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Champions League qualification crucial for Bayern

This season Bundesliga giants Bayern Munich have endured an awful season by their high standards.

The Bavarian giants are currently fourth in the German top flight, seven points behind second place Bayer Leverkusen.

Second

Germany currently only has two automatic Champions League spots and a place in the Champions League play-offs.

Finishing in the top two of the Bundesliga is imperative for the German giants. As striker Mario Gomez admitted the Bayern players don’t fancy a trip to Bulgaria to play in front of 3,000 fans.

Bayer Leverkusen, as I have mentioned in previous articles seem to get an attack of nerves just when they look set to be successful. Ironically Bayer are managed by Bayern-bound head coach Jupp Heynckes but look to be in pole position to clinch the automatic Champions League spot.

Leverkusen have enjoyed another good season and if they can avoid their annual end of season collapse then they should be able to clinch one of the automatic Champions League spots. However it’s unlikely that they can catch runaway leaders Borussia Dortmund at the top of the Bundesliga.

The Bundesliga surprise package Hannover 96 are currently third two points ahead of Bayern. Bayern will be confident that they can leapfrog the minnows into third place.

Underachieving

Bayern Munich should have performed far better than they have this season with the players they have in their squad. Unfortunately even the biggest clubs struggle when their star players pick up injuries.

Bayern star wingers Franck Ribery and Arjen Robben have been missing from the side through injury for large periods of the season. If the pair had been fit then maybe the season wouldn’t have been the struggle it has been.

Bayern had a lot to live up to following last season’s fantastic campaign, as Bayern won a domestic treble and also got to the final of the Champions League. It would have been near impossible for Bayern to have been as successful as last season.

Future

Bayern will be looking to secure Champions League football for next season with ex-head coach Jupp Heynckes returning to the club from second place Bayer Leverkusen. Heynckes won two Bundesliga titles in his first spell at Bayern and he will be hoping that when he arrives the club are in the best possible shape.

He will inherit a squad from Louis Van Gaal full of underperforming international players. The current Bayern squad will need to impress between now and the end of the season if they are to be in Heynckes plans for next season.

I can see Heynckes having a full overhaul of his squad. If reports are to be believed Heynckes could raid his former club for some of their top players.

Reputation

For now though current boss Louis Van Gaal has the task of trying to ensure the club make the Champions League and retain their reputation as one of the biggest clubs in Europe. No doubt next season the Bavarian club will enjoy a better season because by Bayern’s standards it couldn’t really get any worse.

Can Bayern secure an automatic Champions League spot in the Bundesliga?

Thu 31 March, 2011
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