Markus Weinzierl will hope Augsburg's form at the end of 2021 can continue in the second half of the season. - © Sebastian Widmann/Bundesliga/Bundesliga Collection via Getty
Markus Weinzierl will hope Augsburg's form at the end of 2021 can continue in the second half of the season. - © Sebastian Widmann/Bundesliga/Bundesliga Collection via Getty
bundesliga

Augsburg: the 2021/22 season so far

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With just two defeats in their last eight - and a win over Bayern Munich - Augsburg have lifted themselves out of the relegation zone. There is still plenty of work to be done, however, for the likes of Ruben Vargas, Andre Hahn and Reece Oxford in 2022.

bundesliga.com looks back at their first half of the season...

The story so far

With Markus Weinzierl allowed a full run-up to the new campaign - having been drafted in as replacement for Heiko Herrlich in April - memories of the club's incredible 2014/15 season under his tutelage resurfaced. Dreams of renewed European qualification were soon dashed, however, by heavy defeats against Hoffenheim and Bayer Leverkusen. A 1-0 win over Borussia Mönchengladbach was merely a positive blip as three more defeats up to Matchday 9 saw Augsburg plummet to 16th. Since a penalty shoot-out defeat to Bochum in the second round of the DFB Cup, though, Die Fuggerstädter have collected 12 of a possible 24 points. That run included a 2-1 triumph over Bayern as well as a win over Cologne during which Niklas Dorsch got the Bundesliga's Goal of the Month for December.

Watch: Check out Dorsch's strike against Cologne

Key player

Now into his sixth season with Augsburg - with four years at Borussia Mönchengladbach and Hamburg sandwiched in between - Andre Hahn has become the Fuggerstädter's figurehead. Chasing the eight goals and five assists from last term, the attacker still has some catching up to do with two and one in each category respectively this season. Hahn continues to be one of the first names on Weinzierl's teamsheet, however, with the 31-year-old virtually guaranteed to leave the field covered in sweat and battle wounds given his commitment to the cause.

Andre Hahn has been the focal figure of Augsburg for many seasons. - Sebastian Widmann/Bundesliga/Bundesliga Collection via Getty

Best game so far

Augsburg's victory over Bayern on Matchday 12 would rank high on a classification of the club's best games ever. They had beaten Bayern twice before, but those two victories - during Weinzierl's first spell in charge - came after the record champions had already clinched the title. This win, on the other hand, came with Augsburg desperately fighting for points for survival and the league leaders needing them to further their pursuit of a tenth straight title. Mads Pedersen and Hahn supplied two unforgettable goals.

Watch: See how Augsburg beat Bayern 

One to watch

Andi Zeqiri has not only emerged as a first-team regular for Augsburg, but he has also forced his way into the Switzerland national team. Along with club teammate Vargas he helped his country qualify for the 2022 FIFA World Cup ahead of European champions Italy. Zeqiri's return of only two goals this season since joining on loan from Brighton does not do justice to his performances. The 22-year-old's verve, energy and commitment are due greater recognition, and the goals could soon start to flow too.

Andi Zeqiri got his first Bundesliga goal when he scored for Augsburg against Borussia Dortmund in October. - Lars Baron/Getty Images

The view from inside the camp

"With an average of 1.5 points per game over the last eight matches, that's something we can take with us and build upon in the second half of the season." – Head coach Markus Weinzierl.

Key fixtures

Hoffenheim (a) - Matchday 18
Borussia Mönchengladbach (a) - Matchday 22
VfB Stuttgart (a) - Matchday 27

The upturn in form towards the end of 2021 will not shift Augsburg's main focus away from a relegation battle. A winning start to 2022 against Hoffenheim, however, would certainly help to scatter some of the more stoic storm clouds. Augsburg face some tricky away fixtures against sides such as Gladbach and Stuttgart who also intend to pull clear of the drop zone as soon as possible. Weinzierl will hope his side have put enough points in the bank before they end the season at home to Greuther Fürth.

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