Munich - Borussia Dortmund's Signal-Iduna-Park may be the largest stadium in Germany and Bayern Munich's Allianz Arena the most innovative, but you have to look outside the Bundesliga boundaries for the most unique.

In no other domestic league would you find a footballing palace away from the top flight as grand as Germany's Olympiastadion, a 74,064 all-seater stadium and venue for Monday night's much-anticipated clash between hosts Hertha BSC Berlin and city neighbours 1. FC Union Berlin (kick-off 20:15 CET).

Promotion candidates


The visitors hailing from the east of the historic city have all too often lived in the shadow of their more illustrious neighbours to the west, but with 13 games left on the league fixture calendar, both clubs are very much in the promotion mix at the top of the table.

Hertha can top the pile with victory in the derby and in the process move ten points clear of third-placed 1. FC Kaiserslautern in the promotion play-off place. Fifth-placed Union, meanwhile, will be hoping for a repeat of their infamous win on Hertha soil two years ago as they look to close the gap on Energie Cottbus in fourth to just four points.

Spectacle guaranteed


The stage is set, then, and the venue befitting of an occasion in which local bragging rights mean everything. As if you needed any more convincing, 55,000 tickets flew off the shelves within days of their release - over three months before the game's scheduled kick-off.

Clearly, this is no ordinary derby. The fact it will be played behind such magnificent and historic walls in front of such a mammoth number of promotion-craving fans all makes for a truly thrilling spectacle that football fans simply won't find anywhere else.

Christopher Mayer-Lodge