Posts Tagged ‘Bundesliga’

Player of the Season

Robert Lewandowski: Only Mario Gomez and Klaas-Jan Huntelaar bettered the Pole’s return of 22 Bundesliga goals this term, not bad for a man who started the season as second-choice striker for Borussia Dortmund. His goals, assists and link-up play as the lone striker have been an integral part of The Borussians title success. So much so, in fact, that Lucas Barrios, the man whose injury gave Lewandowski his chance, has been sold to Chinese Super League outfit Guangzhou Evergrande.

Eurosport’s Ian Holyman said: “22 goals is a great return for a man who started the season as second-choice to Lucas Barrios. The Pole seized his opportunity wonderfully when Barrios returned injured from the Copa America, and I think gave Dortmund more as their lone striker than the Paraguayan did in 2010-11.”

Young Player of the Season

Marco Reus: He’ll be a teammate of Lewandowski next season, having agreed back in January to play in the black and yellow of Dortmund from next season, with a fee of around £17.5m reported to have been paid for his services. If he carries on from this season, that will be an absolute bargain. Only Gomez, Huntelaar and Lewandowski have more ‘points’ in terms of goals and assists combined, with Reus delivering 18 goals and 9 assists for Monchengladbach – a remarkable return for a 22-year-old, and one that played a huge part in The Foals securing a Champions League spot.

Ian Holyman said: “Sensational for Mönchengladbach…He’s a player who I think will receive wider acclaim at EURO 2012, where he isn’t likely to start, but will be explosive when he comes off the bench.”

Manager of the Season

Jurgen Klopp: While honourable mentions must go to Lucien Favre (‘Gladbach) and Christian Streich (Freiburg) et al, Klopp deserves this for leading Dortmund to back-to-back league titles for the first time since the mid-90s. His role in the success of the side, and the development of youngsters like Mario Gotze, cannot be underestimated, and his reputation is now such that his name is linked with almost every top managerial vacancy. However, you’d imagine he’ll be at Dortmund for the forseeable (and very bright) future.

“Managed to find the rights words to inspire his team to hold off Bayern, who invested heavily last summer, once again.” – Ian Holyman.

Team of the Season (4-2-3-1)

Ter-Stegen; Piszczek, Hummels, Dante, Lahm; Bargfrede, Kroos; Harnik, Kagawa, Reus; Lewandowski.

Do you agree? Should someone else have won? Shocked Huntelaar was left out of the team of the season? Leave a comment and let us know…

The Bundesliga is over for another season (*sigh*), and we at Das Boot are jumping on the bandwagon that is end of season awards. Vote below to have your say on Player, Young Player and Manager of the Year.

 
 

One team fighting to come up, another fighting to stop themselves going down. It can only mean one thing: the Bundesliga play-off is upon us.

Hertha BSC narrowly avoided automatic relegation on the last day of the season, with FC Koln the team joining Kaiserslauten in 2. Bundesliga.

Berlin’s reward for temporarily beating the drop is the double-headed play-off against Fortuna Dusseldorf, who finished third in Germany’s second division.

Berlin were only promoted back to the Bundesliga last year, after a solitary season in the second tier, and that will not be something they’ll be looking for more of.

For Dusseldorf, meanwhile, promotion would represent a remarkable rise through the leagues for a side that were in the 4th division eight years ago, and were only promoted from the third division in 2009.

Hertha’s form is, given their league position, unsurprisingly poor, with just one win, one draw and three defeats from their last five games. However, Dusseldorf’s is not much better, a bit of a surprise given their final league place. They head into the game on the back of two wins, two draws and a defeat.

Hertha will also take heart from winning such a crucial game against Hoffenheim on the last day of the season, and the same cannot be said for Dusseldorf. For that reason, I’d back to Die Alte Dame to stay in the Bundesliga.

Eurosport’s Ian Holyman echoed these sentiments, saying: “Having seen their [Dusseldorf’s] display against ten-man Duisburg on the final day of the season, and the poor form they’ve had in 2012 – just 4 wins – I cannot see them beating Hertha.

