Bayern Munich clinch seventh successive Bundesliga title
Bayern Munich have been crowned Bundesliga champions for a record seventh successive year thanks to a 5-1 win over Eintracht Frankfurt on Saturday.
The Bavarians had to wait until the final match of the season to retain their crown, but they got the job done by running out easy victors at the Allianz Arena to remain two points clear of Borussia Dortmund, who beat Borussia Monchengladbach 2-0.
Kingsley Coman settled Bayern's nerves with an early opener, and although a fortuitous Sebastien Haller equaliser just after half-time made things interesting, the champions ultimately cruised.
David Alaba and Renato Sanches put Bayern back in control, before Franck Ribery and Arjen Robben – making their final appearances for the club – fittingly wrapped up a comprehensive victory.
It was written! Robben makes it fivepic.twitter.com/HNaEbphWs7— Bundesliga English (@Bundesliga_EN) May 18, 2019
It has not all been plain sailing for Bayern, however, as they endured a troubled first half of the season, which was impacted by a couple of difficult runs to leave new coach Niko Kovac under pressure.
At the end of September, they picked up just a single point from three matches against Augsburg, Hertha Berlin and Gladbach.
They then managed only two points from clashes with Freiburg, Fortuna Dusseldorf and Dortmund, with the latter sitting pretty at the top of the table.
For several months Dortmund looked destined to end Bayern's recent domination of the Bundesliga, but Kovac's men responded brilliantly after the turn of the year, losing just one of their 17 league matches in 2019.
Among that run was an emphatic 5-0 win over Dortmund at the Allianz Arena in early April that saw Bayern usurp their rivals at the summit and they have looked in charge ever since.
Die Roten have certainly been aided by Dortmund's inconsistency with Lucien Favre's men dropping points on seven different occasions in 2019.
And there has been plenty of debate about whether Kovac is the right man to lead the club, with neither CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge nor president Uli Hoeness doing much to calm media reports claiming Bayern may opt to change coach at the end of the season.
Bayern's disappointing Champions League campaign has contributed to the speculation, as they were comfortably eliminated 3-1 on aggregate by Liverpool in the last 16.
Nevertheless, title success allows club greats Ribery and Robben to depart on a high, with Bayern set for a busy summer.
The club have been linked with several talented young players as they look to refresh the squad, while deals for World Cup-winners Benjamin Pavard and Lucas Hernandez have already been sealed.
Bayern could yet clinch a domestic double, as they will face RB Leipzig in the DFB-Pokal final on May 25.
Frankfurt went into Saturday with a chance of clinching a spot in the Champions League, but Bayer Leverkusen ultimately claimed fourth thanks to an impressive 5-1 win away to Hertha Berlin and will join Bayern, Dortmund and Leipzig in the competition next term.