Xtratime Community banner

1 - 20 of 36 Posts

·
First Place winner, March 2009 Photo Contest
Joined
·
2,968 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
The new Bundesliga season is going to kick off in 2 weeks with a real classic match, Bayern vs Hamburg.
Let's have a little season preview, i will give you my comprehensive views on the Bundesliga teams 08/09 but others are invited to write, too :smileani:.
 

·
First Place winner, March 2009 Photo Contest
Joined
·
2,968 Posts
Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
Top Teams

FC Bayern

Bayern is going into a new era with Klinsmann taking over from Hitzfeld. Klinsmann changed many things, the training facilities were completely overhauled with chill-out-area, Budda statues and so on :D , he has the biggest coaching staff, introducing special coaches for almost everything but what did not change (apart from Olli Kahn of course..) was the Bayern squad. Borowski and 2nd goalie Butt are the only new signings so far.
Klinsmann proved with the german NT that he is a good coach, but there is no proof yet if he can prevail as a league coach where he has his players around him every day and not only every 1 or 2 months.

Bayern for sure still has the strongest team but losing Kahn will not make things easier for Bayern. New number 1 goalie Rensing is not as good as Kahn imho, just an average keeper ( by Bundesliga standards...) and i wouldn't wonder if Bayern are in market for a top goalie in the winter. Nevertheless the squad is still good enough for the Bundesliga title but the Bayern officials were setting their sights at the CL. They didn't say that it's the target to win a CL trophy yet but Rummenigge and Hoeness often could be heard that they expecting Bayern to shine in the CL again.
Well, maybe in the group stages but to shine in the later CL stages, the squad needs 1-2 really good players imho. Bayern is esp. depending on Ribery, they should add a 2nd creative player.

player to watch out for
Podolski and Schweinsteiger : will they be able to convert the good performances they had for our NT to Bayern ?

season prediction
Depending on Klinsmann being able to successfully make the transition from a NT coach to a league coach, Bayern is still the top favorite for the Bundesliga title. But the title won't come as easy as last year.

Bundesliga : Champions
CL : quarter finals (with a lucky draw, the semis may be possible)

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -


Werder Bremen

Bremen lost a couple of experienced players which were not replaced yet. Tim Borowski went to Bayern, Ivan Klasnic went to Nantes, both on a Bosman free transfer. Those 2 will be missed for sure, not only that they were good players but they were also at the top of the team hierarchy. A player who will not be missed is left back Pierre Womé ( bosman free to Cologne). In central defender Prödl and midfielder Husejinovic they only signed 2 young talents up till now. But never count out Klaus Allofs, i'm pretty sure that the best Bundesliga manager will turn up with 1 or 2 big transfers as he always did in the past, main target is a top striker.
But at the moment, the Bremen squad is definitely not improved to last years team. In addition to that, both Diego and Mertesacker will miss the start of the season due to Olympics (Diego) and a knee injury(Mertesacker).

players to watch out for
Aron Hunt - can the talented attacker finally develop into a top Bundesliga player?
Diego - will his relationship with the team and the Werder fans be harmed by his unpermitted participation of the Olympics ?

season prediction

Bundesliga : Pos. 2-5
CL : 3rd after group stage

It's hard to give a prediction on Werder since they didn't transfer a top player yet. Their squad is still good, but without further improvement and after losing Borowski and Klasnic, i would say that they need a lot of luck to become 3rd. But as mentioned before, i'm expecting Allofs to do something big again on the transfer market, thus pos. 2 may be likely again. The start into the season will be hard without Diego and Mertesacker. And after the olympic tournament ( when the CL starts..) Diego may be exhausted and Mertesacker may still be missing - therefore i don't expect Werder to shine in the CL, but they will be good in the 2nd half of the season again.
 

·
First Place winner, March 2009 Photo Contest
Joined
·
2,968 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Top Teams II

Schalke 04

Schalke is starting into the new season with a completely new coaching staff.
Fred Rutten should kick off a new era at Schalke, they want to win their first championship after 51 years. To do so, he was granted to buy attacker Jefferson Farfan from PSV for 10 Mio, the biggest transfer fee ever spent at Schalke and his old buddy Orlando Engelaar. And if Schalke qualifies for the CL, he will be granted another 12-15 Mio to spend on new players.

