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BPW’s Teams of the Season Prologue: How we made our decisions

Welcome to Team of the Season week! Before we start, we’re letting you know how our selection process looked like.

FC Bayern Muenchen v FC Augsburg - Bundesliga Photo by Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images

(This is the prologue to our three-part team of the season series)

In every part of the Bundesliga table, there are quality players. Not every Team of the Season list reflects that. Caught behind players from Bayern Munich, Borussia Dortmund, and other top clubs are some fantastic footballers who deserve their moment in the sun.

That’s what this project is all about. We’re here to take a look at the best players in the whole league in three parts. Firstly, a look at the best players in the bottom four sides. Following that, we take a look at the teams whose seasons weren’t bad, but not great. Finally, we take a holistic approach and look at every team from the league. Every team will have a nomination for each position — allowing us to take a whole look at the whole league.

At the end of our articles revealing our picks, we have one for the readers to fill out! Make your selections, and we will reveal our so-called BPW Fan ToTS for each category.

Before we reveal our picks, we have a few disclaimers. While this makes for a boring article, it makes this easier to reference back to in our other pieces without having to drop the over 600 words into each and every one. We will link back to this article at each new post.

Selection Process

Firstly, we need to talk about two important things: placement and positioning.

In regards to the placement of players at certain points of the list — and especially grouping them with other players — we took two different considerations into account for two specific positions.

When it came to deciding who would be the 1st choice midfielder and the 2nd choice midfielder, we had to take a look at who played farther up the pitch. For example, in Schalke’s squad, we included Amine Harit and Suat Serdar. Due to Serdar’s tendency to play more reserved, he was placed in the conversation for 1st choice midfielder. Often times, when it came to players who were in a system with a flat four across the middle, we put the player with a higher goal total in the 2nd choice. This can be seen with Harit.

As for the second position, that of center back, we purposefully randomized the placement of the players. We didn’t want to have a case where the 1st choice CB was the best players all fighting each other - because in other Teams of the Season, that’s not how the selection works. Therefore, in order to make it more balanced, we randomly placed the players in CB1 and CB2.

Now, to positioning. Multiple teams play multiple formations. Some play three or five in the back, which isn’t always compatible with our 4-2-3-1 system. In many instances, we had to take liberties in putting players in certain positions.

For example, in the Overall ToTS, we placed Daichi Kamada at right wing. We are aware that he plays in central midfield. However, we ran into two problems: 1) Eintracht usually runs with either 3 or 5 in the back, and normally utilizes a right back up that flank. The RB we chose for Frankfurt, Erik Durm, was often up the pitch in a typical RW position, so we chose not to place him here twice. 2) After Durm, Eintracht did not have a player who could reasonably be placed in a ToTS list.

This is just one of many instances on these lists and unless a player clearly played in multiple positions up the pitch during the season (i.e. Gio Reyna playing CAM, LW, RW), we made estimated guesses to fit the format of the list.

That’s all from us for now! Look forward to our team selections beginning next week.

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