest addition to the ground was the new main stand on the opposite side of the pitch which was built in 2014 and offers a mix of seating and terracing.
Sandhausen's home support are found in Blocks A, C and D with visiting fans welcomed into Blocks B1, B2 and B3 of the INWO grandstand.
2022-2023: 6,100 (Bundesliga.2)
2021-2022: 4,855 (Bundesliga.2) *
2020-2021: N/A *
2019-2020: 5,702 (Bundesliga.2) *
2018-2019: 6,939 (Bundesliga.2)
* Season affected by COVID pandemic
Expected Ticket Availability
Despite having one of the smallest grounds in Bundesliga.2, Sandhausen very rarely sell-out their matches and getting hold of a ticket generally shouldn't be a problem.
The club's online ticket shop offers German and no less than two English language options ('The Queens' obviously and 'American English') so getting tickets (Post or E-Ticket) is nice and straightforward. Tickets can also be bought from fan shop or the box office which opens up 90 minutes before kick-off.
Roughly speaking, for adults, expect to pay €17 - €28 for seats; and €11 for a place on the terraces if you want to risk getting wet or €13 if you prefer to be under cover. Discounts are available for club members, senior citizens, people with disabilities, students, adolescents etc; and fans under the age of 6 can watch the match with a free 'Lap Ticket' - although this doesn't entitle them to a seat of their own and, as the name suggests, they must instead sit on a parent's knee.
GETTING THERE & AWAY
Coming by car along the A5 autobahn, take the Walldorf/Wiesloch exit and follow signs for Walldorf/Heidelberg/Sandhausen onto the B291. Take the Sandhausen-Süd exit and follow the signs to the Sandhäuser Höfe car park. Note that road closures are in place around the stadium four to five hours (!) before a match and stay in place until two hours after the full-time whistle has been blown.
If you're combining a trip to the beautiful city of Heidelberg with the football, then take the S3 or S4 from Heidelberg station to St Ilgen-Sandhausen. From there, the club run free shuttle buses direct to the stadium on matchdays starting two hours before kick-off.
Buses 720 and 721 (Direction: Wiesloch-Walldorf, Bf) also pull up right in front of the stadium at the Sportzentrum stop.
Your match ticket includes the cost of public transport to and from the stadium within the Rhein-Neckar Transport Association (VRN) network until 3am the following day.
From the St Ilgen-Sandhausen station it's only a mile and a half to the stadium so it's an easy half-hour walk. Come out of the station and turn right onto Leimbachstraße. Follow it as it bends round to the left and becomes Bahnhofstraße then follow this for half-a-mile until you reach the junction with Hauptstraße. Turn left onto Hauptstraße and carry straight down this road until the ground appears on your right after three-quarters-of-a-mile
FAN SHOP, MUSEUM & STADIUM TOURS
The main fan shop for all your Sandhausen fanartikels and tickets can be found at the ground itself. (Jahnstraße 1, 69207 Sandhausen; 10am-12:30pm, 1:30pm-5pm, Tue, Wed & Fri; 10am-12:30pm, 1:30pm-6pm, Thu).
FOOD & DRINK OPTIONS
There is very little in the way of food and drink other than at the match-day concession stands hawking the usual chips, frikedellen and sausage variants. The bars and restaurants in the centre of Sandhausen, or even Heidelburg, might therefore be a better pre-match option.
Unfortunately, a pre-paid card system is in operation in the stadium and so if you want to watch the match with a few pints of Schmucker (honestly - it's the official stadium beer) you'll have to pay a €10 card deposit for the privilege of then topping it up with plastic money. You can only pay cash outside the ground and at the kiosk behind entrance B in the main stand. The away fans are spared the hassle as the kiosks in the gästeblock are cash-only.
OTHER CLUBS IN THE AREA
BUNDESLIGA: 1.FSV Mainz 05, Eintracht Frankfurt, SV Darmstadt 98, TSG 1899 Hoffenheim
BUNDESLIGA 2: 1.FC Kaiserslautern, Karlsruher SC, SV Elversberg, SV Wehen Wiesbaden
3.LIGA: 1. FC Saarbrücken, SSV Ulm, SV Waldorf Mannheim