According to broadcaster WDR, the police encircled the group just before they reached the memorial, where about 200 people had gathered.
The authorities confiscated Tasers, brass knuckles and tear gas from the group.
The hooligans were not from Cologne themselves, but had travelled to the city to disturb the gathering.
In 2001, the National Socialist Underground (NSU) set off a pipe bomb in a shop owned by a German-Iranian family, severely wounding the shop owner's then-19-year-old daughter.
The NSU had crafted the homemade explosive and brought it into the store using a Christmas cake container.
Two of the three members of the NSU have died, while the third member, Beate Zschäpe, is currently on trial for 10 counts of murder of people of Turkish and Greek origin and one police officer.
Four other associates are also on trial.
In October, a Holligan Against Salafists (HoGeSa) rally attracted around 4,000 hooligans and quickly devolved into violence, leaving 59 police officers injured and several police vehicles damaged.
In Essen, police also corralled 100 hooligans from entering a thousands-strong demonstration against intolerance and racism.
In that case, police also confiscated weapons from a portion of the group, including knives, baseball bats and gloves filled with sand.