German Bundesliga 2018/2019

Il Drago

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Bundesliga is starting tonight with Bayern facing Hoffenheim at Allianz Arena so i think a 2018/2019 season preview is in order. I hope mods don't mind i started a new thread for the new Bundesliga season.


Bundesliga Preview: Can anyone catch Bayern Munich?

If Bayern Munich is a sprinter, they’d probably be Usain Bolt. As it is almost useless competing with Bolt in a race, so it is with the Bavarians in the Bundesliga. Yet every season, German clubs line up hoping to be that Justin Gatlin.

For the sixth successive season, Bayern resumes as defending champions. Despite a false start under Carlo Ancelotti last term, they still romped to the title by a whopping 21 points thanks to Jupp Heynckes. The veteran has since linked up with Alex Ferguson. New boss Niko Kovac is condemned to maintain that hegemony else Heynckes may be forced out of retirement again.

Bayern may not necessarily need another Heynckes rescue mission, however. Not after he revealed to be out of touch with reality. He couldn't keep up with the new trend in Germany; that of young coaches. Schalke boss Dominico Tedesco was the most impressive of them all. Tedesco guided the club to second place, securing a return to the UEFA Champions League. It wasn’t pretty to watch, at times but it was certainly effective.

Just underneath these two, there's a potential fatal four-way battle royal for the other Champions League berths. Hoffenheim and Borussia Dortmund face a mighty task holding on to their spots. Bayer Leverkusen and RB Leipzig, both of which will play Thursday night football, won’t relish a return.

The quest for survival could be even trickier. Newcomers Fortuna Düsseldorf and FC Nuremberg will be eager to re-establish themselves as Bundesliga regulars. For that to happen, however, they must outwit serial strugglers Wolfsburg, Freiburg, Mainz and Hannover. They would be encouraged by the achievement of predecessors.

Here's a summary of all 18 clubs' status heading into Match Day One.

Augsburg

Manager: Manuel Baum
Last season: 12th

Remaining needs: There isn't much change to the Augsburg team that finished 12th last term. Andre Hahn and Fredrik Jensen are the major recruits. However, with two senior left-back still injured, Manuel Baum must push for another.

Season outlook: Baum will continue what he started in December 2016. In that period, the club has improved tremendously. Last season, they sat in the top half for much of the campaign only to end up in twelfth after just one win from last eight outings. With a little more consistency this time around, they could sneak to Europe.

Bayer Leverkusen

Manager: Heiko Herrlich
Last season: 5th

Remaining needs: Leverkusen is an exciting team in every aspect with a perfect blend of experience and youth. While the Bender brothers led the first class, Leon Bailey brings the exuberance. There could be more next term following the addition of teen Brazilian sensation Paulinho.

Season outlook: Heiko Herrlich did a decent job to qualify for the Europa League in his first season. He has enough quality to reach the next level this term.

Bayern Munich

Manager: Niko Kovac
Last season: Bundesliga Champions

Remaining needs: Even without any high-profile signing, Bayern's depth is unrivalled. Kovac's second-string side could still deliver on the domestic front. Although the Bavarians lost Arturo Vidal, Leon Goretzka, Renato Sanches and Gnabry would seem like new additions.

Season outlook: Kovac was Bayern’s nemesis last season. The Croat outsmarted his current employers to the DFB-POKAL. A similar ordeal would be disastrous for Kovac as the domestic double is perceived as Bayern’s heritage.

Borussia Dortmund

Manager: Lucien Favre
Last season: 4th

Remaining needs: Dortmund’s transfer business has been impressive. Although they lost the likes of Andriy Yarmolenko. Sokratis and Gonzalo Castro, Axel Witsel, Abdou Diallo, Delaney and Marius Wolf have come in. Without Michy Batshuayi, they may struggle for goals, though.

Season outlook: Lucian Favre returns to a club that has ambitions to challenge Bayern. That is very attainable should he strike the right balance to suit an attack that features Christian Pulisic, Marco Reus, Maximilian Philipp and Jadon Sancho.

