Reuters, Friday, March 27, 2009 3:30 PM
Having not won a Bundesliga title since all the way back in 1931, and with a history that includes unfortunate ties to the Nazi party, the timing couldn't be better for Hertha Berlin to win the
title in the same year that the capital city will celebrate the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall.
Once the soccer powerhouse of Germany in the late 1920s and early
1930s, Hertha appeared in six straight league finals and won back-to-back Bundesliga trophies in 1930 and 1931 before enduring "a downward spiral as the Nazis, the war and allied powers
determined the fate of the country and the city," according to Reuters' Karalos Grohmann, who tells the story of the team's tumultuous history since.
Although Hertha historian
notes that the team has lost two generations of fans, "the first when the Wall was erected, trapping half of their fan base on the other side" and another "when they
played for so long in the lower divisions," Hertha now leads the top-flight league with nine games to play and the city seems poised to party, with "the fans' 'Ha-Ho-He-Hertha BSC' trademark
chant resonating across the unified capital for the first time in almost 80 years."
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