Final results of the 2010-2011 Bundesliga
One of the defining factors of European soccer is that the dominant teams tend to win again and again, but the German Bundesliga has proven itself immune to that rule over the past five years, with four different teams taking home to the title.
This year, it was Borussia Dortmund that ended up on top of the league, capturing their seventh title overall and first since 2002. Dortmund ended up with a seven-point advantage over Bayer Leverkusen, which looks like one of the strongest up-and-coming squads in the Bundesliga. Leverkusen has never won the title, so look to them to be hungry contenders next year. Both of these teams will also start in the playoff round of the Champions League.
Finishing third this season was powerhouse Bayern Munich, in what has to be considered a disappointing campaign. Last season, Bayern advanced all the way to the finals of the Champions League, where they lost to Inter of the Italian Serie A. They were again eliminated by Inter in the Champions League this season, although this time in Round 16. Bayern has earned a berth in the Champions League next year with their third-place finish, but they’ll have to win a playoff to do so.
No doubt that fans of these three teams will be celebrating their success this season as they prepare for what’s sure to be an exciting year of top-tier European competition next season. Those who want to contribute to their family’s festivities back home send family and friends an international wire transfer.
As far as the Europa League goes, two teams have already qualified. Hannover 96, in fourth place overall, will start in the playoff round, while FSV Mainz 05 will begin the third qualifying round. The final Europa League spot will go to the winner of the DFB-Pokal tournament final, and it should be an interesting match to say the least.
A rare feat has occurred this year in that a team from the second division has made it all the way to the end, with MSV Duisburg looking to punch their ticket to European competition. They’ll have to get by Schalke 04, a team that performed extremely well in the Champions League this year despite a terrible performance in the Bundesliga. Schalke 04 is obviously the favorite, but the underdogs never go down easily in matches of this magnitude. Either way, it’s a win-win for the fans – they either get to see an excellent team in Schalke 04 next year, who would have a very good chance of winning the entire Europa league, or the underdogs is MSV Duisburg, who would be fun to watch in international competition.
The German soccer system is interesting in that it uses a somewhat rare system for determining promotion and relegation. All leagues guarantee the top two finishers of the lower league are promoted, but many have a playoff for the four teams placed 3rd through 6th in order to earn promotion. In Germany, the 3rd placed team in the second league actually plays the 16th placed team from the top league in a two-legged matchup, with the winner advancing on aggregate.
This year, it was Bundesliga side Borussia Monchengladbach fighting to stay in the Bundesliga against VfL Bochum, looking to be promoted from the second division. Monchengladbach took a 1-0 lead in the series during the first leg, but with one match to play VfL Bochum could very well end up in the Bundesliga next season.
Regardless of that matchup, it’s already been decided that Eintracht Frankfurt and FC St. Pauli will be sent down, while winners of the Bundesliga 2 Hertha Berlin and runners-up FC Augsburg will join the top division next season.