THURSDAY 03 JULY 2014: SkyBet have opened the book on the 2015 Bundesliga, installing last year’s top two – Borussia Dortmund and Bayern Munich as 3-1 joint-favourites. Schalke and Leverkusen are at relatively long odds, 16-1. Last year’s 3rd-placed side Mainz are at 33s, with Wolfsburg at 40s.
Kicker! magazine has predicted the final standings. Last year’s positions are in bracket:
1. Bayern Munich (2) | 7. Mainz (3) | 13. Hertha BSC (2*) 2. Dortmund (1) | 8. Hamburg (8) | 14. Hannover (15) 3. Schalke (5) | 9. Suttgart (13) | 15. Hoffenheim (1*) 4. Leverkusen (4) | 10. Gladbach (6) | 16. Nürnberg (14) 5. Werder Bremen (9) | 11. Frankfurt (10) | 17. Düsseldorf (12) 6. Wolfsburg (7) | 12. Freiburg (11) | 18. Augsburg (3*) * 2.Bundesliga 2013-14
Ilkay Gündogan has been rewarded with a three-year extension to his current deal, which was due to run out next summer. The 23 year-old midfielder scored his first international goal for Germany in their 3-1 win over Argentina on Tuesday.
The new deal increases his weekly wage from £30k to £75k with standard additional benefits for appearances, goals scored, and making the Bundesliga team of the year.
Laurent Blanc has returned to club football in France after four years with the national side, and later Genoa, by replacing Co Adriaanse at Saint-Etienne, who walked out of the job after just seven months in charge at Stade Geoffrey-Guichard.
Manchester United have upped their summer spending to £18m with the £10m purchase of 23 year-old centre-back Mateo Musacchino from Villareal. The Argentinian international had been one of the first names on the teamsheet for Villareal for the past four seasons, making 128 appearances.