Germany: Play-offs 1/2
(Pen: 5 - 6)
0 - 3
(0 - 3)(0 - 1)
P. Hofmann (18), P. Hofmann (66), K. Stöger (70)
By Rune Gjerulff@runegjerulff

Should the Bundesliga relegation/promotion tie be scrapped?

Since the relegation/promotion tie was reintroduced for the 2008-09 season, the 2. Bundesliga team has only won three times, raising the question of whether the tie should be abolished.

Since the relegation/promotion playoffs were reintroduced for the 2008-09 season, the 2. Bundesliga has only won three times.

Fortuna Düsseldorf were on course for promotion to the 2. Bundesliga after winning the first relegation/promotion playoff match 3-0 away to Bochum, but will remain in the 2. Bundesliga after squandering a three-goal lead and losing on penalties.

Although the way Bochum won the tie this time was special, it's not exactly new to see the Bundesliga team come out on top.

In fact, since the two-legged promotion/relegation tie between the 16th-placed Bundesliga team and the third-placed 2. Bundesliga team was reintroduced in 2008, only three teams from the second division have emerged victorious.

The last time a 2. Bundesliga team won the tie was in 2018/19, when Union Berlin edged Stuttgart on away goals - a rule that was dropped a few years later.

The superiority of the top teams has led to questions about whether the system should be changed to favor 2. Bundesliga teams more.

One possible way to do this would be to play just one game on neutral ground instead of the current two-legged tie with one game at each team's home ground.

Alternatively, the playoff game could be scrapped entirely in favor of a system with three teams relegated and three teams promoted.

All Bundesliga relegation/playoff games since 2008/09:

  • 2008-09: Energie Cottbus (Bundesliga) vs. FC Nürnberg (2. Bundesliga): 0-5
  • 2009-10: FC Nürnberg (Bundesliga) vs. FC Augsburg (2. Bundesliga): 3-0
  • 2010-11: Gladbach (Bundesliga) vs. VfL Bochum (2. Bundesliga): 2-1
  • 2011-12: Hertha BSC (Bundesliga) vs. Fortuna Düsseldorf (2. Bundesliga): 3-4
  • 2012-13: Hoffenheim (Bundesliga) vs. Kaiserslautern (2. Bundesliga): 5-2
  • 2013-14: Hamburger SV (Bundesliga) vs. Greuther Fürth (2. Bundesliga) 1-1
  • 2014-15: Hamburger SV (Bundesliga) vs. Karlsuher SC (2. Bundesliga): 3-2
  • 2015-16: Eintracht Frankfurt (Bundesliga) vs. FC Nürnberg (2. Bundesliga): 2-1
  • 2016-17: Wolfsburg (Bundesliga) vs. Eintracht Braunschweig (2. Bundesliga): 2-0
  • 2017-18: Wolfsburg (Bundesliga) vs. Holstein Kiel (2. Bundesliga): 4-1
  • 2018-19: Stuttgart (Bundesliga) vs. Union Berlin (2. Bundesliga): 2-2
  • 2019-20: Werder Bremen (Bundesliga) vs. FC Heidenheim (2. Bundesliga): 2-2
  • 2020-21: FC Köln (Bundesliga) vs. Holstein Kiel (2. Bundesliga): 5-2
  • 2021-22: Hertha BSC (Bundesliga) vs. Hamburger SV (2. Bundesliga): 2-1
  • 2022-23: Stuttgart (Bundesliga) vs. Hamburger SV (2. Bundesliga): 6-1
  • 2023-24: Bochum (Bundesliga) vs. Fortuna Düsseldorf (2. Bundesliga): 3-3 6-5 on penalties

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