The geniuses who staged Bayer Leverkusen’s and Hannover 96’s seasons must be shivering right now. The football gods have turned the tables against them and the fight for Champions League spots will only be settled next week.
The FC Bayern victory against St. Pauli, the Leverkusen draw and Hannover loss are making it possible for Die Roten to take second place, and its direct qualification for the Champions League, next week. Leverkusen would have to lose, while Bayern would win. Hannover now is guaranteed to finish in fourth place.
If all of this comes together, it will perhaps be sadistic to make fun of Leverkusen, which has been nicknamed Neverkusen before. Bundesliga titles have eluded them, given their traditional lack of mental strength. On the other hand, it would certainly serve the Bundesliga’s interests to have its strongest European contender guaranteed to play at the highest level of competition. For the record, that’s Bayern.
The last week of Bundesliga action could be a cracker. It won’t be the only fight to the finish. In the past, Bayern has had to race to the finish in this league, while being on top of the Champions League. It only shows the quality of its opposition.