Overall, the Schalke squad looks good. With Engelaar, they now also have a lot of depth in the central midfield. Farfan seems a bit overrated to me, nevertheless he is still a good player who should help Schalke. Their defence looks settled ( even without right back Rafinha who fled to the Olympics without permission..), the midfield is good ( though a player with the creativity of a Diego, van der Vaart or Ribery is still missing), the attack has a lot of depth, too.
The biggest danger to Schalkes Bundesliga campaign are the high expectations in Gelsenkirchen. Most of the fans are expecting the team to become Bundesliga champions - as always. This is not impossible, but will be very difficult.

players to watch out for
Manuel Neuer : the most talented young Bundesliga keeper ( together with Leverkusens Adler) - can he get more concistency into his performances ? If yes, he will surely be an NT candidate soon.

Jefferson Farfan : can the most expensive Schalke player pay back his 10 Mio transfer fee on the pitch ? The fans will keep a close eye on him, Schalke fans are always hypercritical with expensive young players, therefore it won't be easy for Farfan.

season prediction

Bundesliga : Pos 2-3.
CL : 3rd/round of last 16.

But Schalke still first has to qualify for the CL - if they end up in the UEFA-Cup, they will be one of the favorites to win the trophy. Concerning the Bundesliga, i'm pretty sure that Schalke will make it into the CL again. The Bundesliga title is only possible if Bayern completely fails.
 

·
First Place winner, March 2009 Photo Contest
Joined
·
2,968 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Top Teams III

HSV

As Schalke, also HSV is starting with a completely new coaching staff into the new season. Now Martin Jol is the commander on the bridge and he (like Klinsmann) brought a huge staff of assistant coaches with him.

There was not much activity on the transfer market so far, squad players like Miso Brecko and Mario Fillinger left the team, the contract of Juan Pablo Sorin was resolved. Young winger Jonathan Pitroipa and left back/midfielder Dennis Aogo, both from Freiburg, are the only new signings so far. Pitroipa really looked promising in the pre-season.

The main question is, if van der Vaart will stay for another season. Real Madrid is after him but appearantly, they don't want to pay a decent transfer fee. A ridiculous 6 Mio offer was rejected and thrown into the dustbin by the HSV management, Real's response was that they will not do any further attempts to sign vdV this year. Some rumors said that vdV already signed a pre-contract with Real for the 09/10 season when he can leave HSV for 1,5 Mio €.

The current HSV squad is good but not as good as the Schalke oder Werder squads. The transfer policy of manager Beiersdorfer was to sign young but talented players which should develop into top players at Hamburg. Unfortunately only very few players managed to do that, at the moment, there are way too much talents and too few really experienced players in the squad. Beiersdorfer also did some severe mistakes on the transfer market which cost us a lot of money without any return, prime examples are Sorin and Zidan but there are also a couple of 2nd tier players who were not very expensive from the transfer fee but also did not develop as intended. The result is that there is no more money available to reinforce the team, we first have to sell players.

players to watch out for
Jonathan Pitroipa : In the pre-season, he was excellent so far. He is the type of player who is drawing the fans into the stadium - lightning fast winger with spectacular dribblings who also can score. The question is if he can make the transistion from Bundesliga 2 to Bundesliga 1.

Vincent Kompany : Can one of the once most admired talents in european football finally develop into a real Bundesliga player? Maybe the expectations in him were too high, but overall he is nothing but a big dissapointment so far. Chosing the Olympics over HSV doesn't help to make it into the starting team. Jol is already quite angry about that and it seems that he won't be a starter when he returns.

season prediction

Bundesliga : Pos 3-5 ( with vdV), Pos. 5-8 ( without vdV or a proper replacement )
UEFA-Cup : round of last 16 - quarter finals.

Since the transfer period did not end yet and it is still not sure if vdV will stay or other players will be sold or bought, it is very hard to make a prediction. With vdV, HSV is still among the top teams. Schalke and Werder have better squads but if everything runs perfect and vdV stays, a CL spot is possible. Without vdV ( or a proper replacement...), HSV must watch out not to end up somewhere in the Bundesliga midfield.
 

·
First Place winner, March 2009 Photo Contest
Joined
·
2,968 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Top Teams IV

Wolfsburg

After years of being an uninspiring Bundesliga midfield club which sometimes even was in danger to relegate instead of reaching international football as intended, the Volkswagen management decided that something has to be done to upgrade the status of their football team. So they signed Felix Magath as coach and handed him a huge transfer purse in 2007. Magath installed a completely new team and suprisingly managed to take this new team into the UEFA-Cup.

