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10 best Bundesliga sides in history

  • A look at the ten most dominant sides in Bundesliga history.
  • Not surprisingly, record champions Bayern Munich appear thrice in the list.
ANALYST
Feature
Modified 14 May 2020, 18:05 IST
Bayern Munich are the most successful side in Bundesliga history.
Bayern Munich are the most successful side in Bundesliga history.

The German Bundesliga this weekend becomes the first top-flight football league to resume after the Covid-19 outbreak. German chancellor Angela Merkel announced last week that the 2019-20 Bundesliga season would restart from May 17, albeit with no spectators in the stadiums.

On that note, we bring you the ten best sides in Bundesliga history.

Ten best sides in Bundesliga history

10) FC Koln (1963/64)

FC Koln were the surprise first winners of the Bundesliga in 1962-63.
FC Koln were the surprise first winners of the Bundesliga in 1962-63.

In the inaugural season of the Bundesliga in 1962-63, FC Koln managed to etch their names into the history books by becoming the first unlikely winners. They finished the season with 45 points in 30 games, winning seventeen games, drawing eleven and losing only two.

Koln's closest competitors that season were Meidericher FC, who finished second with 39 points. Koln were then managed by Georg Knopfle and consisted of stalwarts like Karl-Heinz Thielen, Christian Muller, Hans Schafer and Hans Sturm.

Thielen and Muller, with sixteen and fifteen goals respectively, finished in the fifth and sixth spots in the Bundesliga scoring charts in 1962-63. Despite Uwe Seeler topping the list with 30 goals, Hamburg could not finish in the top four of the Bundesliga that season.

The 1962-63 triumph was the first of two Bundesliga titles for FC Koln, with the next winning coming one and a half decades later in 1977/78.

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9) Borussia Monchengladbach (1974/75)

Borussia Monchengladbach rejoice with their 1974-75 Bundesliga title.
Borussia Monchengladbach rejoice with their 1974-75 Bundesliga title.

Managed by Heiness Weisweller, Borussia Monchengladbach in the 1974/75 Bundesliga season was one of the best sides to have stepped on to a football field.

Consisting of the mercurial Jupp Heynckes in attack, Christian Kulk and Dietmar Danner in midfield and the duo of Hans Jurgen Wittkamp and Berti Vogts in defence, Monchengladbach had all their bases covered.

Heynckes, who would later go on to become a title-winning manager at Bayern Munich, ended the season with a phenomenal 27 goals, topping the Bundesliga scoring charts that season. Teammate Allan Simonsen netted eighteen times to take fifth place in the list of top goal-scorers in the 1974-75 Bundesliga.

The team from the Bokelbergstadion ended the campaign with 50 points, winning 21 games, drawing eight and losing five to finish six points ahead of second-placed Hertha BSC.

8) Hamburger SV (1981/82)

Franz Beckenbauer won the 1981-82 Bundesliga title with Hamburger SV.
Franz Beckenbauer won the 1981-82 Bundesliga title with Hamburger SV.

The 1981/82 season of the Bundesliga was the nineteenth edition of the competition. Bayern Munich were the defending champions, but Hamburger SV finished five points above the Bavarian club.

Die Rothosen ended the campaign with 48 points, finishing three points ahead of FC Koln. Captain Hors Hrusbech led from the front, scoring 27 Bundesliga goals that season.

Under the able tutelage of Ernst Happel, Hamburger won eighteen games, drew twelve and lost only four.

Uli Stein, Jurgen Groh, Ditmar Jakobs, Jimmy Hartwig, Jurgen Milewski and an ageing Franz Beckenbauer were all members of Hamburger's Bundesliga-winning side.

This was Hamburger's second Bundesliga title, and they would go on to defend their title the next season successfully.

7) Werder Bremen (1992/93)

Werder Bremen (green and white) in the 1992-93
Werder Bremen (green and white) in the 1992-93

Few people gave Werder Bremen a chance ahead of the 1992-93 Bundesliga season. Bayern Munich and defending champions VfB Stuttgart were the favourites for the title.

However, the Otto Rehhagel-managed side managed to exceed expectations. Werder Bremen accumulated 48 points in 34 games, usurping Bavarian giants Bayern Munich by a point to win their Bundesliga title.

Bremen won 19 games, drew ten and lost only five Bundesliga games that season. New Zealand striker Wynton Rufer netted 17 goals in the season. Rufer's goals played a crucial role in ensuring Die Werderaner did not fall short in the dying stages of a hotly-contest Bundesliga campaign.

The title was not won until the last day of the Bundesliga season. Bremen needed Bayern to not win by a goal difference of four, and thankfully the Bavarian club's titillating 3-3 draw against Schalke ensured the same.

Goalkeeper Oliver Reck, defenders Thomas Wolter and Rune Bratseth along with midfielders Andreas Herzog and Miroslav Voltava were all critical members of Bremen's 1992-93 Bundesliga-winning side.

6) VfB Stuttgart (2006/07)

Bundesliga VfB Stuttgart celebrate their 2006-07 Bundesliga title
Bundesliga VfB Stuttgart celebrate their 2006-07 Bundesliga title

In the 44th edition of the Bundesliga in 2006-07, VfB Stuttgart, managed by Armin Veh won a thrilling title on the final day of the season.

