European Leagues 2008/09 Review
European Review 2008/09
There were no major shocks in the English Premier League and Italian Serie A, as champions Manchester United and Inter Milan retained their titles for another year. United finished six points ahead of nearest rivals Liverpool. Chelsea finished three points behind the side from Merseyside and Arsenal finished nine points behind their London rivals. All four teams have qualified for the Champions League season 2009/10, but Arsenal will have to play in the qualifying round.
In Italy, Inter Milan retained the Scudetto finishing ten points ahead of second place Juventus and third place AC Milan. Fiorentina took the final Champions League place, finishing ahead of fifth place Genoa only by having a better head to head record.
Barcelona won the La Liga title nine points ahead of bitter rivals and former champions Real Madrid. Sevilla finished third, a further eight points behind. Real Madrid’s rivals Atletico claimed fourth spot and the last Champions League berth.
There was a shock in Germany as unheralded Wolfsburg clinched their first ever Bundesliga title. The Wolves clinched the title by just two points, with Bavarian giants Bayern Munich finishing second two points behind the champions. Stuttgart clinched the third Champions League spot finishing three points behind Bayern, fourth place Hertha Berlin will have to settle for European League football next season, after finishing just a point behind Stuttgart.
Bordeaux won their first French Ligue 1 in ten years, finishing three points above second place Marseille second and former champions Lyon finishing third six points behind Marseille. All three teams have qualified for the Champions League, Lyon playing in the qualifying round.
In Holland, Louis Van Gaal’s AZ Alkmaar clinched their first Eredivisie title in 28 years, finishing the campaign 11 points clear of second place FC Twente. Twente finished just a point clear of Dutch giants Ajax in third place. AZ and Twente clinch the two Champions League spots, but the Amsterdam giants Ajax will play in the European League next season.