For the current season, he was allowed to spend even more money. Magath continued his overhaul of the squad and to the surprise of the football world, he lured 2 italian World Champions into the boring town of Wolfsburg, central defender Andrea Barzagli and wing back Christian Zaccardo. Other transfers include Nuernbergs attacking midfielder Zvjezdan Misimovic, Belenses left back Rodrigo Alvim and a couple of talented young players.

Though it is not an offical target yet, the Volkswagen management is clearly setting their sights on Champions League football with their huge investments into the team and Magath ( a personal friend of Volkswagen CEO Martin Winterkorn) seems to be the right man to handle this pressure.

The team looks very competetive : The attack is good with Grafite and Dzeko, in the midfield they have some good and experienced players ( e.g. Marcelinho, Josue) and a couple of young hotshots like winger Dejagah, CM Gentner and AM Misimovic. The best part of the team is clearly the defence with the italian signings but there are other good players, too.

players to watch out for
Grafite - can the brazilian striker approve the good performances of his first Bundesliga season ?
Cristian Zaccardo - can the 14 Mio € signing please the huge expectations the Wolfsburg management and the public has in him ?

season prediction
Bundesliga : Pos. 3-5
UEFA-Cup : quarter finals at least

With huge amounts of money, Wolfsburg has created a very good new team which should contend for a CL spot. The only question mark is with all the new players, how long it will take for Magath to find his ideal formation on the pitch. Since teams like Schalke and Werder didn't undergo a complete overhaul like Wolfsburg did in the past 2 years, they still should have the edge over the 'Wolves'. In order to reach a CL spot, everything must run perfect for Wolfsburg but the direct qualification for the UEFA-Cup seems quite likely at the end of the season.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
59,249 Posts
as always a good read
And if Schalke qualifies for the CL, he will be granted another 12-15 Mio to spend on new players.
Just what they needed...a draw against Atletico Madrid :D 50/50 game though IMO

Looking through the transfers..one which popped out: Renato Augusto to Bayer Leverkusen for 10 million euros :eek: Köln signing Petit (maybe enough now to not get relegated?) but all in all, a pretty quiet summer so far for most of the teams bar Wolfsburg.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
59,249 Posts
For their level they're big signings yeah, Forssell and Schlaudraff

but I was looking more at HSV, Werder and Bayern. They've hardly done a thing bar add a rotation player here and there while promoted clubs like Mïnchengladbach and Hoffenheim (compared to their spending last summer) have been pretty quiet too.

What also baffles me is Hertha keeping on buying journeymen standard players I've never heard of. When are they with their massive stadium and their ambitious plans going to make the step up?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
69,613 Posts
good thread :thmbup:

should be another exciting Bundesliga season, I believe having 18 clubs rather than 20 in the top flight helps too
 

·
First Place winner, March 2009 Photo Contest
Joined
·
2,968 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
top teams V

VfB Stuttgart

Stuttgart wants to end up higher in the table after ending at pos. 6 after a dissappointing season as reigning Bundesliga champions.

There was pretty much activity on the transfer market in Stuttgart. Captain Fernando Meira was sold to Galatasary (!) and replaced with Khalid Boulahrouz but apart from this exchange in the defense and the signing of Jens Lehmann on a bosman free transfer from Arsenal, no top players were signed or left the club. Should be interesting what former Leverkusen and Hannover playmaker misfit Jan Simak can do for VfB. This transfer was quite astonishing, Simak played a good season in Bundesliga 2 for Jena and his drinking and night club days are over but it must be questioned if he is the player who can lead a team like Stuttgart into the CL. Stuttgart is also interested in Spurs Kevin Prince Boateng, seems that the VfB now wants to sign some players which are well known for not being easy to handle as a reaction to last years season when the coach thought that there was often too much harmony in the squad even after a loss.

Overall, Stuttgart still has a good squad but it is questionable if they can really break into the top 3. The attack is pretty competitive, the midfield looks still good but the defence is only average imho, esp. after losing Meira.

players to watch out for

Mario Gomez - can he find back into a successful track after his horrible Euro ? I'm pretty convinced that he can. Although many people were laughing about him and his performances at the Euro, he is still a top striker for me. I don't know what was wrong with him in Austria and Switzerland. He played so brilliant in the Bundesliga season but he completely choked for our NT. Maybe it's just a lack of experience and also the 25 Mio offer from Bayern might have taken away his concentration on the pitch. It would be too bad if this guy also ends up as a Bayern player in 1 or 2 years.

