Germany represents one of the ‘big five’ European club football leagues, alongside England, France, Italy and Spain. At the top of the German football pyramid lies the coveted Bundesliga, which was founded in 1963 and is operated by the Deutsche Fußball Liga, known in English as the German Football League.
The German League System
It is a mark of the high regard in which the Bundesliga is held that the league is second only to Spain’s La Liga in the UEFA Coefficients table, meaning that Germany is currently one of only three countries to be awarded four spots for the UEFA Champions League for their teams each year.
The Bundesliga has grown in popularity in recent years, coinciding with the steady decline of Italy’s Serie A. It boasts the highest average match attendance of any top division in Europe, and German football is recognised for its fan-friendly nature. Ticket and food prices are typically kept low and there are special safe standing sections which allow supporters to ramp up the atmosphere on match days with their enthusiastic chanting and singing.
Below the Bundesliga lies the Bundesliga 2, with a direct promotion/relegation system in place. Some English providers offer betting on this second tier, as well as on the domestic knockout competition, the DFB Pokal or German Cup, with limited betting options available on the third tier 3. Liga.
German Clubs And Players
One club presides over all others, both in the history of German football and the Bundesliga. Bayern Munich have taken home 26 league titles, along with 18 national cups. Founded in 1900, Bayern won their first title in 1932 and have not looked back since, claiming the top prize six times in the last decade. They have also won the UEFA Champions League five times, putting them in the elite bracket of European football along with the likes of Real Madrid, AC Milan, Barcelona and Liverpool.
Today Bayern possess many of the brightest German talents, such as star goalkeeper Manuel Neuer, potent striker Thomas Muller and former Germany captain Philipp Lahm, as well as foreign imports such as Arjen Robben, Robert Lewandowski and Xabi Alonso. Bayern will always represent an attractive betting option for those in search of a relatively safe punt, but there are some other Bundesliga teams which are worth a mention.
Borussia Dortmund are arguably the second most important club in German football after Bayern. They have won the Bundesliga eight times, most recently in 2011/2012 and are known for their exciting brand of attacking football which entertains their fans from all over the world, many of whom travel large distances to their Westfalenstadion, the biggest in Germany.
There are many other German teams to keep your eye on in over the season, including 2016/2017’s surprise package, RB Leipzig, who shocked the football world with their march to the top of the table and other occasional contenders including Hoffenheim, Schalke, Bayer Leverkusen and Wolfsburg.
Betting On German Football
Bayern have reached at least the semi-finals of the Champions League for the last five seasons, making them a reliable option for betting on German teams in Europe. They last won the title in 2012/2013 in a final against Bundesliga foes Dortmund in a final played at Wembley Stadium, London. In Europe’s secondary club competition, the Europa League, a German team has not taken top honours since Schalke in 1997 and it should be noted that clubs tend to field lower strength line-ups in order to prioritise the Bundesliga.
You don’t have to go far to bet on German football in the UK, with a whole host of online providers offering Bundesliga, Bundesliga 2 and DFB Pokal betting, including Bet365, SkyBet, Bet Stars, Boyle Sports, Betfred,Sporting Bet, Bet Victor, Paddy Power, William Hill, Coral, Ladbrokes and many more.
BT Sport currently broadcasts live Bundesliga matches in the UK throughout the season, meaning you needn’t scramble around online for a stream in order to watch the likes of Bayern, Dortmund or Leipzig.
As one of the world’s football superpowers, the German club game has upheld a long and proud tradition and is now one of the leading leagues anywhere in the world. Bundesliga betting is available from the first round of the competition in August right through until the final round in May, with a month-long winter break taken around the festive period.
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