Sunday, June 16, 2024

From Leverkusen’s invincible status to Kane’s domestic romp: What have been the Bundesliga’s main talking points this season?

Tom Dunstan in Bundesliga, Editorial 29 May 2024

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Leverkusen storm their way to the history books

While Bayer Leverkusen might have suffered Europa League heartbreak on May 22nd as they slumped to a 3-0 drumming against Atalanta in Dublin, the German record-breakers have firmly cemented their spot as Europe’s ultimate surprise packages.

Enjoying what was an astonishing Bundesliga romp this season and breaking a string of long-term records, Xabi Alonso’s men have skyrocketed their way to footballing superstardom.

Remarkably unbeaten in all of their 34 Bundesliga appearances this season and writing their name in the history books as invincibles, Leverkusen also completed a domestic double last weekend as they claimed a first DFP Pokal title since 1993.

While there might have been plenty of speculation earlier in the year that Alonso was the leading contender to replace Jurgen Klopp at Liverpool, the former Real Madrid midfielder has announced that he will not be leaving Leverkusen over the summer.

Storming their way to a first Champions League ticket since the 2019/20 campaign, the newly-crowned German trailblazers are undoubtably the major Bundesliga talking point from this season.

Bayern endure a domestic nightmare

Eventually holding off Borussia Dortmund’s charge during the 2022/23 campaign and getting their hands on an 11th straight Bundesliga crown, it appeared almost inevitable that Bayer Munich would be making more domestic history this time around.

However, struggling to find any kind of domestic stability and coming under a huge amount of scrutiny, the German giants remarkably failed to get claim a single piece of silverware.

Suffering an infamous Champions League collapse away at Spanish heavyweights Real Madrid on May 8th as they came crashing out at the semi-final stage, it was also confirmed that Thomas Tuchel would be removed from the Allianz dugout.

Eventually finishing 18 points adrift of Bayer Leverkusen and enduring what has been their worst Bundesliga campaign in recent history, Bayern have plenty of work to do behind the scenes over the next couple of months.

Remarkably set to appoint Burnley boss Vincent Kompany over the coming days, it appears that the now-former German champions are some way off the pace that Leverkusen have set.

Stuttgart are one of Europe’s ultimate dark horses

At the heart of a relegation scrap during the 2022/23 campaign and only just about clinging to their Bundesliga status, Stuttgart appeared to be bracing themselves for another real bottom-three scrap this time around.

However, although Bayer Leverkusen might have rightfully stolen plenty of Germany’s headlines this season, Stuttgart deserve a host of plaudits for what has been an astonishing rise.

With Sebastian Hoeneß’s men signing off their Bundesliga adventure with just a single defeat from any of their final 16 consecutive top-flight appearances, Die Roten also secured what was a stunning silver medal finish.

Eventually putting 73 points on the board and finishing ahead of the likes of Bayer Munich, RB Leipzig and Champions League finalists Borussia Dortmund, the mood around the MHPArena is at an all-time high.

Breezing their way to a spot among Europe’s elite for the 2024/25 campaign and ending their 14-year absence from the Champions League stage, Stuttgart have certainly been one of world football’s ultimate dark horses.

Kane breaks a string of records

Although Bayer Munich might have come under a huge amount of scrutiny this season, there is no doubt that their new attacking icon has continued to steal plenty of the Bundesliga’s headlines.

While many might have been left stunned last summer as Harry Kane completed a £100million move from Spurs, the England skipper has enjoyed a remarkable start to life at the Allianz.

Breaking a host of domestic records this year, Kane bagged 36 goals in his 32 Bundesliga appearances and stormed his way to Germany’s Golden Boot in a sensational fashion.

Averaging a goal just every 79 minutes and only further cementing his spot as one of world football’s most lethal marksmen, the former Tottenham talisman notched 48 strikes for club and country this season.

Although Kane might still be waiting to get his hands on a maiden piece of silverware, the 30-year-old has certainly proven why Bayern were willing to break the bank last summer.

Heidenheim enjoy a Bundesliga fairytale

Storming their way to a maiden Bundesliga campaign this season, it is no secret that Heidenheim opened up the 2023/24 campaign tipped as a leading contender to find themselves at the heart of a relegation scrap.

However, for a club that was only formed in 2007, Frank Schmidt’s men have embarked on an astonishing German fairytale as they have skyrocketed their way through the footballing pyramid.

Signing off their maiden Bundesliga adventure with a stunning performance as they secured a 4-1 romp against Koln, Heidenheim have continued to receive a string of praise from across Germany’s elite.

Making what was a famous statement on April 6th as they secured a 3-2 victory against Bayern Munich at the Voith-Arena, Schmidt’s side suffered just a single loss from any of their final nine Bundesliga appearances.

In fact, remarkably securing an iconic eighth-place finish, Heidenheim will already be planning for what will be a famous Europa Conference League campaign next season.


Tom Dunstan

Formerly of The Independent, Tom has spent the past six years as one of our senior writers and betting experts. Alongside working with numerous publications from across the globe, Tom also graduated from the University of Falmouth in 2014 with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Digital Media.
Spending almost the past decade working in countries such as Australia, New Zealand and Canada, he has also spent time featuring in sports radio. Tom can be followed on Instagram - @iamtomdunstan



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