Khalid Boulahrouz - can he make a successful comeback in Germany after 2 horrible years for Chelsea and Sevilla where he spent most of his time on the bench ? He had a good Euro and showed that he did not forget how to defend on a high level, nevertheless Fernando Meira for me is a clearly better player which he cannot fully replace. Of course Meira had a bad season at Stuttgart but over the last 6 years, he always was among the top 5 Bundesliga defenders. But Boulahrouz with his pace and good marking and tackling skills on the ground should be a good partner for Delpierre who will reign the air. I wouldn't partner him with inexperienced Tasci who has similar skills to Boulahrouz though...

season predicition
Bundesliga : Pos. 4-7
(UEFA-Cup : round of last 32/16)

As already mentioned, Stuttgart has a good team, but it is not enough to break into the CL imho. The possible addition of Kevin Prince Boateng won't change this. They should contend for the UEFA-Cup. Stuttgart can still qualify for this years UEFA-Cup campaign as well, they won the first round in the UI-Cup against russian team Saturn and now are facing FC Györ from Hungary in the UEFA-Cup qualifiers.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,747 Posts
Bochum next :D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13,464 Posts
thanks for the previews Rothose,great read.
 

·
First Place winner, March 2009 Photo Contest
Joined
·
2,968 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
Top teams VI

Bayer Leverkusen
After Bayern, Schalke and Hamburg the 4th of the top teams which got a new coach ( Michael Skibbe was fired after Bayer completely missed the qualification for european football at the end of 2007/08...) - Bruno Labbadia who came from Fürth ( Bundesliga 2). As a player, he played for almost all big german clubs ( HSV, Werder, Bayern, Kaiserslautern, Cologne...) and he was labeled as one of the best young coaches in Germany.

Leverkusen temporarily looked like a certain CL candidate in the season when they played fine attacking football but the team totally went off the track in the last stage of the Bundesliga championship.

In the upcoming season the club will show a new face not only on the coaching position. Barbarez did quit his career after his contract was not prolongued, Carsten Ramelow also ended his days as an active footballer and Bernd Schneider is still out indefinitely after his back surgery, maybe he is also going into his last season as a pro.

Bayer signed some young and inexperienced but very talented players in brazilian attacking mid Renato Augusto and center back Henrique, ivory coast left back Djakpa. Also joining the club is german nt forward Patrik Helmes from Cologne. Apart the players already mentioned they lost Paul Freier to Bochum, Papadopulos went back to the Czech Republic and Callsen-Bracker went to Gladbach. Of the latter players, no one will be really missed i guess...

Overall, Bayer has a very young and talented but inexperienced squad. Time will tell how good esp. the young brazilians are. With Schneider still out and a central defense which proofed to be quite shaky in the last season, an immediate impact of Helmes, Renato Augusto and Henrique is needed for Bayer to qualify for Europe.

players to watch out for[/n]

Renato Augusto : Bayer had to pay 10 Mio € for just 60 % of the transfer rights for a player which is labled as one of the top talents in brazilian football. Can he already handle the immense pressure which will rest on him ?

Rene Adler : Will he become Germanys new number 1 ? Along with Schalkes Manuel Neuer he is for sure the most talented german goalkeeper but unlike the Schalke player he was performing on a top level over the entire last season.

season prediction

Bundesliga : pos. 5-9

The outcome of the 08/09 season for Bayer Leverkusen will depend on how fast the new signings and the new coach can adapt to Bundesliga football. The past season showed that Bayer Leverkusen needs reinforcements in the defense and in the creative zone of the midfield. Though the new players are all said to be extremely talented, i have my doubts if they can show their talent on a regular basis. With a lot of luck, Bayer can reach direct qualification for the UEFA Cup but a position in the upper midfield seems more likely for me at the moment.
 

·
First Place winner, March 2009 Photo Contest
Joined
·
2,968 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
midtable-teams I

Hannover 96
In Hannover, they dream to reach qualification for a european competetion. Last season it looked for a long period of time that such a qualification is possible, at least UI-Cup, but the team failed to reach pos. 6. Nevertheless it was Hannovers best season since being promoted to Bundesliga again in 2002.

Hannover coach Hecking often stated that Werder Bremen is his role model how he likes to play football, he wants his team to play fast and direct attacking football. To accomplish this goal, Hannover signed attacker Jan Schlaudraff from Bayern and finnish striker Mikael Forssell from Birmingham City. Other signings include Karlsruhe and swiss international central defender Mario Eggiman and a couple of younger talents.