Borussia Monchengladbach

Manager: Dieter Hecking
Last season: 9th

Remaining needs: Monchengladbach showed intent with Alassane Plea’s capture from OGC Nice. Plea scored a remarkable 21 goals In 48 appearances last season. That’s twice as much as Thorgan Hazard – the Foals incumbent top scorer. However, cracks in the middle are still undressed.

Season outlook: Gladbach underwhelmed under manager Dieter Hecking. A club of its pedigree with five league crowns should be a regular in Europe. Hecking must address his outdated methods for that to happen this term.

Eintracht Frankfurt

Manager: Adi Hutter
Last season: 8th

Remaining needs: The Eagles’ wings were ripped apart after a high-flying campaign. Kevin-Prince Boateng, Omar Mascarell and Wolf each took a piece. Losing manager Kovac to Bayern left bare nakedness.

Season outlook: Adi Hutter has some altitude to climb. Continental football and DFB-Pokal isn’t an often see around Commerzbank-Arena. With an impressive win ratio of almost 60 per cent at each of last four jobs, however, the 46-year-old may just carry on with Kovac’s legacy.

Fortuna Dusseldorf

Manager: Friedhelm Funkel
Last season: 2.Bundesliga Champions, Promoted

Remaining needs: Unlike previous summers, Fortuna managed to keep hold of its best players. Marvin Ducksch and Benito Raman would sharpen their attack. Defensive frailty, however, may harm them. Especially on the right where Jean Zimmer is all alone.

Season outlook: Friedhelm Funkel is specialist at guiding smaller sides to the top-flight. Fortuna’s recent improbable story was his sixth – a new German record. The 64-year-old is still a novice at keeping them up.

Freiburg

Manager: Christian Streich
Last season: 15th

Remaining needs: Caglar Suyunku was Freiburg’s biggest piece of business this summer. But unfortunately, the Turkish defender moved away to Leicester City for around £18m. He may not be missed should new recruits Dominique Heintz and Philipp Lienhart find their feet early.

Season outlook: Freiburg’s thin squad grappled with continental and domestic rigours. The club depended mostly on 15-goal hero Nils Petersen for survival. Christian Streich is no stranger to the second tier. He could be reunited with old friends at the end of this season.

Hannover 96

Manager: Andre Breitenreiter
Last season: 13th

Remaining needs: For every single departure, Hannover brought in a fitting replacement. Wallace, Kevin Wimmer, Genki Haraguchi and Takuma Asano would easily slot in for Salif Sane, Felix Klaus, Martin Harnik and Marius Wolf respectively. But in truth, the squad is pretty much as it was last season.

Season outlook: Andre Breitenreiter’s target in his second campaign will be European football. The 44-year-old could only stare from a distance having finished 13th. He may not even remain in the division less so Europe come May.

Hertha Berlin

Manager: Pal Dardai
Last season: 10th

Remaining needs: A much taller barricade than the famous Berlin wall stood before the club’s summer dealings. There are very few buzzes around the Olympiastadion. Yet holding onto attacking trio Salomon Kalou, Davie Selke and Marvin Plattenhardt could prove the real coup.

Season outlook: Pal Dardai will be in charge for the fourth season. Like their more renowned Italian namesake, the Old Lady should be playing in Europe. They fell two places short last time and could likely it get right this term with a couple more signings.

1899 Hoffenheim

Manager: Julian Nagelsmann
Last season: 3rd

Remaining needs: Hoffenheim would be without last season's two best players; Mark Uth and Serge Gnabry. Both plundered a combined 37 goals and assists. Trailing their paths is a tall order for new recruits Leonardo Bittencourt, Vincenzo Grifo, Ishak Belfodil and Joshua Brent.

Season outlook: Julian Nagelsmann enhanced his reputation further with another Champions League spot. Being his final campaign, he’d relish another top podium finish. But that seems doubtful with his shallow squad.

Mainz 05

Manager: Sandro Schwarz
Last season: 14th

Remaining needs: Bolstering offensive options was Mainz’s primary target this summer. Only three surviving teams struck fewer than Sandro Schwarz’s 37. Jean-Philippe Mateta was brought in from Lyon to do the job.

