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Season highlights: Bundesliga 2021-22
Jul 4, 2022, 3:33:00 AM

Season highlights: Bundesliga 2021-22

Aside from the English Premier League (EPL), the Bundesliga is among the top echelon of football leagues in Europe that football fans pay close attention to. In the 2021-22 season, the Bundesliga had a phenomenal season that had fans looking forward to it.

How did the season go and how are the highlights for some clubs who made a lot of noise? Here are the biggest events of the 2021/22 season of the Bundesliga and why you should look forward to the league. 

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Bundesliga 21/22: Exciting football matches from left to right

There was no shortage of great games and series concerning the Bundesliga. It should come to no surprise as well considering the fact that the Bundesliga has some of the best players as well. That covers other leagues like the La Liga and Premier League. 

Here are the top stories of the 21/22 season:

FC Borussia Dortmund: Erling Haaland’s final year as a BVB

Some say that Borussia Dortmund is defined by the greatness of Erling Haaland. The 6’4” forward from Norway who has the skills of a fast striker and the defensive prowess of the best defenders in the world says so. 

Seeing him play is a spectacle, no doubt, but as Borussia Dortmund decided to drift away from Haaland, they will be stuck with their old roster with cunning young players. These same players are also ready to take the spot of Haaland once he joins the EPL’s one of the most prominent clubs, Manchester City. 

For Haaland’s final year, he did spectacularly well, having MVP numbers and goals that were truly special as he lifted his team to the second seed on the Bundesliga table. However, he felt the need to transfer clubs and to another league.

Erling Haaland’s time with BVB is some of the greatest in his career. This gave him a lot of opportunities to sign shoe deals and even major sports outlet sponsorships. With his departure, Dortmund will have to rely on their young squad for the offence that they will have in time. 

As for Erling Haaland himself, Manchester City will become an even more dominant club after securing the championship of the same year in the Premier League. With the current Manchester City roster, they could win five more titles in the following seasons with Haaland and company about to wreak havoc in the Premier League. 

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FC Bayern München: 10th consecutive titles 

Bayern Munich won their tenth straight Bundesliga championship with a 3-1 victory against archrival Borussia Dortmund, capping off a decade of domestic supremacy. The squad moved 12 points ahead of second-placed Dortmund thanks to goals from Serge Gnabry, Robert Lewandowski, and Jamal Musiala.

When Bayern Munich beat Dortmund 8-0 in the Bundesliga, it was Dortmund's first victory at home since 2014. For Bayern to win a tenth straight German title is a record in Europe's top five leagues. This surpassed Juventus' nine consecutive Serie A victories from 2012 to 2016.

Afterwards, Bayern's players doused themselves with beer. Benjamin Pavard was the first player to pour beer on Julian Nagelsmann following the coach's first championship as a manager.

Having won his second Bundesliga title, Nagelsmann, 34, is the second-youngest coach to ever achieve this feat in Germany. To put it in perspective, when Matthias Sammer made his Dortmund debut in 2002, Benjamin Pavard was only a few years old.

Marco Rose's Dortmund players intended to keep Bayern Munich's championship celebrations going for another day. Even though they had little possibility of catching the Bavarian juggernaut, they were left to lament the consequences of their own blunders and wasted chances.

Rose and Emre Can were both cautioned by referee Daniel Siebert at the conclusion of the first half because of the rising tensions.

Bayern took the lead in the 15th minute on a goal by Leon Goretzka, who cushioned the ball back for Serge Gnabry. On his thigh, the unmarked German attacker volleyed it into the left post.

Dortmund's Erling Haaland wasted a golden opportunity before Serge Gnabry's second goal was ruled out for offside in the 30th minute by VAR.

King Lewandowski soars to the top as he scores 35 goals in a season ⁠

This is Robert Lewandowski's eighth year in a row as Bundesliga's leading scorer. Lewandowski scored 35 goals in Bayern Munich's 34 games this season, averaging one goal every 82 minutes. 

Patrik Schick of Bayer Leverkusen was the closest contender with 24 goals. Borussia Dortmund's Erling Haaland rounded out the top three scorers with 22 points.

For the first time in Bundesliga history, Lewandowski has won all seven of the top scorers' canons. As of this writing, the runner-up in the all-time list has won the award 20 times since 2013/14, 30 times since 2015/16, 29 times since 2017/18, and 34 times since 2019/20.

Having scored 312 goals in 384 Bundesliga games, he is far ahead of second-placed Klaus Fischer, who scored 268 goals. Between 1964 and 1979, the late Bayern attacker scored 365 goals in 427 Bundesliga games for Bayern, but Lewandowski has the higher goal production rate. 

