Be it Dante or Mario Mandzukic, Bayern Munich are never short of a goalscorer or two
Be it Dante or Mario Mandzukic, Bayern Munich are never short of a goalscorer or two

Chasing the big 500

Munich - Global stars, state-of-the art stadia, financial stability and football fanatics like no other: just a selection of elements that contribute to the Bundesliga being Europe's most progressive league.

Big hitters Bayern

Yet it's not short of on-the-pitch entertainment either this season. 473 goals have found their mark, and that only 18 games into the 2012/13 campaign. So as the Bundesliga braces itself for the big 500, we take a look at some of the teams to have had their say in this season's net-busting goal frenzy.

Bayern Munich have been the big hitters so far, wading in with a hefty 46 goals in their quest for the Bundesliga title. Their star-studded side already boasts 13 different scorers from centre-back Dante (one) right the way through to striker Mario Mandzukic (eleven).

Champions Borussia Dortmund, scorers of the first Bundesliga goal of 2012/13 and Bayern's nearest pursuers in terms of goals scored (40) are pushing hard with ten different squad members adding their name to the statistics pile this season. Then comes second-placed Bayer 04 Leverkusen (36), who have been able to count on ten players chipping in the goals alongside present Bundesliga top scorer Stefan Kießling (13).

Nine-goal spectacular

Fellow top-five members Eintracht Frankfurt (34) and Schalke 04 (32) are unsurprisingly up there with their pace-setting ascendants, but it's high-scoring, goal-shipping Hannover 96 who have had one of the biggest roles to play in the goal-mad spectacle that is this season's Bundesliga.

Few sides go to Schalke's Veltins Arena and score four; even fewer do so and lose. Hannover, though, managed both on Matchday 18 - a fixture that will live long in the memory. A total of nine goals were scored on the night, with eight different players putting their names up in lights and the same number of goals coming in the second half, leaving Hannover even in the goal-difference department with 36 for and 36 against.

Goals guaranteed

So 27 is the number that could take us into 500 territory this coming weekend, but there are two other notable figures to watch out for as the season ticks on. Record champions Bayern are already well on the way to surpassing their own Bundesliga record of 101 goals scored in a single campaign, whilst they and the rest of the top-flight clubs are chipping away at the overall Bundesliga record for goals scored in one season (1,097, 1983/84).

While we may never see an individual reach the dizzy heights of Gerd Müller's 40-goal campaign (1971/72), there is every reason to believe that 2012/13 could turn out to be a record-breaking season in its own right, with each round of fixtures already enjoying a weighty mean of 26.2 goals. Above or below average come Matchday 19, goals are guaranteed: after all, this is the Bundesliga.

Christopher Mayer-Lodge