Bundesliga

Bayern Munich win 25th title - the Bundesliga in 2014-15

 
10:00am on Sunday 12th April 2020
By
Martin Macdonald

Bayern Munich became the first team to win the Bundesliga 25 times when they lifted the trophy on matchday 30, being crowned as champions for the fourth successive season.

Their success was built on a strong defence, breaking the records for most games without conceding (22) and most clean sheets (20 for Manuel Neuer).

Pep Guardiola’s side won the title by 10 points, ahead of Wolfsburg, who outperformed expectations thanks to the performances of Belgian attacking midfielder Kevin De Bruyne, who was involved in 30 goals for the Wolves, setting the Bundesliga assists record.

Borussia Monchengladbach and Bayer Leverkusen also finished in the Champions League spots, with Augsburg, Schalke, and an inconsistent Borussia Dortmund qualifying for the Europa League.

CHANGES

Despite winning the league in the previous season, Guardiola sought to further strengthen Bayern Munich, bringing in Robert Lewandowski from Borussia Dortmund to replace Mario Mandzukic.

An injury to Javi Martinez in the Supercup left Guardiola needing a replacement in midfield, with Xabi Alonso moving from Real Madrid before the end of the transfer window. Toni Kroos went the other direction, moving to La Liga after playing over 200 games for the Bavarian side.

Dortmund attempted to fill the Lewandowski void with Adrian Ramos and Ciro Immobile, but neither made a big impact in the Bundesliga, causing Jurgen Klopp to play Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang at centre-forward rather than on the wing.

Bayer Leverkusen started their transfer activity early, signing Josip Drmic in early May following Nurnberg’s relegation. Having qualified for the Champions League, Leverkusen were able to keep the core of their squad together and suffered no major exits during the summer as Roger Schmidt took over as head coach from interim boss Sacha Lewandowski.

Lucien Favre’s Borussia Monchengladbach saw young goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen leave for Barcelona for €12 million, and turned to Swiss goalkeeper Yann Sommer to become their new number one, arriving from Basel. Thorgan Hazard came on loan from Chelsea, while USMNT’s Fabian Johnson moved from Hoffenheim.

Adam Szalai was one of the biggest inter-Bundesliga transfers, moving from Schalke to Hoffenheim for €6m, while Sidney Sam arrived at the Gelsenkirchen club for €2.5m from Leverkusen.

Wolfsburg looked to the Premier League to find their summer additions, with Nicklas Bendtner moving from Arsenal and Germany international Andre Schurrle trading Chelsea for the Bundesliga.

SUMMARY

Bayern Munich’s signing of Lewandowski from Borussia Dortmund helped Guardiola lift the Bundesliga trophy for the second season-in-a-row. The Polish striker finished second in the top scorer race, tied with Arjen Robben on 17 goals.

Bayern had goalscorers from all over the pitch, scoring 80 times in the season and were not just reliant on Lewandowski. However, the forward’s absence hindered Borussia Dortmund, as Klopp’s side fell to seventh in the table - just three years after winning the title.

In fact, Dortmund’s season was so poor at times, they were bottom of the table on three different matchdays during the campaign. The board kept faith with Klopp, who eventually moved them back up the table to finish in the last European spot.

Bundesliga Player of the Year, Kevin De Bruyne

Wolfsburg were Bayern’s nearest challengers in the league, but were still 13 points behind the Bavarians. Their strong season was thanks to De Bruyne, who set a Bundesliga record with 21 assists.

Borussia Monchengladbach and Leverkusen qualified for the Champions League, with Augsburg and Schalke also finishing in the top six to qualify for the Europa League. Schalke had been in 11th when they sacked coach Jens Keller in October, with Roberto Di Matteo returning to management following his departure at Chelsea.

Throughout the season, Hamburg had three different managers and only kept their top-flight status after an extra time victory in the playoff with Karlsruher.

Paderborn played their first season in the Bundesliga, but spent just one year among the big boys, finishing rock bottom behind Freiburg.

PLAYER OF THE SEASON

KEVIN DE BRUYNE

De Bruyne had played just three Premier League games at Chelsea, but reignited his career in the Bundesliga, first at Werder Bremen and then at Wolfsburg. In 2014-15, he set the Bundesliga assists record, and opened the scoring in the DFB-Pokal final win over Borussia Dortmund.

MANAGER OF THE SEASON

PEP GUARDIOLA

The Spaniard had another successful campaign in the Allianz Arena dugout, guiding Bayern Munich to back-to-back titles. Bayern demolished many of their opponents, including an 8-0 victory over Hamburg and a 6-0 win at Paderborn.

TOP GOALSCORER

ALEXANDER MAIER - 19 GOALS

Robert Lewandowski failed to reach 20 goals in his maiden season in Munich, allowing Maier to finish ahead of him in the top scorer race with 19 goals in 26 goals for Eintracht Frankfurt.

TEAM OF THE SEASON

NEUER; VERHAEGH, NALDO, BOATENG, RODRIGUEZ, BELLARABI, JUNUZOVIC, DE BRUYNE, CASTRO, ROBBEN; MAIER

MOST EXPENSIVE TRANSFER

Andre Schurrle

Chelsea to WOLFSBURG

€32m

KEY MOMENT OF THE SEASON

Bayern Munich went into the winter break 11 points clear of second-placed Wolfsburg, having won their final game in December thanks to a late Arjen Robben goal. Mainz looked to have held Bayern to a draw, but Robben rose highest to meet a cross from Juan Bernat to ensure that Pep Guardiola’s side held a commanding lead at the end of the Hinrunde.

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