Cologne relegated to Bundesliga 2 after five years in the top flight


Cologne will play in Germany's second tier next season after their relegation from the Bundesliga was confirmed with a 4-1 defeat by Heidenheim.

Three points behind the relegation play-off spot and five from outright safety heading into Matchday 34, Cologne needed a win against Heidenheim to stand any chance of surviving. However, a 4-1 loss leaves them six adrift of 16th in the season's final standings.

The Billy Goats had been up against in all season long, with 10 defeats across the first 16 matches of the campaign costing head coach Steffen Baumgart his job. Timo Schultz came in with the Rhineland club off the bottom of the table on goal difference, but 17 points from his first 19 games - although a marginal improvement - was not enough to haul them back above the waterline.

Cologne's relegation brings an end to five straight seasons of Bundesliga football at the RhineEnergieStadion. It is their sixth demotion since they were crowned inaugural Bundesliga champions in 1963/64.

Darmstadt were relegated two weeks ago, while Bochum finished 16th and are to face Bundesliga 2's third-placed team in the two-legged relegation play-off