Season outlook: Mainz narrowly escaped the drop in the last two seasons. The Carnival Club may run out of luck this time around. In any case, they'd keep up with the feast in the lower league.

Nurnberg

Manager: Michael Kollner
Last season: 2nd 2.Bundesliga, Promoted

Remaining needs: Nuremberg is christened ‘The Legend’ but there’s nothing protruding about its summer business. Four newcomers have followed the club up to the Bundesliga, however, for a meagre £1m combined. That’s relegation standard.

Season outlook: As surprising as it may seem, Nuremberg is Germany’s second most successful club with nine trophies. Der Club has become famous for bouncing back and forth the Bundesliga in recent time. They could jump back to the second-tier again.

RB Leipzig

Manager: Ralf Rangnick
Last season: 6th

Remaining needs: Leipzig is yet to replace influential midfielder, Naby Keita who joined Liverpool. At the final third, Merseyside rival Ademola Lookman is doubtful about another loan spell. In defence, however, The Bulls have gotten it right.

Season outlook: With Nagelsmann set to take charge in 2019/20, Sporting Director Ralf Rangnick would act as a forerunner. Much isn’t expected from the 60-year-old. Another continental spot would be termed success.

Schalke 04

Manager: Domenico Tedesco
Last season: 2nd

Remaining needs: Bar Thilo Kehrer, Schalke have kept the spine of its squad including creative sparks Guido Burgstaller and Daniel Caligiuri. But most importantly, they held on to charismatic tactician, Tedesco.

Season outlook: Even though it would be tough replicating, Tedesco would be proud of last season’s finish. There is little doubt the 32-year-old would have a long and successful career, but this could be the toughest test yet.

Stuttgart

Manager: Tayfun Korkut
Last season: 7th

Remaining needs: Faithful would easily overlook Daniel Ginczek’s exit to Wolfsburg should the club hold on to Benjamin Pavard. The 22-year-old has risen from German peripheral to a world champion in little above one year. Alongside some new recruits, the future looks exciting for the Reds.

Season outlook: The Bundesliga wasn't receptive for Stuttgart. Hannes Wolf paid the ultimate price for a difficult start. Tayfun Korkut took over and made an immediate impact to finish seventh. The 44-year-old can capitalise on that strong performance to reach Europe this term.

Werder Bremen

Manager: Florian Kohfeldt
Last season: 11th

Remaining needs: In Davy Klaassen, the Green-Whites have a like-for-like replacement for new Borussia Dortmund boy Thomas Delaney. Seven others followed the ex-Everton midfielder to Weserstadion including Claudio Pizarro. With three goalkeepers currently injured, the 39-year-old may be required to step in if nothing is done.

Season outlook: Berlin and Bremen may be hundreds of miles apart, however, on the pitch last season, they were separated by merely one spot. Like Juventus lost German brothers, regular European football is paramount. That should return next year.

Wolfsburg

Manager: Bruno Labbadia
Last season: 16th

Remaining needs: The Wolves required play-off to survive. Judging by their summer business, they have taken their second chance graciously. Wolfsburg has spent big; almost £40m on five players. That’s good enough to climb towards mid-table.

Season outlook: The club entrusted its destiny on experienced gaffer, Bruno Labbadia. With almost four decades in the job, the 60-year-old should know the tricks to avert the drop.
https://www.itsroundanditswhite.co.uk/articles/bundesliga-preview-can-anyone-catch-bayern
 

monster09

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Dortmund vs Augsburg was superb game to watch, ended up 4-3 and now Dortmund will go to International break as top of the table team.
 

Kova10

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Paco alcacer is insane. Six Goals scored in roughly 80 minutes playing time.
By the way for those who have time dont miss Bayern - Gladbach. Both great teams and a slippery in munich would cause a total chaos. They nicht even realise Robben and Ribery are past it.
 

