There are millions of die-hard fans of European football around the globe but oftentimes, fans associate the top European leagues with Spanish, Italian and English clubs. Granted, there are many countries with thriving communities of Bundesliga team supporters groups. Nevertheless, as a whole, Bundesliga is not thee most popular of leagues or one finds that it comes second and or third on the list of fans’ favourites. This really needs to change. This is why the German league needs to be your top league
Bundesliga is the best league you’re not watching. I was going to try to prove this point by name dropping a few top ballers who started in Bundesliga and are now tearing it up in the rest of the world, but, the more I thought of these names, the more I realised that most of them are still in the Bundesliga. Marco Reus, Aubemeyang, Manuel Neuer, Thiago Alcantara, and Chicharito are just a few that come to mind that are still in the league while Toni Kroos and Mesut Ozil are standout alum of the league. Players come into the league, and they tend to stay put. That says a lot. If players, especially ones like Chicharito who have made a career of bouncing around don’t leave, we all need to be looking at what makes this league so special.
The top four teams at the moment, in order, are Bayern Munich, RB Leipzig, Borussia Dortmund, and Hoffenheim. RB Leipzig is a perfect example of the kind of come-up stories that can happen in the Bundesliga. The club was founded just a few short years ago, in 2009, and now it’s in the Bundesliga trailing the world class club that is Bayern Munich. The club has been promoted up a league every year since its inception, and now it has the opportunity to the win the top flight German division.
Although Bayern Munich may seem to have the title in the bag, other teams still have the chance, at least mathematically, to win it all. Twenty-five matches of the thirty-four game season have been played, meaning that there are nine games left. Hence, each team has the opportunity to claim a grand total of twenty-seven more points if it can win each of the remaining matches.
Lets do a little prediction. So far, the second place club, RB Leipzig has won 60% of the matches this season. Keeping with that trend, the club is likely to win five of the remaining nine matches, which equals fifteen additional points. This means the club is likely to attain sixty-four points, just two more than what Bayern Munich has right now, by the end of the season. Third place Borussia Dortmund has won 52% of the matches this season, meaning that this club is also likely to win five more matches. This puts Borussia accruing sixty-one points by the end of the season, which is still less than Bayern Munich has now. Bayern Munich has achieved a record of winning 76% of matches, so the club is likely to win seven more. If that was to happen, the reigning champions would finish the season with a whopping eighty-three points. Of course, these statistical projections ignore the points here and there that teams can pick up from draws.
So, statistics say that Bayern Munich will win…again. History says that Bayern Munich will win…again. But, I say that, no matter how good a club is, this is still soccer. Soccer is the most unpredictable sport in the world, and it isn’t over until it’s over. Although it’s an improbable feat, there are clubs that can still give Bayern Munich a title run.
At the other end of the table things are a little more cemented. There are three clubs, FC Ingolstadt 04, SV Darmstadt, and Hamburg SV, at risk of relegation. With a margin of ten or more points separating the bottom two clubs from the clubs that aren’t a risk or relegation and negative goal differentials in the double digits, Ingolstadt and Darmstadt are all but certain to be playing in 2. Bundesliga next season. Hamburg has a hope though. The club is only two points behind its closest neighbors, and, even if Hamburg were still in the same place by the end of the season, there would be a silver lining. In Bundesliga, the bottom two teams are definitely relegated, but the third to last club gets to battle it out in a two-leg playoff series against the third-place club in 2. Bundesliga, the second tier of German soccer. The loser plays in 2. Bundesliga, and the winner plays in Bundesliga.
Although the results of the current season paint the league to be one of great disparity, it is not. When you take the super club that could really be in a league of its own, Bayern Munich, out of the picture, things are much more competitive and downright unpredictable. Case in point, the top seven goals scorers are from seven different teams, and, Bayern Munich forward Robert Lewandowski is third on the list. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang comes in first with twenty-three goals scored. Anthony Modeste, a twenty-eight year old French striker, is in second place. Timo Werner, a twenty-one-year-old legend in the making, also ranks in the top seven, and, of course, we can’t forget, the Mexican playmaker Chicharito, also makes the list.
I could go on and on about how entertaining Bundesliga is. (Did I mention that, last year, the average age of managers in this league was 45.1, one of the lowest averages in all of Europe. This means that new, innovative strategies are an everyday occurrence from the clubs headed by these young managers trying to make their mark on the game.) Basically, it’s a league where you know Bayern Munich are going to win, but nothing else is certain. There’s far more to Bundesliga than the Big B’s (Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund). If you’re not watching it, you’re really missing out.