After securing non-relegation, Magdeburg have set their gaze to higher grounds. This is not at all surprising even for the cautious voices
That’s one small step for [a] man, one giant leap for mankind.
These were the words Neil Armstrong spoke when he first stepped onto the surface of the Moon on July 21, 1969.
Over the last few weeks FC Magdeburg have taken a number of small steps to reach the 45-points threshold to make sure they are playing the third division next season. However, at the same time the club are comfortably sitting in second spot in the table, with just five points behind MSV Duisburg in first place. Securing to stay in the division has been top priority for Magdeburg again this season just as it has been for the last year and ever since they have won promotion in 2015. At the same time it sounds like a gross understatement. For large parts of the 2016/17 season the club have found themselves in the top half of the table; the stuttering start to the season most people explained with Second Season Syndrome, something that seemed normal but which the team have managed to shake off with relative ease. So much so, that promotion is now a realistic option with only ten matches to play before the final game on May 20.
There is cautious optimism felt in and around the city of Magdeburg. Many will remember the painful and disheartening experiences of the mid-1990s and early 2000s when a decline into the 5. division seemed plausible in 1995 or the club went into administration in 2004. Even as recently as 2012 the club were bottom of the league only to be saved by a re-structuring of the league set-up which was the lifeline for them. Since then Magdeburg have risen steadily from the lower end via the middle regions of the table to the top. It is a long way that they have put behind them taking each step at a time and in their own pace. That this appears to be a rather fast one has been accepted even by the most sceptical supporters. Reason for this are the good work off the pitch and the professionalism with which the work has been done. Rarely, if ever have announcements been loudmouthed as it has been in the past.