Neuer sets record Bundesliga wins of 311

After his team's 4-0 victory against Union Berlin, Manuel Neuer surpassed Oliver Kahn's previous record of 311 victories in the Bundesliga.

Neuer, 35, set a new Bundesliga record with his 150th clean sheet as Bayern thrashed Union 5-0 on Matchday 27, producing a series of fine saves.

After tying Oliver Kahn, the former Bayern Munich goalkeeper and current club CEO, with 310 victories on Matchday 21, Kahn had to wait several weeks to become the undisputed record holder. 

A side effect of Neuer's injury has been a lack of appearances for Bayern, who have drawn their last two matches (1-1 draws against Hoffenheim and Bayer Leverkusen). Bayern Munich's 311th Bundesliga victory came on the club's 460th outing in the league.

When Neuer joined FC Schalke 04, he won only 77 of his first 156 Bundesliga games, but he went on to become one of the best goalkeepers of all time with Bayern Munich, winning 234 of his first 304 Bundesliga games.

With lightning speed, he smashed Kahn's previous record. Before hanging up his gloves, the Bayern CEO and Neuer's predecessor as captain and goalie won his last matchday of 2007/08 by defeating Hertha BSC.

At the start of this season, the current record holder broke Kahn's Bundesliga record for clean sheets (204 for Karlsruhe and Bayern) and is currently comfortably ahead on 211.

Kahn resigned at the age of 38, but he was recently mentioned in the Abendzeitung claiming that Neuer, who is 35 years old, may play even longer. 

Bayern Munich captain Manuel Neuer's contract ends in 2023. With this, Bayern president Karl-Heinz Rummenigge has declared that an extension to the term is a top priority for the club. Thomas Müller, who has 300 Bundesliga victories to his credit, might fall to third place by the year's end, a figure that even Neuer has eclipsed.

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Biggest questions for the future of the Bundesliga

If you want to know the future of the league, here are a few questions that will help you learn about the next few seasons of the Bundesliga. 

Post Haaland syndrome: Will Dortmund recuperate? 

Absolutely! There are a lot of great players in Dortmund that can fit Haaland’s role. For starters, their manager is an amazing coach who can make a lot of great plays. In the 2020/21 season, Terzic was already Dortmund's head coach and led the club to UEFA Champions League qualifying and victory against RB Leipzig in the DFB Cup final.

Although BVB's 3-4-2-1 system flopped in the second Bundesliga game of the season, Terzic has used 4-2-3-1 or similar formations in every subsequent league match. It's a safe bet that the rookie coach will use it again.

In his first full Bundesliga season, Haaland scored 27 goals in 27 appearances, making him the most prolific striker in the league. Before moving to Manchester United that summer, Jadon Sancho served as his right-hand man in the final third.

At the age of 18, Raphael Guerreiro and Gio Reyna both had their greatest seasons to date. With Guerreiro contributing seven goals and eight assists in all competitions, Reyna had his best season yet, with seven goals and eight assists in all competitions.

There was a noticeable difference in Marco Rose's Dortmund following Terzic's promotion to head coach of Borussia Mönchengladbach in the summer of 2013.

Rose's squad decisions were as reactive as they were proactive. He used a three-man defence in 10 of his 34 Bundesliga games and a 4-3-3 or a 4-2-3-1 in the majority of the others. There were a lot of times this season when we saw an intricate midfield diamond set up.

Marco Reus was a delight to watch as he started 29 Bundesliga games, the most in his nine seasons with the club, without an injury. It didn't matter whether he played as a contemporary, pushing No.10 or lined up on one side of Haaland; he was the major assist provider after Sancho (in addition to scoring nine goals).

Meanwhile, Jude Bellingham was the most often used player. It's no surprise that his participation in goals increased from one every 353 minutes in 20/21 to one per 190 minutes this season after he was allowed more freedom last term. He was almost always a half of Terzic's double pivot alongside Thomas Delaney, Axel Witsel, or Emre Can.

With the return of fit-again Reyna, Can, Bellingham, Julian Brandt, and Thorgan Hazard in the line-up behind the striker, Bayern Munich has an option to choose from in terms of attacking options.

For a decade, Süle and Schlotterbeck might fill Germany's centre defence, not to mention Dortmund's. Neither player fell below the 99th percentile for progressive passes or shot-creating actions this season.

In addition to his 4-2-3-1, Terzic has an excellent option. Haaland's absence from Dortmund's front line has left the club short of a suitable alternative. 

As a 17-year-old still honing his technique and a different profile of striker, Steffen Tigges possesses a comparable build but less explosive power than Youssoufa Moukoko.

