Bundesliga: 10 reasons why Bayer Leverkusen ended Bayern Munich’s 11-year Bundesliga dominance

Bundesliga: 10 reasons why Bayer Leverkusen ended Bayern Munich’s 11-year Bundesliga dominance

Bayer Leverkusen can finally boast that they have won their first-ever Bundesliga title.

They have done so in masterly fashion under the tutelage of Xabi Alonso. They are, in fact, the only team to remain unbeaten in Europe after 43 matches.

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Below, we analyse the 10 keys to a special championship win.

1. Stable project

The signing of Spaniard Fernando Carro (executive chairman) in 2018 and the return of Simon Rolfes as sporting director laid the foundations.

2. An immovable system

Since his arrival, Alonso has remained faithful to the same formation: 1-3-4-2-1.

3. Refusing to lose

Leverkusen are the only team in Europe to be unbeaten in all competitions: 38 wins and five draws in 43 matches. They have equalled Juventus‘ record of 2011-12.

4. Endless goals

They are also the top-scoring team in the major leagues. They have 123 goals in 43 league, cup and Europa League matches, an average of 2.8 per game.

5. Reliability at the back

Lukas Hradecky (19 goals conceded) is by far the Bundesliga’s strongest goalkeeper this season. He has kept a clean sheet in half of the matches: 15 out of 29.

6. Strong wingers

Alejandro Grimaldo (left) is Europe’s top-scoring defender with 11 goals and 16 assists, while Jeremie Frimpong (right) has 12 goals and 11 assists.

7. Comebacks

In 2024, they have scored seven goals to equalise/comeback in added time: Leipzig (2-3), Hoffenheim (2-1), Qarabag (2-2 and 3-2), Augsburg (0-1) and Stuttgart (3-2).

8. Granit Xhaka

Granit Xhaka, signed from Arsenal for 20 million euros, has emerged as Alonso‘s alter ego. He is the player with the most passes in the major leagues and has become a real leader.

9. The ‘playmaker’

Martin MeissnerAP

Florian Wirtz (17 goals and 18 assists) is Bayer‘s most influential player. He has fully recovered from his serious injury and is a star of world football again.

10. Strength in depth

Up until January, Alonso was betting on a fixed eleven, but, in the end, players who started the season as substitutes (Piero Hincapie, Robert Andrich, Nathan Tella, Patrick Schick…) have been important.

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