Open main menu

Neverkusen and its German equivalent Vizekusen (second-kusen) are nicknames for German association football team Bayer 04 Leverkusen.[1][2]

Both apply to the runners-up image of the team, which led by Michael Ballack from 2000–2002 often found its way into finals but never to the top.[3]

Bayer, the company owning the team has issued a trademark on Vizekusen and others which the German Financial Times has claimed as proof of a Bayer marketing strategy to use the ironic elements.[4]

The expressions have had various echoes in the press. In case of Bayern Munich's 2012 three final losses in the Champions League, Bundesliga and DFB-Pokal the press used expressions like "Vizekusen-Syndrome", "Vizekusen 2.0.",[5][6] or Vizekusen-stigmata and a fear of having them stuck.[7]

Some concerns about a Vizekusen curse were raised before the 2002 World Cup and Euro 2012 as an important number of players in the national team came from Leverkusen or Bayern respectively.[8]


  1. ^ Soccer and Philosophy: Beautiful Thoughts on the Beautiful Game Ted Richards Open Court Publishing, 08.06.2010
  2. ^ Soccer Stories: Anecdotes, Oddities, Lore, and Amazing Feats Donn Risolo, University of Nebraska Press, 01.11.2010
  3. ^ DFB-Wochenschau: Geburtsstunde von "Vizekusen" Birth of Vizekusen according to the DFB
  4. ^ Markenrecht Bayer Leverkusen schützt "Vizekusen" Archived 2010-04-15 at the Wayback Machine FTD 12 April 2010.
  5. ^ Die Welt vom 20.05.12: Alptraum dahoam - Vize-Bayern in Schockstarre, viewed 22 May 2012.
  6. ^ Die Welt, 2012 Vizekusen 2.0, viewed 22 May 2012.
  7. ^ Bayern München Sag mir, wo die Champions sind Cord Sauer, Stern 22 May 2012.
  8. ^ Fußball – Zurück und nach vorne – Champions League und EM 2012, Der Wahlberliner, Das Netzmagazin von Alexander Platz