As their name suggests, Hannover 96 were founded in 1896 making them one of Germany's oldest clubs. The club stayed in the lower tiers of German football in its early years. This is mostly because they kept being defeated by Eintracht Braunschweig to be kept down, which would be the start of the rivalry between the two clubs. Hannover didn't really come to prominence until the 30s under the Third Reich. It was then that they managed to pull of one of the greatest upsets in German football history by beating Schalke 04, who then were the poster boys of the Nazi Regime, over two legs by a score of 7-6.
After the War, they were dissolved as most teams were, and came back a few years later as a lower tier club. They won their second and most recent national championship in 1954 against FCK. At the start of the Bundesliga era they were not in the top league, but were one of the first teams promoted for the next year and set the league's attendance record.
The team bounced around the leagues for the next few decades, mostly staying in the second league. They started to go broke in the late 80s and just when things were starting to look dire for the club, they became the first lower division team to win the Pokal beating BVB along the way. But just a few years later, they were sent down to the third division, a low point for the team. They managed to, again, get their finances in order and rose back up through the ranks over the course of a few years, winning the Bundesliga 2 in 2002. They've been in the Bundesliga ever since.
Their badge may be green but Hannover are known as Die Roten, The Reds. The Reds almost always have red as their home kit, with usually white or green as their secondary; But you can bet the fans will always be draped in red when you take a visit to the HDI-Arena.
The Fans have a great hatred for their rivals Eintracht Braunschweig even though the teams rarely play anymore. Also, the team has grown its rivalry with Wolfsburg over the years as the teams are in the same region. They also have a club friendship with Hamburger SV, this because both teams share the nickname HSV. The fans are known to shout H-S-V at each other when the sides play, creating a pretty insane atmosphere.
Like the rest of the Bundesliga the fans of Hannover 96 are a pretty crazy bunch that never stop. Just look at the video below to confirm that.
A special moment in the club's recent history, that shows just how great these fans are, was the suicide of the clubs goalkeeper Robbie Encke. A rough time for the club, the outpouring of support from the fans for his family and team as a whole was a reminder about how much football means to the people of this city.
- Hannover is known to have the second largest Oktoberfest celebration in the world
- Hannover 96 started primarily as a rugby club
- Their biggest home win is over Borussia......Hannover 8-1
- The highest fee they ever paid (that they've published) was 5 Million Euros for Mike Hanke, a player allergic to grass