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Which German teams will play in 2023-24 European competitions?

Champions League ball
Credit: Janosch Diggelmann

Union Berlin will make their Champions League debut as Bayern once again start the competition in Pot 1.

As the Bundesliga concluded its thrilling 2022/23 season, the top German teams have successfully secured their places in the prestigious European competitions for the upcoming season. Let’s delve into the details and find out which clubs will represent Germany in the UEFA tournaments.

Bayern Munich (UCL Group Stage)

Bayern Munich, led by Thomas Tuchel, demonstrated their dominance yet again by clinching their 11th consecutive Bundesliga title on a dramatic final day of the season. Their hard-fought 2-1 victory against Cologne ensured they pipped their rivals Borussia Dortmund to the championship, guaranteeing their place in the coveted group stage of the UEFA Champions League. With an impressive record of 92 goals scored and 38 conceded, Bayern Munich will undoubtedly lead Germany’s charge into the elite competition.

Borussia Dortmund (UCL Group Stage)

Borussia Dortmund, a perennial force in German football, finished as runners-up in the Bundesliga this season. They secured their qualification for the Champions League for the 12th time in 13 seasons. While their ultimate goal was to bring home the Meisterschale for the first time since 2011/12 under the guidance of Jürgen Klopp, Dortmund’s second-place finish earned them a well-deserved spot in the Champions League group stage. Dortmund will be eager to showcase their attacking prowess and challenge Europe’s best teams.

RB Leipzig (UCL Group Stage)

A rising force in German football, RB Leipzig displayed their mettle by finishing third in the Bundesliga standings. Their consistent performances throughout the season secured their participation in the Champions League for the sixth time in seven seasons. Despite facing some uncertainty a few weeks ago, Leipzig’s four consecutive victories, including crucial wins against Union Berlin and Freiburg, ensured their place among Europe’s elite. To cap off an impressive campaign, they also successfully defended the DFB Cup, further solidifying their status as one of Germany’s elite teams.

Union Berlin (UCL Group Stage)

Union Berlin, a relatively new entrant to the Bundesliga, continued their fairy-tale rise by securing a historic qualification for the UEFA Champions League. Competing in only their fourth season in the top flight, Union Berlin clinched the fourth spot in the league table. Their final-day victory against Werder Bremen sent the Stadion An der Alten Försterei into raptures, as they held off the closest challengers, Freiburg, finishing three points ahead. Union Berlin’s achievement marks a remarkable milestone in their young history and promises exciting European nights for their passionate supporters.

Freiburg (Europa League Group Stage)

Freiburg finished the Bundesliga season in fifth place, securing a place in the next season’s Europa League. Having already qualified for the second-tier competition last season, Freiburg once again showcased their resilience and quality. For a brief period on the final day, they even held the pole position to qualify for the Champions League. However, a 2-1 defeat against Frankfurt dashed their hopes, and they settled for a well-deserved spot in the Europa League group stage. Freiburg will relish the opportunity to test their mettle against formidable European opponents.

Bayer Leverkusen (Europa League group stage)

Bayer Leverkusen, despite facing some challenges towards the end of the season, secured a place in the UEFA Europa League group stage. The team’s hopes of a top-six finish seemed in jeopardy after a loss to local rivals Cologne on Matchday 31. However, a crucial draw against Stuttgart and the help of other results allowed them to enter a final-day tussle for sixth place. Although they suffered a heavy 3-0 defeat to Bochum, Leverkusen’s fate was ultimately sealed by Wolfsburg’s loss to Hertha Berlin. As a result, they can look forward to European nights at the BayArena in the upcoming season.

Eintracht Frankfurt (Europa Conference League play-off round)

Eintracht Frankfurt, despite narrowly missing out on direct qualification for the Europa League group stage, still have the chance to compete in the UEFA Conference League. Their final-day victory against Freiburg propelled them into the seventh position in the Bundesliga. Randal Kolo Muani and Eric Dina Ebimbe were the goal-scoring heroes in that crucial match, ensuring Eintracht Frankfurt’s place in the Europa Conference League play-off round. While they must navigate a two-legged play-off to reach the tournament proper, Frankfurt will be motivated to replicate their success in the Europa League, which they won in the 2021/22 season.