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Paco alcacer is insane. Six Goals scored in roughly 80 minutes playing time.
By the way for those who have time dont miss Bayern - Gladbach. Both great teams and a slippery in munich would cause a total chaos. They nicht even realise Robben and Ribery are past it.

Three hours and an 0-3 result to Gladbach later...
 

Il Drago

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If Dortmund could have continuity in their game and results we could finally have a title challenge in Bundesliga this season. It seems they made a right choice with the coach after their Bosz disaster. They definitely need to work on set pieces though. Their defending was extremely poor and it almost costed them the game. I can't say the same about Bayern. So far it seems the Bayern job is too big for Kovac. 4th match in a row without a win in all competition for Bayern and second loss in a row in Bundesliga. They seem to be in a big crisis and there are even reports of players having issues with Kovac. Especially James. International break couldn't come at a better time for them.
 

brehme1989

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Good, let's sign James then :)
 

Kova10

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Currently the player i would take of the Bundesliga is Thorgan Hazard. He develeoped into a player of international class.
 

wera

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Forget it. I keep mentioning his name, but people don't know how good he actually is.
 

Bergpavian

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The FC Bayern press conference from today is already a classic. Hoeneß, Rummenigge and Salihamidzic demanded more respect for Bayern and its players.

Rummenigge: "Human dignity shall be inviolable." Hoeneß five minutes later: "Juan Bernat nearly cost us the Champions League alone. He played like shit. That's why we sent him away."

I know Rummenigge has many fans here but I can't stand these sanctimonious criminals.



Opinion: Who do Bayern Munich think they are?

"Disrespectful, derogatory, outrageous." The Bayern Munich bosses pulled no punches in their scathing criticisms of the media on Friday. But DW's Matt Ford's found their comments hypocritical, arrogant and dangerous.


"I don't know whether what you write is good or bad," a relaxed Niko Kovac told journalists ahead of Bayern Munich's trip to Wolfsburg on Saturday. "I don't read it."

The new Bayern head coach may not read the press, but his superiors on Säbener Straße apparently do — and they don't like it.

The announcement of an extra press conference with chief executive Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, club president Uli Hoeness and sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic after Kovac had certainly raised eyebrows. Were the big Bayern bosses about to have their say on the team's current run of four games without a win? Was Kovac's job really safe?

"Let's see what happens," said Kovac with a grin as he left the room to be replaced by his superiors. Perhaps he knew what was coming.

Open fire

What followed was an unprecedented three-pronged assault on the German media as Bayern's top brass raged against "false facts," "untruths" and "disrespectful, derogatory and outrageous" reporting about the 28-time German champions, who are currently languishing in sixth place in the Bundesliga.

Admittedly, some of the tabloid coverage of Bayern Munich — and the German national team, whose under-fire coach Joachim Löw was also afforded protection by the Bayern bosses — is indeed sensationalist. This is especially true during international breaks when actual news is thin on the ground for certain reporters who style themselves as insiders, making a career out of the Bavarian club's immense popularity.

Nevertheless, the only "disrespectful, derogatory and outrageous" behavior in Munich on Friday came from Rummenigge and Hoeness themselves — while Salihamidzic did his best to look just as angry at their side.

Constitutional crisis

"Today is an important day," announced Rummenigge. "It's important that the most important club in Germany positions itself clearly," added Hoeness. "You may be enjoying it [Bayern's current slump in form] but we will no longer stand for such sneering coverage," continued the CEO.

The sheer impudence of such regal pronouncements cannot be overstated. FC Bayern München may be the richest, biggest and most successful club in Germany and one of the famous sporting institutions in the world. But they are not the most important, they are not beyond reproach and they are not above scrutiny.

"Human dignity shall be inviolable," preached Rummenigge, theatrically quoting article one of the German constitution, adding: "I don't know if that applies to footballers too" and referring to criticism of Manuel Neuer, Mats Hummels and Jerome Boateng in recent weeks.

Were Herr Rummenigge to continue reading, he would also find that article five guarantees "freedom of the press and freedom of reporting … there shall be no censorship."

