Carl Zeiss Jena

Carl Zeiss Jena is one of Germany’s oldest clubs. It was founded in 1903 by workers at the Carl Zeiss optics factory and achieved considerable success at a local and regional level in the first half of the 20th century.

After the war, the club became one of the most successful sides in East Germany, winning the DDR Championship three times and the Cup four times. In 1981Jena reached the final of the of the Cup Winners’ Cup.

After German re-unification, Jena was placed in the 2 Bundesliga. Despite finishing second in 1992, the club struggled both on and off the pitch – often dropping into the third and fourth divisions, and at times coming close to bankruptcy.

Carl Zeiss Jena won promotion back into the 3 Liga in 2017, beating Viktoria Köln in the relegation playoffs.


The Ernst-Abbe-Sportfeld has a capacity of 12,990, with 6,540 seats. The stadium was built in 1922 and is named after a local entrepreneur. It has undergone several improvements over the years, the most recent being the construction of a new stand in 1997.


Standing places cost between 10 and 12 euros and seats cost between 24 and 28 euros, depending on the opposition. You can buy your tickets at the club, at the online ticket shop and at several outlets in the town (see the club website for details).


You can get to Jena by train from Leipzig (direct – 90 minutes) or Berlin (via Naumburg – 3 hours). You will arrive at Jena Saal station. You then walk towards the town centre and catch the 1, 4 or 35 tram, which will take you directly to the stadium.


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