Bundesliga Bottlers

January 14, 2018 | Posted in: Uncategorized

Following a chance remark from ROI Capper about my beloved Spurs being the biggest bottlers in the league (along with Arsenal), I thought it might be interesting to look into which teams have been the biggest bottlers in their respective leagues going back to the start of the 2012/13 season.

I'm going to take a look at one league each week, starting with the Bundesliga.

I initially looked to find the team that had lost the highest percentage of games where they had been favourites but that wasn't really very relevant as we ended up with sides that had only been in the Bundesliga for a short amount of time before crashing out (Greuther Furth lost all 6 games where they were narrow favourites).  So, I switched focus to finding the sides that had lost the highest number of games where they were the favourites pre-match according to the odds provided by the bookmaker (all odds were taken from the outstanding Football-Data).

That gave me the following list:

Hamburg (Bottled 42 games since 2012/13)

Propping up the other teams on our list are Hamburg, now they've been incredibly inconsistent the last few seasons but surprisingly they have been favourites to win a match on 64 occasions.  Unfortunately for them, and their numerous managers, they've failed to live up to expectation, losing 42 (or 65.63%) of those matches.  Of all of the teams on our list, they were the only ones who would have featured regardless of whether this list was compiled by number or percentage.

How Hamburg have managed to stay in the Bundesliga is beyond me, they've hired and fired 6 coaches since 2011 with some changes happening twice in a season.

Eintracht Frankfurt (Bottled 42 games since 2012/13)

In seventh place came  Eintracht Frankfurt.  Promoted to the Bundesliga the season before I set the (admittedly arbitrary) date of the start of the 2012/13 season, Frankfurt have managed to keep their nose fairly clean and stayed away from relegation, even flirting with Europe on occasion.  It's not always been comfortable and they are on their fourth manager since 2012.  The 2015/16 season would not have been particularly hard for Eintracht Frankfurt fans as they needed to win the relegation play-off to retain their Bundesliga place. 

With just 30 expected wins from 72 games where they started as the favourites, they managed to finish ahead of our 8th placed side only by dint of the very poor return of 58.33% of games "bottled".

TSG 1899 Hoffenheim (Bottled 50 games since 2012/13)

TSG 1899 HoffenheimWith an impressive rate of 55.56% of "bottled" matches, TSG 1899 Hoffenheim have somehow managed to lose 50 of the 90 games they have started as favourites.  This side have been bankrolled from the German 5th Division by billionaire Dietmar Hopp who had once been on Hoffenheim's books as a youngster before he found his future lay in software development.

Hoffenheim have been a bit up and down but seem to have stabilised under current coach, the highly rated Julian Nagelsmann.

They may be lacking any established stars of the game but there are a few players you may recognise with ex-Leicester forward Andrekj Kramaric leading the line and Nordtveit and Hübner at the back.

Keep an eye out for young Nadiem Amiri who may be making a move in the summer.

Borussia Mönchengladbach (Bottled 53 games since 2012/13)

Borussia Monchengladbach, football, soccer b monchengladbach, monchengladbachWith just 46.09% of "bottled" games since the start of the 2012 season, Borussia Monchengladbach (goes back, checks spelling, yes that's fine) aren't actually that bad.  Only one other side has a lower "bottled" rate than Mönchengladbach in our top 8.

Some of this may be down to the relative ocnsistency they've had at the top.  They're only on their third manager in the review period and they'll be hoping the current incumbent, Dieter Hecking, fares better than his predecessor, André Schubert, who last slightly longer than a year in the job.

There are some good players in this squad with Christoph Kramer, Matthias Ginter, Thorgan Hazard and Lars Stindl all being players that "bigger" clubs have looked at in the past.

Schalke 04 (Bottled 61 games since 2012/13)

Schalke 04

The fact that Schalke have been rated as the favourites 127 times since 2012/13 stands in their favour.  They've managed to put together a very good young squad of players and they're going to find it very hard to keep this group of players together for the foreseeable future.

Already the vultures are circling with midfielder Leon Goretzka linked with free transfers to every major club in Europe, and Arsenal ( ;-) ).  Expect similar with Max Meyer, Breel Embolo and Larko Pjaca in the coming years.

Another club with a young manager, Domenico Tedesco is building a name for himself at Schalke and he may be wise to leave before things fall apart as his players leave for pastures new.  He'll probably be on a few clubs wish-lists in the summer.

Wolfsburg (Bottled 66 games since 2012/13)

With a "bottled" rate of 55.46%, Wolfsburg have not done themselves any favours in recent years.  They only managed to stay up last season by winning the relegation play-off Braunschweig and although that doesn't look like a fate that will be repeated by "The Wolves" this year, they're certainly not as strong as they were just a couple of seasons ago.

Of course, their progress will have been hit by the speculation that engulfed the club after the Volkswagen controversy.  Although the club was highly unlikely to be sold, clearly budgets have been hit and players have left.

Injuries haven't helped either as players like Paul-Georges Ntep have suffered injuries which have hit their progression.  Blaszczykowski and Camacho are currently out injured and these are two important players for Wolfsburg.

Bayer 04 Leverkusen (Bottled 70 games since 2012/13)

For a club that has consistently been in the top 5since 2009/10, last season will have been viewed as a major disappointment.  With only a 12th placed finish, the club dispensed with the services of Tayfun Korkut (who had only been in the job since March the same year) and appointed Heiko Herrlich.  They're currently back up in 5th place so will look upon that as a wise move.

The club have invested well in players over recent years, knowing when to bring in as well as when to sell players.  They currently have a group of good, young attacking players that they will be hoping to keep together and propel them to glory in later years?  Players like Julian Brandt, Leon Bailey, Karim Bellarabi and Lucas Alario are the kind of players you hope to build a squad around.

It's surprising then that they've lost just under 47% of the games they were expected to win since the 2012/13 season.  More consistency could lead to greater honours for this young side.

Borussia Dortmund (Bottled 71 games since 2012/13)

One of the BIG clubs was always going to be somewhere near the top of this list and the fact that it's Borussia Dortmund just goes to show quite how dominant Bayern Munich have been in recent years.  It also shows that Dortmund can be got at.

At 41.04% of games "bottled", Borussia Dortmund are not in a horrible position, they're just the team that has been put up as the favourite on 173 occasions, 24 more than Bayer Leverkusen and 109 more than Hamburg.

During the recorded period, only one side was the favourite more often.  

In regards to this season, it's not been a whole lot of fun.  Peter Bosz was appointed before the start of the season but results simply weren't good enough and Peter Stöger now sits in the hot seat, maybe for the rest of this season, maybe for longer.

Whatever happens, I think their number of "bottled" games is going to go up and they'll still be top of this particular table at the end of the season.

Shame there's no prize for that!



All stats taken from this article have been sourced from Wikipedia, Transfermarkt.com or Football-Data.  I strongly advise you check out all 3 sites.

Stuart (Admin)


I've drawn on all my experience from working at BetAdvisor & TipsterAcademy in order to get this site built. It's been a challenge but I'm happy to bring it to you for your use.

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