It’s August and you know what that means – German Football!
All the talk seems to center on who is destined to capture the trophy of Bundesliga come Spring. But the favorites tend to be favorites for a reason. I’d rather look at and breakdown the “sleeper” teams who can impact the league and create drama just like us fans want to have. So without further ado, let’s being…
It has been a mixed transfer window for the side; they have lost key players like Gonzalo Castro and Son Heung-Min, but have brought in quality replacement in Charles Aranguiz and Javier Hernandez. The loss of Castro to Dortmund was a tough blow for the side, since the midfielder was their main tempo controller and enabled the attackers to play at the sheer pace that Leverkusen have become famous for.
They had a successful season last time out, securing fourth place; and were a joy to watch. Midfielder Hakan Calhanoglu and forwards Karim Bellarabi and Stefan Kiessling still remain and they have decent quality at the back; if the new signings bed in well then Bayer should have a strong season ahead.
Gladbach had a great season last time out, claiming third spot on the league table. Over the summer they lost one of their stars however; as striker Max Kruse departed for Wolfsburg. The loan spell of Christoph Kramer also ended as he returned to parent club Leverkusen. They have purchased attackers Josip Drmic and Thorgan Hazard to compensate, but the team chemistry that Kruse had is tough, if not impossible, to replace.
They are a side that relies on patient passing and build up play, which is why Kruse was so essential; he participated in the build-up and ensured that the opportunities the team created were taken. Unless they manage to fit their new players into the system right away, it is tough to see them achieving the successes of last season, and they could end up being a possession controlling side with no bite.
These teams will be the likely sleepers in this season’s Bundesliga, but below them are several others that could pose a credible threat as per the odds reflected at online bookmaker bet365. Frankfurt are a team who are always worth watching; their games tend to have massive amounts of goals both for and against and makes for good viewing. Similarly, Hoffenheim provide entertaining games and play an ‘all-in’ sort of strategy that is great for viewers. Augsburg, of course, is worthy of keeping an eye on although it seems extremely unlikely that they will manage to repeat the previous season’s achievements.
Overall, it seems like the Bundesliga is set for another great season. With the foreign money pouring in as clubs from other leagues buy German talent, the German clubs are focusing more on the youth academies, an approach markedly different from the other major leagues. It certainly makes for exciting viewing and also results in a great number of talents being unearthed; the German national team is testament enough to that.