There was a tight tussle between Stuttgart and Schalke all season. However, a 2-0 Matchday 34 win against Energie Cottbus ensured the Bundesliga title went to the Mercedes Benz Arena. Die Roten, who ended the campaign with 70 points, winning 21 games, drawing seven and losing six as they finished two points ahead of Schalke.

Thomas Hitzspelger and Sami Khedira, who were the stars on a drama-filled final day, were impressive throughout the season. Midfielders Roberto Hilbert and Pavel Pardo were also crucial members of Stuttgart's successful Bundesliga campaign. 

Mario Gomez' 14 strikes were enough to top the goal-scoring charts that season, ahead of Brazilian Cacau who scored 13 Bundesliga goals.

5) Borussia Dortmund (2010/11)

Borussia Dortmund rejoice after winning the 2010-11 Bundesliga title
Borussia Dortmund rejoice after winning the 2010-11 Bundesliga title

The Borussia Dortmund side in the 2010-11 Bundesliga was one of the best sides to have graced the competition.

Under the able tutelage of Jurgen Klopp, BvB accumulated 75 points from 34 games, finishing seven points ahead of Bayern Munich. Dortmund won 23 games, drew six and lost only five during their victorious 2010-11 victorious Bundesliga campaign.

Ably led by captain Sebastian Kehl, BvB also immensely benefitted from the stellar performances of Robert Lewandowski, Lucas Barros, Shinji Kagawa, Mario Gotze, Mats Hummels and Neven Subotic. Barros ended the campaign with 16 goals, which placed him in the fourth position in the season's leading goal-scorers list.

Gotze, with eleven assists to his name, was spectacular throughout the season as Dortmund lifted their first Bundesliga title in nine years, and their seventh title overall.

4) Borussia Dortmund (2011/12)

Borussia Dortmund celebrate their 2011-12 Bundesliga title
Borussia Dortmund celebrate their 2011-12 Bundesliga title

Borussia Dortmund successfully defended their Bundesliga title in 2011-12, conjuring a then-record haul of 81 points as closest rivals Bayern Munich finished a distant second, eight points adrift.

Winning 25 games while drawing six and losing three, BvB won their fifth and latest Bundesliga title before Bayern Munich's seven-season Bundesliga dominance began.

Robert Lewandowski, with 22 strikes, ended as the third-highest goal-scorer in the season. Japanese international Shinji Kagawa scored 12 goals and bagged nine assists. Lewandowski's Polish teammate Jakub Blaszcykowski provided eight assists as Dortmund staved off Bayern to win back-to-back titles for the second time in the Bundesliga era.

Dortmund's Marco Reus was adjudged the Bundesliga player of the season.

3) Bayern Munich (2014/15)

Bayern Munich celebrate their 2014-15 Bundesliga title.
Bayern Munich celebrate their 2014-15 Bundesliga title.

The 2014/15 season of the Bundesliga saw Spanish mastermind Pep Guardiola pocket another league title for Bayern Munich with skipper Phillipe Lahm at the helm.

By winning their first nine games of the season, Bayern Munich became the first Bundesliga side to do so.

New signing Robert Lewandowski, who moved to the Allianz Arena from Borussia Dortmund, ended the season with 17 goals. Teammate Arjen Robben, with Lewandowski, finished joint second in the Bundesliga scoring charts for the season.

Thomas Mueller contributed thirteen goals, and ten assists as Bayern lifted a hat-trick of Bundesliga titles. The Bavarian giants ended the season with 79 points, ten more than second-placed VFL Wolfsburg.

2) Bayern Munich (2012/13)

Bayern Munich celebrate their 2012-13 Bundesliga title.
Bayern Munich celebrate their 2012-13 Bundesliga title.

In the 2012/13 season, champions Bayern Munich set a new Bundesliga record for most points in a season (91), as defending champions Borussia Dortmund finished a distant 25 points adrift.

Jupp Heynckes' men lifted the title on Matchday 28, which marked the earliest triumph by a Bundesliga side. In a dominating season, the Bavarian club created a bevvy of records.

Apart from their record points haul, Bayern's 29 wins in the 2012-13 season marked the most wins by a club in a German top-flight season while their one defeat was the fewest endured by any side in Bundesliga history.

After winning eight consecutive Bundesliga games to start the season, Bayern slumped to a home defeat to Bayer Leverkusen.

However, it turned out to be their only defeat of the season as the Bavarian giants went on to win their first Bundesliga title in three years and become the first German club to win the treble.

1) Bayern Munich (2013/14)

Bayern Munich celebrate their 2013-14 Bundesliga triumph
Bayern Munich celebrate their 2013-14 Bundesliga triumph

The Bayern Munich side that won the Bundesliga title in 2013/14 season is arguably the best in the near six-decade history of the competition.

Finishing just a point short of their record Bundesliga haul set a season ago, the Bavarian giants tallied 29 games, three draws and two losses in another dominant domestic season.

Just like in 2012-13, Bayern broke or equalled a plethora of Bundesliga records in 2013-14. The defending champions went one better than in 2012-13 by sealing the Bundesliga title with a record seven games to spare, becoming the first Bundesliga team to win the title in March.

Bayern set a new record for the longest unbeaten start to a Bundesliga season (28 games) as Pep Guardiola's charges also broke their record of most consecutive away wins in a season (10). The defending champions ended the season with a record tally of 19 straight wins.

Published 14 May 2020, 18:05 IST
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