Bayer Leverkusen: Reiner Calmund sets qualification for the Champions League as a goal
Bundesliga preview of FOCUS Online: Bayer Leverkusen: Reiner Calmund sets the Champions League qualifier as the goal
The 57th Bundesliga season starts and for a long time the championship fight before the season was not as close as this year. Many teams have strengthened and want to overthrow Bayern. FOCUS Online looks with selected club experts on the new football year.
Hardly any name in German football is so closely linked to Bayer Leverkusen as Reiner Calmund, from 1976 to 2004 he worked for the Werkself. Today, the 70-year-old works as an expert, presenter and author. With FOCUS Online he looks into the glass ball for the new season. Does Bayer have a better squad than last season? And can the Werkself help shape the fight for the championship?
Is the team better positioned than last season?
Reiner Calmund: It is no secret that with Julian Brandt only a real star player has left Bayer 04, also went to Dominik Kohr as valuable complementary player to concord. On the other side are with Moussa Diaby, Daley Sinkgraven, Kerem Demirbay and Nadiem Amiri four newcomers - all with ambitions on a regular place. With spending well over 60 million euros, it is therefore almost logical that the team should be better positioned.
Where threatens unrest?
Reiner Calmund: There are two reasons. Bayer 04 have a squad with over 20 top players, but in the normal case very good players have to sit in the stands. Of course, the objective of Champions League qualifying also involves risks as soon as it is not running. Already in the past season, after three defeats in a row, one has felt a tense mood. Otherwise, the team is intact, the players have known each other in part for years and Peter Bosz can quit the one or the other little fire with his calm, objective and sovereign kind.
You should pay attention to these players?
Reiner Calmund: Kerem Demirbay is the king of the transfer of 32 million euros, probably the largest advance laurels. He is to lead the team as a leading player and performer next to Kai Havertz on the road to success. The talents Paulinho and Diaby trumped in the preparation, both will definitely come to missions and could then provide surprises.
Can coach Peter Bosz bring consistency into the performance?
Reiner Calmund: The conditions are met - the transfers were matched to Bosz's system, he has a squad that can play a good role both quantitatively and qualitatively in three competitions. In the winter break, Peter Bosz took Bayer 04 into ninth place with 24 points. At the end of the season, he finished fourth with 58 points, which qualified his team for participation in the Champions League. More is not possible.
What role does the club play in the championship race?
Reiner Calmund: Of course I would like to celebrate a German championship with Bayer 04 Leverkusen in my old days, especially as we have unfortunately failed a few times during my active time. Realistically, the chance is only 5 to 10 percent, Bayern and BVB are in the top and width just too strong.
What is European in it?
Reiner Calmund: That should be a difficult undertaking despite all the euphoria. Due to the UEFA club coefficient, Bayer are in the European pot of 3 in the Champions League draw, making the knockout stages much more difficult to reach. Nevertheless, the team is good enough for positive surprises, I keep my fingers crossed and hope for a bit of luck.
Where does the club end up at the end of the season?
Reiner Calmund: Since a perfect season is just wishful thinking and things always happen that you can not plan, such as injuries or bad luck on the pitch, I think it is Rudi Völler: The Champions League is the main goal. Rank 3 to 4 is definitely possible for the squad in a national comparison.
The next Bundesliga starter: You should definitely know these three names