Cherundolo’s Hannover avoids relegation

Hannover 96 1 (Getty Images) 


Steve Cherundolo's Hannover 96 has endured as difficult a season as one could imagine, but the club's 3-0 victory over VfL Bochum saw it do something that seemed so unlikely just months ago. It avoided relegation.

On the final day of the Bundesliga season, three first half goals were enough to assure Hannover another year in Germany's top flight. The result also relegated Bochum, which will be joined by Hertha Berlin in Germany's second division next season. Nurnberg could be the third team to drop, but will play in a relegation play-off against second division side FC Augsburg to decide its fate.

Hannover's longest serving player, Cherundolo played all 90 minutes in the win, finishing off a season that will surely rank among his most difficult. Along with battling relegation for much of the campaign, Cherundolo and Hannover had to deal with the death of starting goalkeeper Robert Enke, who committed suicide in November.

While the win will keep Hannover in the Bundesliga, it doesn't mean Cherundolo will return. Cherundolo's contract with the club ends this summer, and the 31-year-old might be able to attract offers from elsewhere with a solid showing in next month's World Cup.

How happy are you that Cherundolo and Hannover avoided relegation? Surprised? Do you see Cherundolo re-signing with the club, or will he land elsewhere? Would you like to see him in MLS?

Share your thoughts below.

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50 Responses to Cherundolo’s Hannover avoids relegation

  1. Smirking Kitten says:

    He should resign with Hannover. He still has plenty to offer at the European level and would captain the team.

  2. Mr. Derp says:

    Once this season ends, and Oka Nikolov leaves Frankfurt, Cherundolo will become the longest-serving one-club man in the Bundesliga. He’s deputized as captain, I believe, ever since the tragic suicide of Enke. Cherundolo had the chance to leave for Bolton in 2005 and turned it down to stay at Hannover. On top of that, the club seem to be making off-season moves already, having signed Manchester United and Germany U-19 goalkeeper Ron-Robert Zieler. I would be surprised and disappointed if he did not stay.

  3. WK says:

    I think he re-signs too. Why not finish your career as one of the clubs most loved players?oh yeah, he’ll probably take a paycut…

  4. Josh D. says:

    Agreed. And who’s going to take a 31 year old right back no matter how good his world cup performances are???

    At 31 you’re lucky to not get a younger buck taking over and you’re resigned to more of a mentor position.

    Only place to go from here is MLS but he’ll stay.

  5. Josh D. says:

    What a team, St. Pauli! I look forward to seeing them next year in the top flight!

  6. Mark says:

    Ives, I just wanted to let you know my friends and I are done reading your blog after that Canadian stunt you pulled the other day. We’re going get our MLS and US info from a real journalist like Goff

  7. Vik says:

    I’m just waiting for them to erect a Cherundolo statue in the city. I think his family’s settled, he probably won’t move back after he’s retired either. Maybe he’ll be brought on as part of the Hannover staff…

  8. Josh says:

    Mark, don’t be a zit, the man is just trying to widen his reading base. Pretty sure 99% of the content on this site is American, with an American interest. If the Canadian game gets better, it provides more competition for our boys as well.

    While I do think ‘dolo stays, as he has meant much to the club, if he does not, I doubt he would return home to the US. He will get a fair offer from a good club in Germany/France possibly.

  9. DingDong says:

    Mark has to be joking. I’m not Canadian, but I’m up for an update on what your great neighbor to the North is doing. It would be nice to have some more competition around here. (Beating them at hockey is already so much fun, even if it doesn’t happen often enough).

  10. DingDong says:

    err.. “our neighbor” not “your neighbor” I’m American.

  11. wilyboy says:

    The most important thing is that neither of our right back options have to deal with the mental hardship of being relegated right before the world cup.

  12. ETJ says:

    good riddance, if you were offended by him providing Canadian news then you clearly too stupid to contribute to this blog anyway

  13. Austin says:

    lol, wow… are acting as if he is 35

    31 is not old at all for a defender….he has plenty left

    this is surely his last WC but plenty of teams would take him

  14. patrick says:

    cherundolo has somehow been a starting/contributing player for a bundesliga team for a decade and somehow STILL flies under the radar when it comes to American fans. He’s not flashy, but he gets the job done well, and without concern. To me, he’s the least worrisome defender we have. ALong with howard donovan altidore and dempsey, he’s one of the only players that I do not question when given the start. Let’s hope he continues the good success this summer

  15. Fred says:

    Of course, Spector does have to deal with the mental hardship of sucking.

  16. Cherundolo is from southern California right? If so, he might come to MLS if he can get on the Galaxy … the US World Cup Veterans Team.

  17. Fred says:

    Dolo still has a few more years in Germany. If Hannover had been relegated, he would have been able to move to another Bundesliga team.

