June 24th, 2024

Bayer Leverkusen completes unprecedented unbeaten Bundesliga season and Cologne relegated

By Ciarán Fahey, The Associated Press on May 18, 2024.

BERLIN (AP) – League champion Bayer Leverkusen became the first team to complete a Bundesliga season undefeated on Saturday.

Early goals from Victor Boniface and Robert Andrich gave Leverkusen a 2-1 win over Augsburg in their last game of the season.

The win was their 28th in 34 Bundesliga games.

Leverkusen, which won the title in April to end Bayern Munich’s 11-year run, is the first team to complete an unbeaten season in any of Europe’s top five leagues since Juventus in the Italian Serie A in 2011-12.

Leverkusen hasn’t lost a game in any competition all season, a 51-game unbeaten run.

It had a firm grip on Augsburg but Mert Kömür pulled one back in the 62nd minute, prompting Leverkusen coach Xabi Alonso to send on Florian Wirtz and Granit Xhaka, the star players he’d been trying to rest before the Europa League and German Cup finals next week.

Local rival Cologne was relegated. Cologne’s hopes of avoiding the drop evaporated in a 4-1 loss at Heidenheim.

Janik Haberer scored in stoppage time for Union Berlin to clinch survival with a 2-1 win over Freiburg. Union’s win meant Bochum dropped into the relegation playoff place after losing at Werder Bremen 4-1.

Stuttgart finished second at Bayern Munich’s expense with a 4-0 win over Borussia Mönchengladbach, while Bayern slumped to a 4-2 loss at Hoffenheim in Thomas Tuchel’s last game as coach.

Mainz ensured its survival with a 3-1 win at Wolfsburg.

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AP soccer: https://apnews.com/hub/soccer

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