19th “day of commemoration in German football”: Taking a stand, taking action

Foto: DFL/Getty Images/Sebastian Widmann

24 January 2023 – ”Taking a stand, taking action” („Haltung zeigen und handeln“) – under this slogan, the “!Never Again” (“!Nie Wieder”) initiative is commemorating the victims of National Socialism on and around 27 January, the date of liberation of the Auschwitz concentration camp. This is the 19th year in which the DFL and clubs from the Bundesliga and Bundesliga 2 have been involved in the “day of commemoration in German football”.

“War – never again! Auschwitz – never again!” Ever since 2004, these warnings from concentration-camp survivors have prompted the “!Never Again” initiative to commemorate the victims of National Socialism and tackle anti-Semitism and all forms of discrimination.

The joint goal of all participants in the “day of commemoration in German football” is to contribute to a living culture of remembrance and a respectful, discrimination-free society. The DFL and the clubs in the Bundesliga and Bundesliga 2 are again supporting the “!Never Again” alliance in this project. Actions are planned in stadiums, at events and online on and around Matchdays 18 and 19 (27–29 January and 2–4 February 2023).

On this year’s day of commemoration, the “!Never Again” initiative will particularly focus on the women who were persecuted and murdered because of their resistance to National Socialism. The aim is to remember the women who put themselves in danger, for instance through their courageous commitment to persecuted people, as many of their stories have been forgotten.

About the “day of commemoration in German football”

On 27 January 2004, 40 churchgoers signed a letter to the DFL and the DFB at the Church of Reconciliation on the site of the concentration camp memorial at Dachau. This included a suggestion that the two organisations come together with those behind the idea to create a “day of commemoration in German football”, to be observed for first time on the matchday closest to 27 January 2005, 60 years after the liberation of Auschwitz. 

The “!Never Again” network now comprises a host of individuals, fan groups and fan projects, clubs, associations and institutions from the world of football in particular. Professional football will be taking part once again this year with a wide range of activities on the 78th anniversary of the liberation of the survivors at the Auschwitz concentration camp.

You can also find further information on the “!Never Again” initiative at niewieder.info (in German only).