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Move To Name SV Hamburg Stadium After Seeler Excites Beckenbauer


(AFRICAN EXAMINER) – German former professional footballer and manager, Franz Anton Beckenbauer has expressed his support for the clarion call to name Hamburg Stadium after his team mate and friend Uwe Seeler.

Seeler, who led West Germany to the 1966 World Cup final as captain of the national team died on Thursday at the age of 85.

Regarded as one of Germany’s best-ever players, he was famous for his overhead kicks and ability to score goals from the unlikeliest of angles. He was also known for his humility and fairness, and respected for his never wavering loyalty to hometown club Hamburger SV.

Beckenbauer and Seeler played together at the 1966 and 1970 World Cups and both scored in the famous 1970 quarter-final against England where West Germany rallied from two goals down to win 3-2. Both of them are honorary captains of the German national team

Describing Seeler as “my oldest friend and my best one”, the ex-international who in his playing career was nicknamed Der Kaiser because of his elegant style, dominance and leadership on the field, applauded the call to immortalize his colleague.

“He always supported me when I came to the national team at young age. Just like he helped everyone in his entire life. There is no other such great person like Uwe”, the 76-year-old legendary soccer star told the Bild paper.

Meanwhile, the city of Hamburg has ordered flags at half-mast and laid out a book of condolences at town hall for its honorary citizen while also in talks with Seeler’s family about funeral arrangements which may include an event at town hall square.

SV Hamburg meanwhile asked for time before deciding how to commemorate their icon in the best way.

SV Hamburg investor Klaus-Michael Kühne and former team captaiun Felix Magath said that the club should rename its stadium after their most famous player.
Kühne holds the name rights and has given the stadium its old name Volksparkstadion. “If you want to rename the Volksparkstadion to Uwe-Seeler-Stadion I am in full support, even if the traditional name would then no longer exist”, he added.

As a Hamburg idol and monument, according to him Uwe Seeler fully deserves the naming of the HSV stadium after him.



Similarly, Magath said: “I expect the stadium to be renamed. Anything else would be completely wrong. Uwe Seeler belongs to this city, to this club and to German football”.

Seeler spent his entire playing career 1953-1972 at the club, scoring 507 goals in 587 games for them and famously snubbing a rich Inter Milan offer in 1961 to continue playing in his home town.

He won the national title with them in 1960 and was top scorer in the inaugural Bundesliga season 1963-64, and also club president 1995-1998.

He never won an international title, losing the 1966 World Cup final to England and the 1968 Cup Winners’ Cup final to AC Milan.

But, having scored 43 goals in 72 caps being one of only four players to score at four World Cups (joining Pele, Cristiano Ronaldo and Miroslav Klose), he is also regarded as one of the best strikers in the world in his era.

Hamburg vice-president Bernd Wehmeyer, academy chief Horst Hrubesch, first team coach Tim Walter and captain Sebastian Schonlau gathered at a sculpture of Seeler’s foot outside the stadium on Friday to lay flowers and a team scarf.

“To say something about Uwe is quite simple: He is not only a piece of HSV, but also a piece of Hamburg and Germany. When you see how great the sympathy is, even internationally, then that says it all”, said Hrubesch who was also a famous Hamburg and Germany striker.

SV Hamburg said they won’t rush to a decision on how to honour their most famous son, including the stadium name issue, as they are first looking for arrangements áround their next second tier game against Rostock on Sunday, with a minute silence already announced.

“The entire club is preparing and planning for the game on Sunday, when Uwe Seeler is to be honoured in a dignified setting. We ask for your understanding that we will take time for further possible considerations to commemorate Uwe Seeler”, the club pleaded.


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