A club record 34 points, second place and a berth in the last 32 of the UEFA Europa League, not to mention a six-point cushion over third-placed Bayer 04 Leverkusen saw the Lower Saxony club exceed even their own expectations in the first four months of the campaign.
Although they were the fourth strongest team in the second half of the 2013/14 season - snatching a place in the Europa League - despite strengthening their squad further in the summer, coach Dieter Hecking did not want to raise the expectation levels too high. "We're under construction," he said. "Our mid-term aim is to establish ourselves among the leading pack," added sporting director Klaus Allofs.
The Wolfpack have already taken their place among the elite and the second half of the season will see if they can establish their place at the top. 11 points is the deficit on league leaders Bayern, but they have the strength in depth at least to fight their corner in 2015. "We've got two or three alternatives for every position, but Bayern are still in a league of their own," said Allofs (pictured).
- Wolfsburg's defenders are the most prolific in the league with 10 goals, thanks in no small part to , who has netted five.
- With 11 goals from set pieces, no other side has been so dangerous from dead-ball situations.
- Only one goal has been conceded on the counter-attack – fewer than any other side.
- Only Gladbach failed to take more of their clear-cut chances (19) than Wolfsburg (17).
- Wolfsburg's forwards may have been good at scoring, but they did not provide a single assist all season.
- Wolfsburg have conceded four goals from crosses – more than any other team.
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Thanks to all the VfL fans for your amazing support - the best first half of a season in the club's history! pic.twitter.com/35C2jWJhoX— VfL Wolfsburg EN (@VfLWolfsburg_EN) December 21, 2014
Kevin De Bruyne further enhanced his already glowing reputation from his time spent with SV Werder Bremen, with his second coming in the Bundesliga proving to be a real hit. Not only did Belgium's FIFA World Cup hero provide the most assists league-wide (ten – four more than his nearest rivals), he also found the back of the net three times, exalting himself in a fearsome Wolfsburg front line.
"Since we're now second in the table, of course we've got to go for it – we'd be stupid to say we have any other objective."
- Klaus Allofs after the win against Köln on Matchday 17
Matchday 4: VfL Wolfsburg 4-1 Bayer 04 Leverkusen
Thanks to a sensational performance from Ricardo Rodriguez, who scored two, the Wolves dictated the game from start to finish, showing a level of dominance rarely seen before from a side who had not won all season until then. A fortnight later, they started a run of six straight wins.
It's not just Wolfsburg looking forward to their 30 January encounter with FC Bayern München. The battle between the top two will raise the curtain on the second half of the season and indicate whether the Wolves can maintain the pressure on the league leaders or congratulate them prematurely on the title. Hitting the ground running will be crucial to a side who can also have a role to play in the destiny of the Europa League title in 2015.