Ten years, ten Bundesliga titles. One happy memory after another for ten years. A league title every year to make the Bayern Munich fans of the world happy as a hamster. These ten titles made up a decade for the Bayern faithful to savor.
But how many of those titles were actually secured in front of the home fans? How many times were the titles sealed on the turf of the Allianz Arena? Well, not that many. Six titles were clinched away from home (Frankfurt, Berlin, Ingolstadt, Wolfsburg, Augsburg, Bremen), and two were clinched before Bayern even had to kick a ball. Only two were secured in Munich. It’s funny that only 20 percent of Bayern’s decade of titles were won in their own backyard, maybe that’s what makes them extra special? Let us take a look at how they got there…
Bayern Munich made history by winning their tenth straight Bundesliga title in a row, a new record for Europe’s top five leagues. The Serienmeister Stream is a ten-part stream that covers ten special aspects of that glorious decade-long run. Enjoy!
2018/19 - Matchday 34, 5-1 W vs Eintracht Frankfurt
The 2018/19 season was Bayern’s toughest season in the title-winning decade. Under the helm of Niko Kovač, Bayern languished a lot throughout the Hinrunde, and was considered dead in the title race with a nine-point gap behind leaders Borussia Dortmund. The Bavarians barely made it up to third place at the end of the calendar year. However, a sudden upsurge in the Rückrunde saw Bayern creep up the table, and coupled with a faltering Dortmund, the title race was well and truly back on. Neck and neck the two teams fought, only a couple of points apart, until the stage was set for a final showdown on the final matchday.
Bayern would face Eintracht Frankfurt at home, while Dortmund would visit Borussia Mönchengladbach. Two points ahead, Bayern needed a win to secure the title, but a vastly superior goal difference meant that a draw would also be sufficient. Bayern had beaten Eintracht away from home twice already that season, but shadows of the tragic end of the previous season, also courtesy of Eintracht, meant that no one could take this likely.
In the midst of extremely high hopes and expectations, Matchday 34 kicked off.
Bayern made a great start to the game, Kingsley Coman latching onto a Thomas Müller pass and slotting home from close range after just five minutes. Serge Gnabry also found the back of the net, but found his goal ruled out for offside after a video check. Nevertheless, Bayern went into halftime a goal up, just 45 minutes away from glory.
Five minutes after the restart, however, Frankfurt pulled level. As aforementioned, a draw was enough for Bayern to seal the deal, but maintaining a 1-1 score for 40 more minutes was going to be tough. Thankfully, Bayern didn’t need to, as David Alaba scored only a couple of minutes later to put Bayern back in front. Renato Sanches then scored his first and only Bayern goal to effectively end Frankfurt’s resistance.
The 75,000-strong crowd in the Allianz Arena could now relax and enjoy the remaining half hour of the game, but there was still time for a memorable ending. Departing legends Franck Ribéry and Arjen Robben were subbed on for one last ride in front of their home fans, and boy, did they deliver. Ribéry scored a beauty when he dumbfounded three defenders and chipped the keeper, capping off his last home appearance in style. It was already a near-perfect afternoon in Munich, but Robben made it even better when he also scored his final Bayern goal, and his final goal as a professional footballer.
5-1 up with 12 minutes remaining, Bayern were cruising, and the Allianz Arena was drunk with joy, not to mention thousands of liters of beer. This writer was one of the 75,000 fans in the stadium that lovely day, and it was an absolute dream of a finale. When the referee blew his whistle, the home crowd celebrated a seventh straight league title, the departure of a couple of legacy-shaping legends, and, of course, the end of a very arduous, but ultimately triumphant, Bundesliga season.
This title was the first ever Bundesliga title won at the Allianz Arena, and the first title won at home in over 20 years. What a record.
2021/22 - Matchday 31, 3-1 W vs Borussia Dortmund
This particular season was not as rough as the 18/19 season, but it was still not easy. After a damaging defeat to Villarreal in the Champions League, it was up to Julian Nagelsmann and his men to salvage some much needed pride by winning the tenth straight Bundesliga title.
Bayern only needed two more wins in their next two games to win the league, and they got the first part of that job done with a routine 3-0 win over Arminia Bielefeld. Fate had it that Bayern’s final hurdle in the route to the Bundesliga was none other than second placed Borussia Dortmund. A win against their direct title rivals would put Bayern 12 points ahead with three matchdays to go, ending the title race. A mammoth Klassiker, the first direct major title deciding Klassiker since the 2016 DFB-Pokal Final, was on the line.
The match was also the first Klassiker to welcome back a full house in Munich after the COVID-19 pandemic. A home win against Dortmund to secure the Bundesliga title, there was no bigger stage that season. No excuses could be made anymore. Only a win would be acceptable. But would Bayern be able to get it?
Another strong start to the game saw Bayern get in front in the first quarter of an hour. A corner swung in from Joshua Kimmich was headed back by Leon Goretzka, and a waiting Serge Gnabry controlled it before unleashing a powerful volley into the back of the net.
Gnabry had another goal ruled offside before Bayern doubled their lead, with Thomas Müller providing Robert Lewandowski with a pinpoint pass for the latter to slot home. Halftime came and went with Bayern firmly in the driving seat, looking all but destined for that tenth successive title.
However, Dortmund pulled a goal back from the spot after a clumsy challenge from Kimmich. The visitors started piling on the pressure, but to no avail. Bayern waited patiently for the resurgence to slow down, and about half an hour after Dortmund’s consolation goal, Jamal Musiala secured all three points for Bayern with a tap-in from close range.
The team immediately changed into their new Serienmeister T-shirts and caps before starting to throw beer on each other in front of the home fans. The first Bundesliga title secured in front of the fans in three years was a very special occasion, and no one was letting it go to waste. Bayern had made history, winning ten successive league titles for the first time in the history of Europe’s top five leagues, and what better way to celebrate it than with 75000 home fans? It was a beautiful night, maybe a routine night in terms of Bayern’s long and rich history, but one that will still have a special place in the hearts of many.
Two matchdays later, Bayern lifted the Meisterschale after a thrilling 2-2 draw against VfB Stuttgart, also in front of the Allianz Arena crowd. Home fans just make trophy lifts all the better.