“Admittedly, Hertha have not been in great form themselves since the turn of the year…but they have players of genuine quality in their squad, who have under-performed.

“Dusseldforf, other than young attacking midfielder Max Beister, who’ll return to Hamburg in the summer when his loan expires, have no-one of similar ilk.”

 

Who’ll be the Bundesliga side after these two games? Comment below with your thoughts ahead of the play-off…

The die has been cast, and both Greuther Furth and Eintracht Frankfurt will be plying their trade in the Bundesliga next season.

Furth are celebrating as champions, with Frankfurt happy to have played second-fiddle as the end result has ultimately been the same: promotion.

You’d have to go all the way back to matchday three to find an instance of neither side being in the top two positions, and they have occupied the automatic promotion spots together since matchday 22.

Olivier Occean has led the charge for Furth this season, with 17 goals and 6 assists for the Cloverleaves. He has been aided and abetted by, to name but two, Sercan Sararer (9 goals, 12 assists) and Christopher Nothe (13 goals, 1 assist).

For their individual efforts, it has been a team effort that has seen Mike Buskens men reach the promised land that is the Bundesliga for the very first time.

Ian Holyman, Bundesliga writer for Eurosport, said: “Furth have been the bridesmaid and never the bride a number of times in recent years, but has now won the 2BL title and will play in the top flight for the first time. It promises to be tough for them, though they will have taken heart from the performance of Augsburg this season.

“They have some useful players, such as forward Olivier Occean, who has scored goals at all levels he’s played at up till now, though he’s unproven at the highest level. As they don’t have the biggest resources, they are going to require their squad to step up collectively.”

While it’s first time for Furth, it’s a case of back at the first time of asking for Frankfurt.

Most expected them to bounce straight back from their relegation last season, and they haven’t disappointed.

The Eagles have done it with style as well, finishing as the league’s top scorers. Alexander Meier matched Occean’s 17 goals and 6 assists, with Mohamadou Idrissou finishing with 14 goals, while both Benjamin Kohler and Erwin Hoffer scored 9.

Holyman said: “That accolade [of most attractive side] goes to Eintracht Frankfurt, who have bounced back into the top flight at the first attempt.

“They have some excellent players, such as Alex Meier, while I really rate their right-back, Sebastian Jung, who is undoubtedly a future German international. I’d give them more of a chance of staying up as they have greater financial clout too.”

Joachim Low has named a 27-man preliminary squad for this summer’s European Championships, which can be seen in full below. Players in bold are those we think will miss out on the final 23-man squad.

Goalkeepers:

Manuel Neuer (Bayern Munich), Marc-Andre ter Stegen (Borussia Monchengladbach), Tim Wiese (Werder Bremen), Ron-Robert Zieler (Hannover).

Defenders:

Jerome Boateng, Holger Badstuber, Philipp Lahm (all Bayern Munich), Per Mertesacker (Arsenal), Mats Hummels (Borussia Dortmund), Benedikt Howedes (Schalke), Marcel Schmelzer (Borussia Dortmund).

Midfielders:

Mesut Ozil, Sami Khedira (both Real Madrid), Toni Kroos, Thomas Muller, Bastian Schweinsteiger (all Bayern Munich), Marco Reus (Borussia Monchengladbach), Mario Goetze, Ilkay Gundogan (Borussia Dortmund), Sven Bender (Borussia Dortmund), Lars Bender (Bayer Leverkusen), Andre Schuerrle (Bayer Leverkusen), Julian Draxler (Schalke), Lukas Podolski (Cologne).

Strikers:

Cacau (Stuttgart), Mario Gomez (Bayern Munich) and Miroslav Klose (Lazio)

 

What are your thoughts on the squad? Has anyone been missed, or included when they shouldn’t have been? Who’ll be the four to be left out? Voice your opinion using the comments box…