Jürgen Klinsmann is one of the most famous players in VfB Stuttgart's history - finishing as the Bundelsiga's top goalscorer in the 1987/88 season. - © imago/Pressefoto Baumann
Jürgen Klinsmann is one of the most famous players in VfB Stuttgart's history - finishing as the Bundelsiga's top goalscorer in the 1987/88 season. - © imago/Pressefoto Baumann
60 years of Bundesliga

Bundesliga club-by-club historical guide: VfB Stuttgart


A total of 57 clubs have had the honour of competing in the Bundesliga over its 60-year history – three-time champions VfB Stuttgart have been one of the most regular features.

bundesliga.com is taking you through all the teams to have graced Germany’s first division over the last 60 years – based on the number of seasons they've played up to and including 2023/24.

VfB Stuttgart
Years in Bundesliga: 
57 (1963-75, 1977-2016, 2017-19, 2020-present)
Most appearances: Karl Allgöwer (338)
Most goals:
Karl Allgöwer (129)
Youngest player:
Timo Werner (17 years, five months, 11 days)

A future World Cup winner with Germany, Sami Khedira scored the winning goal against Energie Cottbus as VfB Stuttgart sealed the Bundelsiga title in May 2007. - Pressefoto Rudel/Robin Rudel via www.imago-images.de/imago images/Sportfoto Rudel

Stuttgart were big hitters, particularly in southern Germany, in the pre-Bundesliga era. They enjoyed a golden spell in the 1950s with two national championships and two DFB Cups. They were also founding members in 1963 and have played exactly the same number of Bundesliga games as Borussia Dortmund. A two-year stint in the second division in the 1970s forced the team to rebuild, and they returned to establish themselves at the upper end of the Bundesliga standings, culminating in their first Bundesliga title in 1983/84. They took the prize again in 1992 and 2007, before experiencing the lows of relegation in 2016 and 2019.

Befitting the city that is just as famous as the purported home of the automobile and the current homes of Mercedes-Benz and Porsche, Stuttgart's esteemed youth academy has produced some of modern German football’s biggest names, like Sami Khedira, Timo Werner, Serge Gnabry and Joshua Kimmich. Another homegrown player, goalkeeper Timo Hildebrand, still holds the Bundesliga record for longest run without conceding a goal, going 884 minutes unbeaten for the club in 2003. The academy still uses a concept developed in the 1990s by Ralf Rangnick to help promote and improve young players and prepare them physically and mentally for the professional game.

Watch: Thirteen of Timo Werner's first 100 Bundesliga goals were for Stuttgart

VfB – which is an abbreviation of Verein für Bewegungsspiele (literally, club for movement games) – are also best recognised for their white shirts with a red hoop. The original kit was white with a black star and black shorts, inherited from a predecessor club’s rugby team in the 1890s. The famous hoop (Brustring) first appeared in 1925 on the suggestion of a youth player and has featured in every home design since, apart from the 1975/76 jersey when they were in the second division.

Former Germany and USA national team coach Jürgen Klinsmann first made a name for himself at Stuttgart, winning the Bundesliga top scorer crown in 1987/88. The first head coaching role Joachim Löw had was with VfB from 1996 to 1998, leading them to DFB Cup glory and the final of the European Cup Winners’ Cup. Perhaps the best-loved trio in the club’s history was the Magisches Dreieck (magic triangle) of Giovane Elber, Fredi Bobic and Krassimir Balakov, who helped the team that triumphed in the cup. In 1996/97, the three scored 49 of Stuttgart’s 78 Bundesliga goals.

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