The most exciting German Bundesliga season in many years is near its end, but there are surely a few more twists and turns yet to come before it gets there. That is true for the title race as well as the fight for European places.
The struggle against relegation is the only less dramatic part of the league this season. But it too has shown some life this past weekend.
Round 31 of 34 took place between last Friday and Sunday, opening on Friday night as FC Augsburg hosted Bayer Leverkusen. The visitors were in complete control of the game, which they ended up winning 4-1, to continue to dream of a return to the Champions League.
Augsburg on the other hand is almost certainly safe from the drop to Bundesliga 2.
On Saturday afternoon, the “mother of all derbies” was on everyone’s mind in Germany. It was not the first time that a loss in the Ruhr Derby potentially cost one of the rivals the league title. But this year, the encounter between Borussia Dortmund and Schalke 04 was one of the most memorable matches in the rivalry’s recent history.
After a breathtaking game with one VAR penalty decision, two red cards and six goals, the Royal Blues went away 4-2 winners.
Meanwhile, RB Leipzig secured its Champions League qualification with a difficult 2-1 victory over SC Freiburg.
Elsewhere, Eintracht Frankfurt showed more signs of imploding near the end of an energy- zapping season with a scoreless draw against Hertha BSC Berlin. They will have to recover ahead of their upcoming Europa League semifinals vs. Chelsea.
Hanover 96 got a rare 1-0 victory over Mainz 05, which is not likely to help them avoid the drop at this point, as Fortuna Düsseldorf defeated Werder Bremen 4-1.
On Saturday evening VfB Stuttgart shocked Borussia Mönchengladbach 1-0 with a goal from Anastasios Donis in the debut for new coach Nico Willig.
On Sunday, VfL Wolfsburg came from behind to beat TSG Hoffenheim 4-1 and add more drama to the race for the European places. Later, 1.FC Nurnberg held Bayern Munich to a 1-1 draw, thus keeping the Bundesliga title race exciting.