Overall, the current Hannover squad looks much stronger than last years team since only disappointments like Lauth and Hashemian left the club but all important players are staying.

players to watch out for
Jan Schlaudraff - can he find back into track after his horrible season with Bayern ? If he can, he is a possible candidate for the german NT as well.

Robert Enke - he is the main contender with Leverkusens Rene Adler for the number 1 spot in the german nt goal.

Season predicition

Bundesliga : Pos. 6-9

Hannovers current squad looks better than last years team. But i think it's still not enough for a UEFA-Cup spot, nevertheless i'm awaiting some good performances by the team and attractive football.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
59,249 Posts
Lauth lol
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,157 Posts
Great reviews, Rothose. :thumbsup: Well thought and well written.

hehe.. 1860 is pinning all their hopes on Lauth. I've read an interview with their coach a few weeks ago and there was also the word national team in one sentence together with the name Lauth. :D
 

·
First Place winner, March 2009 Photo Contest
Joined
·
2,968 Posts
Discussion Starter #18 (Edited)
midtable-teams II

Eintracht Frankfurt

Eintracht had a season with ups and downs last year but unlike to prior years, they didn't had any relegation trouble this time and played very solid overall.

On the transfer market, they signed some interesting players like Steinhöfer, Korkmaz and Bellaid. From Schalke, CM Zlatan Bajramovic joined Eintracht on a bosman free transfer. If he manages to stay injury free, he should be a major reinforcement for the team.
With Sotirios Kyrgiakos, the Eintracht only lost 1 starter, all the other players which left the club were more or less benchwarmers.

Eintracht also managed to prolongue the contract of striker Ioannis Amanatidis and CM/defender Chris, two of their best and most important players. Only brazilian midfielder Caio who was signed in the last winter for club record transfer fee is still a cause of problems - he came back from the summer holidays with more than 6 kg of overweight ( indeed a noticable amount for just 4 weeks of vacation... :rollani:) and continues to annoy the Eintracht managing staff...

Coach Funkel and his staff will aim to achieve a better position than in 07/08 for the upcoming season.

players to watch out for
Martin Fenin - can the young and very talented czech striker show his great skills on a regular basis? In the past season the winter signing completely disappeared for about 3 months after scoring 4 goals from the first 2 matches only to find his form back at the end of the season again..

Caio - can Eintrachts record signing get rid of his overweight and finally become a reinforcement for the Eintracht ?

season prediction

Bundesliga : pos. 7-10
Eintracht will play a solid season without relegation trouble again. It won't be enough for one of the top spots though but if Eintracht manages to keep its squad together and even bring in further reinforcements, they may evolve into a UEFA-contender - but not yet this year.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,287 Posts
Great set of previews Rothose, but I am still waiting for a preview of the Bundesliga darlings: Energie Cottbus. How they managed to stay up last season after dragging tail most of the season is the stuff of legends.

Teak
 

·
First Place winner, March 2009 Photo Contest
Joined
·
2,968 Posts
Discussion Starter #20
midtable-teams III

Hertha BSC

Last year, Hertha started a complete overhaul of their squad. New coach (Favre) and about 20 players out and in. The overhaul is continued this year, though compared to last year there are less popular names among the players leaving the club, only brazilian NT midfielder Mineiro and striker misunderstanding Andre Lima are noticable.
Hertha bought 3 more or less unknown brazilians ( CDs Kaka and Rodnei, CM Cicero ), striker talents Chermiti and Domovychiyski joined from tunisian top club Etoile and from Levski Sofia, left back Stein was signed from relegated Rostock.

Herthas aim according to sports director Hoeness is to reach a UEFA-Cup spot. Hertha was granted a shot at the UEFA-Cup already this year because they were top in the Bundesliga fair play table. The UEFA-Cup qualification is still ongoing but it seems to be sure that Hertha will make it.

players to watch out for

Patrik Ebert - can the talented right midfielder make it into the german NT and develop into a leader for Hertha ?

Marko Pantelic - can Herthas top striker justify his giant wage demands ( he asked for 5 Mio € per year to prolongue his contract..) with good performances on the pitch ?

season prediction

Bundesliga : pos. 10-7
(UEFA-Cup : round of last 32)

I find the upcoming Hertha season really hard to predict. They signed players who are more or less completely unknown to me. Favre looks like a decent coach with great tactical awareness and the Hertha squad contains many talented yet inexperienced players. Thus i predict another season with many ups and downs, i don't think that the current squad will already manage a direct qualification for the UEFA-Cup.
 
1 - 20 of 36 Posts
Top