World News 15 Nisan 2024

Bayer Leverkusen win first-ever Bundesliga title - ending Bayern Munich's 11-year run

Bayer Leverkusen win first-ever Bundesliga title – ending Bayern Munich's 11-year run

Bayer Leverkusen have won the German football league for the first time in their history – ending an 11-year run by Bayern Munich.

Coached by former Liverpool midfielder Xabi Alonso, Leverkusen thumped Werder Bremen 5-0 on Sunday, winning the Bundesliga title with ease.

They are 16 points clear of Bayern with five games left to play.

It is the first trophy Leverkusen have lifted since they won the German Cup in 1993.

Bayer Leverkusen win first-ever Bundesliga title - ending Bayern Munich's 11-year run
Image:
Coach Xabi Alonso. Pic: Reuters

Supporters stormed the pitch when they scored their fourth goal with seven minutes to go, while the final moments were played in thick red smoke as players on the bench danced, clapped along to songs and hugged one another.

The final goal – marking a first career hat-trick for German midfielder Florian Wirtz – prompted a larger pitch invasion as the referee ended the game amid ecstatic scenes.

Striker Victor Boniface allayed any early nerves with a first-half penalty, then Swiss international Granit Xhaka hit a long-range shot to make it 2-0 with half an hour to go.

Leverkusen were merciless as Wirtz scored the final three goals in just over 20 minutes.

Bayer Leverkusen win first-ever Bundesliga title - ending Bayern Munich's 11-year run
Image:
The players celebrate winning the title. Pic: Reuters

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The club are on course for a historic treble, holding a lead against West Ham in the Europa League and set to face second-division Kaiserslautern in the German cup final.

They are on a 43-game unbeaten run in all competitions and have extended the longest unbeaten streak in a single Bundesliga season to 29 matches.

Bayer Leverkusen win first-ever Bundesliga title - ending Bayern Munich's 11-year run
Image:
Pic: Reuters

When Alonso, 42, was appointed coach in October 2022, the club were struggling near the foot of the Bundesliga table.

“It is a big success for the club,” he said. “The first time is special for everyone. We can say we were part of this big day for Bayer Leverkusen. It feels great.”

Former Arsenal player Xhaka, who captains Leverkusen, said it was “very, very difficult to find the right words”.

He added: “We did something this year that is more than special. This focus, this mentality to win every game is unbelievable.”

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