Adeyemi, Reus, and Reyna would be a formidable front three, and Haaland's next team may benefit from it. Despite the absence of a recognised superstar, Manchester City won the English Premier League this season. With Guerriero and maybe Thomas Meunier free to attack from the other side in a 3-4-3, the team has more options for scoring goals.

But in defence, where Mats Hummels is still one of the finest centre-backs in the world with the ball at his feet, it may truly come into its own. Having Schlotterbeck and Süle on each side of him, he'd have the finest possible insurance policy for the team to find his range in that fluid front three.

Will Bayern München win more consecutive titles?

Hans-Joachim Watzke saw it coming even as Borussia Dortmund was celebrating its greatest triumph. At the Olympiastadion in Berlin in May 2012, Dortmund had just thrashed Bayern Munich 5-2 to win the Bundesliga and the German Cup for the first time in their history.

Bayern's domination has a frigid strangeness to it, the type that comes when traditions are stretched and deformed to the point that you no longer know what they mean. Bayern's dominance has amassed tremendous achievements and intimidating statistics over the previous decade. 

Winning 10 consecutive Bundesliga championships is an incredible feat in and of itself. On the other hand, if a team can win 10 championships in a row, was it really that difficult to begin with?

That odd and restless sensation of boredom frequently comes from inside the Bayern coach, Julian Nagelsmann. He'll win his first league championship, making him one of the most promising young managers in Europe. 

On the other hand, Thomas Müller is set to win his eleventh. Nagelsmann said on Thursday that the Bundesliga was ‘a little bit less significant’ in Munich.

Bayern is about on par with recent championship winners in terms of points-per-game averages. They have 91 points in 38 games so far this season. Manchester City, Real Madrid, and Paris Saint-Germain are all on track to reach 90, 90, and 89 points, respectively. 

It's the calibre of their rivals that makes a significant impact. A 10-point difference separates the second and fifth-placed Bundesliga clubs, on average, during the previous five seasons. The average difference between the two countries, England and Spain, is 17 points. In a sense, Germany has given up an exciting championship race in favour of more and tighter rivalries at the lower levels of the league.

As a follow-up, there are already signs that things might be about to change early on. Bayern's ability to pluck out the finest players of its competitors has been one of its most lethal weapons. 

Lewandowski, Mario Götze, and Mats Hummels were snatched from Dortmund a decade ago. Marcel Sabitzer and Dayot Upamecano were just snatched from RB Leipzig, a newcomer in the Bundesliga. 

Neither Erling Haaland nor Jude Bellingham are plausible targets for Bayern Munich in the near future. Florian Wirtz, the Leverkusen youngster, may be a better fit at Liverpool. 

Bayern's summer list, on the other hand, has players like Ajax's Noussair Mazraoui and Antony, Benfica's Darwin Nez, and Leeds winger Raphinha.

Champions League prospects 

Here are the top prospective clubs that will enter the Champions League the following year: 

Bayern Munich 

Since the 2012–13 season, Bayern Munich has won the Bundesliga a record-breaking 10th time.

In the Champions League, Bayern Munich is a familiar name. After losing to Paris SG in the 2019/20 season, the Bavarians finally took home the championship in their previous campaign. As the most successful German team, Bayern has won three championships.

Borussia Dortmund 

After an encouraging start, Borussia Dortmund faltered and had to come from behind to finish the season in second place. Aside from their Europa League exit at the hands of Rangers, Dortmund's season has been a complete disaster.

Bayer Leverkusen

With the departure of a number of high-profile players to the Bundesliga, Leverkusen has maintained its strong status in the league.

RB Leipzig

RB Leipzig had to depend on a last-minute drive to earn the last Bundesliga Champions League berth, despite the club's European success.

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Want to know more about the Bundesliga?

Here are the most frequently asked questions about Bundesliga: 

What Bundesliga team should I support? 

Bayern Munich is the most well-known German team. There's a reason they're frequently referred to as ‘FC Hollywood’, a glamorous squad in a glitzy city. When it comes to European champions, Hansi Flick is back to his ruthless best.

How many Bundesliga games in a season? 

The Bundesliga only has 34 games, which begs the question: Why? There are a total of 18 teams competing in the Bundesliga. 

There are 17 teams in all, and they all play each other twice in a round-robin fashion. Due to the fact that each club plays the other 17 teams twice, the season will only consist of 34 league games.

How many Bundesliga teams qualify for the champions league?

The top four clubs that maintain their seeds in the Bundesliga table will qualify for the UEFA Champions League. 

Bet on the best Bundesliga teams here at Sportsbet!

There are a lot of reasons to bet on the most prominent teams in the Bundesliga. If you happen to get the urge to bet on the best Bundesliga clubs, then visit Sportsbet to bet on the best German football games at the click of a button! 

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Words: Vonn Consul

Image: Alamy 


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