Football is the number one sport in Germany and their skills are highly regarded around the world. Since 1970, Germany has out-performed England 20 times, in international tournaments. They have reached 17 semi-finals, 12 finals and lifted six trophies. England’s high point remains the two semi-finals defeats on penalties against Germany in the 1990 World Cup and then Euro ‘96.
Germany operated on a league pyramid system, with five regions within the country having their own football association: Northern, Northeastern, Western, Southwestern and Southern German Football Associations, then each of the 16 states have amateur football leagues, being organised by 21 separate associations.
Each of these 21 state associations run a league pyramid starting on levels four to six of the German football league system. The state association of Bavaria starts its pyramid at level four, whereas the top divisions of the state associations of Bremen, Hamburg, Hesse, Middle Rhine, Lower Rhine, Lower Saxony, Schleswig-Holstein and Westphalia sit at level five. The pyramids of the remaining associations of Baden, Berlin, Brandenburg, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Rhineland, Saarland, Saxony, Saxony-Anhalt, South Baden, Southwest, Thuringia and Württemberg commence at level six of the German football league system.
All state associations have full jurisdiction over their own league pyramids; however, the configuration varies in between states. In the past, a league pyramid had a top flight in its Association League known as Verbandsligaas, and several divisions of State League (Landesliga) followed. Over the past 10 years or so, there have been many structural reforms and the historical structure of league formation is now not so clearly divided. Currently, eight of the 21 state associations (Bremen, Hamburg, Hesse, Middle Rhine, Lower Rhine, Lower Saxony, Schleswig-Holstein and Westphalia) have a Premier League, (Oberliga), as their top amateur state division. Some Oberliga’s are followed by a Verbandsliga, where others are directly followed by a Landesliga.
The German Federal League, the Bundesliga is a professional association league and has the highest average stadium attendance in the world. During the 2011-2012 season, it averaged 45,116 fans per game, which was the second highest of any worldwide league, after the NFL (National Football League). It is Germany’s primary football competition, contested by 18 teams. There are two Bundesliga Seasons, which run from August to May and most games are played at the weekends with just a few being played during the week. All of the Bundesliga clubs qualify for the DFB-Pokal (The German Cup in which 64 teams compete) and the winners of the Bundesliga qualify for the DFL-Supercup (a one-off match between the winners of Bundesliga and the winners of DFB-Pokal).
The top five clubs in German football today are Bayern Munich, Borussia Dortmund, Hoffenheim, RassenBallsport Leipzig, Werder Bremen. Bayern Munich stands in number 1 position with 1995 points. Borussia Dortmund follow with 1829, 55 points ahead of the next in line, being Hoffenheim with 1775 points. RassenBallsport Leipzig and Werder Bremen hold 1719 and 1672 points respectively.
On August 5th, this year, Bayern Munich (winners of the Bundesliga championship) will face Borussia Dortmund (winners of DFB-Pokal) in a bid to win the SuperCup trophy. All the sensible money is going on Bayern Munich to win, however, Dortmund has proven on numerous occasions that they are no push over. Therefore, there is the opportunity for shrewd punters to take a chance of the outsiders and hopefully win some cash. Fans and football betting punters alike would have even more fun watching the match!