Even though they still have a shred of hope in the UEFA Cup, it is no secret that Nuremberg does not have the best soccer players in the German Bundesliga. The best soccer charts, however, do come from Nuremberg. You won’t find them in Nuremberg-based ‘kicker’ magazine, but you will find them here.
|12||Hertha BSC Berlin||17||6||2||9||19:24||-5||20|
|16||1. FC Nürnberg||17||4||3||10||21:28||-7||15|
The inofficial fall championship, the halfway mark of the season prior to the winter break, is an important benchmark in German soccer. Since the beginning of the Bundesliga, 30 of the 44 teams who won the German championship also won the fall championship in the same season. (You surely don’t have to illustrate that using a pie chart.) Whoever wins the first round has a good chance to finish as the winner, too.
This year, Bayern Munich is at the top again. They have already won this honor 15 times – and only missed the championship twice. As the sparklines show, however, their last few matches were rather lethargic. Werder Bremen, on the other hand, played consistently in the past weeks to fight its way to the #2 spot.
Stuttgart’s #8 ranking isn’t necessary a catastrophe either. Although the experts expected that the 2007 German champions would have ranked higher, they are still doing better than one might expect considering the ups and downs of their season.
The first, second and third horizontal lines designate the Champions’ League positions, qualification spots and the UEFA slots respectively, while the fourth marks those teams who are in the relegation zone. All of these figures come from the German Football Association.
In case the editors at kicker are reading this, we made the sparklines using SparkMaker. For the record, it is much cheaper than the disgrace of knowing that I, a true soccer dunce, am offering advice to one of Europe’s leading sports magazines.