And before that, he may stumble across article three which promises that "no person shall be favored or disfavored because of sex, parentage, race, language, homeland and origin, faith, or religious or political opinions" – values which don't appear to be shared by the middle-eastern state of Qatar, where Bayern routinely travel for winter training camps and whose state airline adorns the sleeves of the club's famous shirt.

The extent to which Hoeness' criticism of Mesut Özil over the summer is compatible with article three is also questionable, while the 66-year-old former Bayern player is presumably already familiar with articles 105 and 106 on taxes.

Dangerously close to 'fake news'

Put simply, the hypocrisy, arrogance and degree of detachment is staggering. But what does it matter? It's only a game, after all. Perhaps we shouldn't take football so seriously.

Yet for better or for worse, the sport of football is a worldwide social phenomenon, the importance of which has seen it swell to a multi-billion-dollar industry. The influence, wealth and power of FC Bayern München is testament to the importance of the game. Which is why the messages from two men as powerful and influential as Rummenigge and Hoeness are so dangerous in a sense which goes far beyond football.

The suggestions that independent journalism is not to be believed, that reporters spread "untruths" and "false facts," that any organization is beyond accountability and scrutiny in a democracy and that the public would be better advised to rely on a private organization's internal PR channels for their information, are dangerous and irresponsible when extrapolated into a wider society dominated by Donald Trump, Brexit and right-wing populism.

Disrespectful, derogatory, outrageous, polemical — ironically, the adjectives the Bayern bosses chose were spot on. They could have added arrogant, entitled, privileged and hypocritical, too. They all apply to Rummenigge and Hoeness.

Source: https://www.dw.com/en/opinion-who-do-bayern-munich-think-they-are/a-45959264
 

wera

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Paco keeps scoring too.
 

Shark

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Crazy and thrilling Dortmund-Bayern game. Maybe an early indication of BVB finally breaking Bayern's dominance.
 

thatdude

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Dortmund was like a team possessed in the 2nd half.
 

Il Drago

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Big win for Dortmund in der Klassiker. 3-2. Bayern dominated the first half and Dortmund should consider themselves lucky they were losing only 1-0. Favre's decision to replace Weigl with Dahoud changed the match in the second half. Now Bayern are in trouble. 7 points behind Dortmund. It seems we'll have a real challenge in Bundesliga this season.
 

n4l

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Dortmund was like a team possessed in the 2nd half.

Until paco scored to go up 3-2, then bayern took back the initiative. Great 2nd goal by reus after some ridiculous dortmund misses. Should've easily scored 2-3 more BEFORE the paco goal.
 

Kramerica Industries

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Just gonna point out that the other Borussia side continue to hum along in second place and have the second best goal scoring record so far this season in the Bundesliga.

I've been keeping track of Inter's record in their first eleven games this season vs. equivalent fixtures to see how they're doing, and, when applying the same logic to Gladbach, they're 11 points better off this season than they were last season. Alessane Plea is the joint-leading goal scorer in the league after today's hat trick (along with Reus and Alcacer who both scored goals today; Reus two of them). I don't know where Gladbach would be right now without him; they had periods last season where they really struggled to find answers in the final third, and he's really solved a whole bunch of them with his signing. He's been remarkable.

Onto Hannover at home before a tough December which has visits to Leipzig, Hoffenheim, and Dortmund all before the winter pause. I really hope they remain in touching distance of Dortmund going into that last game. Looks like that Borussia^2 game is a Friday game, as well.
 

Devious

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So is there a chance we have a similar fate?
 

Kramerica Industries

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Bayern coughed up a 3-1 lead in the last 15 minutes at home to 17th place Düsseldorf. Good grief.
 

wera

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<3 world class player in the making
 

Kramerica Industries

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Thorgan setting up a powerful volley from Stindl as well.

I'm biased, but I hope he stays with Gladbach. But if we had to leave, then, sure, Inter it can be.

The goal courtesy "no idea-to nick" on Reddit.
 

wera

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He waited for like 5 seconds to give that pass <3

I just know that Barcelona or City will buy him and then we'll be asking why don't we ever get players like that..
 
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