  18. Brooklyn Dave says:

    Is this a serious comment? SBI publishes a blog entry on the Canadian national team’s schedule and you throw a hissy fit because you don’t find it interesting? That’s just plain weird. Could you not simply scroll past it to MLS or USMNT info? You might want to let your friends speak for themselves, I’m guessing they might want to let you boycott SBI all by yourself.

  19. jachapin says:

    Spector is a very talented player (remember his crosses from the Confederations Cup?). He still makes some mistakes, but he needs a spot on the field. In the next few years I expect him to emerge as one of the better defenders in the world.

  20. Fred says:

    Right, he did look great at the Confeds Cup. But his form at the end of this season was the stuff of nightmares.

  21. Clint Mathis wants to play for MNT again, pretty please Bob says:

    This is great. Cherundolo should be able to get a short deal probably 2 years or so. 1 club man. That is a great thing in itself. He will be a LEGEND for them by the time he retires.

  22. Clint Mathis wants to play for MNT again, pretty please Bob says:

    remember that goal he prevented a few years ago? it shows on youtube. He basically ran like 30yards in 4 secs to keep a ball from going in despite his team giving up on defending it.

  23. marty says:

    i think for canadians it’s neighbour.

  24. Josh From GA says:

    I think there was some match fixing to get them out of the drop zone go look at the game vs M’Gladbac and check the goal difference and tell me im wrong =P

  25. Warren says:

    I agree Spector’s – been mediocre to bad the final third of the EPL season.

    Whether from exhaustion or from the crazy boardroom antics I can;t tell.

    But 1st thing new West ham owners said in Jan was everyone on the team was overpaid and for sale. Yeah that worked real well to motivate the team to fight relegation.

    Anyway, here’s hoping Jonathan’s back in form in South Africa.

  26. Warren says:

    I was wondering about that M’Gladbach game, certainly seemed like Hannover was being allowed to run up the score.

  27. patrick says:

    at least they’re not as obvious as it is in italy. The fixing and throwing in that country is sickening

  28. Tony in Quakeland says:

    In the every competitive “Stupidest Post Contest” we have a new leader…

  29. Tony in Quakeland says:

    I have decided that Steve Cherundolo is one of life’s litte Soccer Intelligence Tests. When someone dismisses him, says he shows nothing, etc., we can just smile, nod and move along….

  30. Judging Amy says:


  31. Dave says:

    He’s probably got another 2 years or so of prime football left …it would be nice to see him get a “money” contract before coming home to MLS.

    Great to read about his accomplishments and leadership helping to keep Hannover up…

  32. Chris in Belfast says:

    He’s also been playing on the opposite side that he’s best at.

  33. Warren says:

    Right; but I was hoping he’d show he could do that better than..he who will not be named, except by BB

  34. Warren says:

    Yeah Monchengladbach rolling over 7-1 for a relegation fodder squad was real subtle.

  35. Warren says:


  36. war says:

    why not try cherundolo at left back? Putting him at right is alright, but moving spector to left is looking risky now. In case of an injury to Boca or Demerit(who are both out right now), i would like to see Cherundolo go left and keep spector right for his crossing and positional sense, both of which are negated when he’s on the left.

  37. ZacIndy says:


  38. Joamiq says:

    Ha! Get the hell out of here, jackass. Unless this is a joke, in which case, nice.

  39. Ryan says:

    I though Canada was one of our national parks.

  40. Joamiq says:

    Can’t imagine Dolo on any other team.

  41. Jennifer says:

    Altin Lala has been with Hannover 6 months longer than Dolo, all though he missed all but 4 games this year. He also was their captain for a long time. Dolo has been a vice-captain for about 4 seasons now.

  42. Jennifer says:


  43. Jennifer says:

    *Lala did spend a few season with Dinamo Tirana in Albania (as a teenager) and Borussia Fulda in Germany before going to Hannover.

  44. Jennifer says:


  45. Clint Mathis wants to play for MNT again, pretty please Bob says:

    So how much does Cherundolo get in wages with Hannover? I’d imagine he must be 1 of the most famous Americans in Germany right. what kinda guy is it? Quiet and hard working right?

  46. Austin says:

    Lol, like LA needs him with two up and coming right backs, Franklin and deLaGarza

  47. Austin says:

    In other US news….Gooch and Stu are named for their respected squads. Both have good chances of playing. This pretty much means Davies is the only question mark right now.

  48. Colin says:

    i agree with you tony, but you may want to re-read that comment or you were being ironic

  49. GoGunners says:

    agreed 110% so under appreciated

  50. DaveW says:

    Hey, I’m still disgusted by all this coverage of UEFA champions league, EPL, Bundesliga, la Liga, Serie A, USL, Eurocopa, Mexico,Libertadores, Toronto F.C.,etc.

    I will give SBI props for joining everyone outside Mexico by barely mentioning the regional club championship after all the MLS sides were eliminated…

    Oh, wait, it’s “The >World< of Soccer with an American Voice.” I need a blog that only covers MLS. Oops, no, foreign players. College? Doggone, same thing. I got it, high schools with no transfer students. Any y’all got any links?