On the 12th of November during 1893 an advert appeared in the then ‘Nationalzeitung‘ (current day Basler Zeitung) newspaper requesting that a football team be formed. Anyone who wished to join was asked to meet up the following Wednesday at the Schuhmacher-Zunft.
On 15 November 1893, a group of academics including Emil Abderhalden, Max Born, Josy Ebinger, Max Geldner, Wilhelm Glaser, Jean Grieder, Ferdinand Isler, Wilhelm Oser, Lucien Schmoll, Richard Strub and John Tollmann met on the first floor of the Shoemaker’s guild and founded a football club called FC Basel.
The first game of the new club was played on the site of the Landhof Stadium. The first official match dated from 10th December 1893 when FCB won against Realschülerturnverein (High School Gymnastics Club) Basel by 2:0. The club colours from the first day onward were red and blue.
FC Basel’s traditional kit is a mix of red (representing love) and blue (that of eternal loyalty) and lends itself to the nickname RotBlau and the colours of FC Barcelona. It is known that Joan Gamper, one of the early founders of FC Basel in Spain, was a club captain at FC Basel hence those colours of the Catalonian club.
The current era is the greatest the club has experienced since its foundation with the club now being a firm participant in the UEFA Champions League. The appointment of Christian Gross back in the 1990’s went hand in hand with new financial backing for the club and the redevelopment of the home St Jakob Stadium. All of these were factors that helped push FC Basel back to the top of Swiss football and drive interest in the club by a new wave of supporters.
In 2002, FC Basel won the domestic double (Swiss Championship and Swiss Cup) and reached the final of the Intertoto Cup against Aston Villa. In the following season, they were one of the first Swiss teams to ever play in the Champions League following qualification success against Celtic.
Today huge rivalries exist with Young Boys Berne and both Zürich clubs such has been the surge of interest in Swiss football. FC Basel is by far Switzerland’s most successful club and its best supported. The continued success of the Swiss national team comes thanks in part to the role of FC Basel players.
The once powerful Servette Geneva club are now a shadow of the former club that was a championship winner during the 1980’s.
The home St Jakob ground of FC Basel has 38’512 seats and was a venue for Euro 2008. A UEFA Four-star stadium, the venue most recently hosted the 2016 Europa League Final. Centrally located the stadium hosts restaurants, offices and a nearby shopping centre while its surrounds have a host of fan murals dedicated to the club.