- Lewandowski and Aubameyang start where they left off in 2015/16.
- Gladbach show credentials.
- Bundesliga debutants Leipzig make history.
The Bundesliga finally returned at the weekend after a break of 104 days – and boy was it worth the wait!
From a spectacular opening game to impressive new signings and eye-catching goals, there was no shortage of action. bundesliga.com rounds up the five biggest talking points from Matchday 1 of the 2016/17 season…
1) Race for Torjägerkanone off to blistering start
After topping the Bundesliga scoring chart last season with 30 goals, Robert Lewandowski showed he is in no mood to relinquish his crown this term by promptly netting a hat-trick in the season opener in FC Bayern München's 6-0 win over SV Werder Bremen.
Not to be outdone, fellow marksman Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, whose 25 strikes last season put him second behind Lewandowski, then scored two fine goals himself in Borussia Dortmund's 2-1 triumph over 1. FSV Mainz 05, igniting a race for the Torjägerkanone that is sure to provide plenty of excitement as the campaign wears on. The duo have even started a Twitter battle…
@lewy_official wow and the race is started. hat-trick ������— Aubameyang P-E (@Aubameyang7) August 26, 2016
2) Gladbach show mettle in top-four clash
Cast your mind back to this time one year ago: Borussia Mönchengladbach had qualified for the UEFA Champions League but inexplicably went on to lose their first five Bundesliga matches, prompting then-coach Lucien Favre to resign.
Fast-forward to the present day and the outlook is rather different under current boss Andre Schubert. Gladbach are once again in the Champions League, but demonstrated on Matchday 1 that they are a force to be reckoned with in 2016/17 after overcoming fellow European participants Bayer 04 Leverkusen 2-1. Pace, experience, a mean defence and swift, interchanging attacking talents: Gladbach look the real deal this season.
3) Leipzig make history
RB Leipzig captain Dominik Kaiser wrote his name into the record books in the 58th minute of his side's 2-2 draw away to TSG 1899 Hoffenheim on Sunday by becoming the club's first goalscorer in the Bundesliga.
The East German side are the 55th different team to grace the Bundesliga after earning promotion last season, and by no means looked out of their depth at this level. Coach Ralph Hasenhüttl's men played with an emphasis on attack and fired off 23 shots on goal. The other promoted side, last term's Bundesliga 2 champions SC Freiburg, succumbed to a last-minute 2-1 defeat away to Hertha Berlin.
4) One-shot Wood
After scoring 17 goals for Union Berlin in Bundesliga 2 last season it was clear why Hamburger SV snapped up striker Bobby Wood – and the USMNT international instantly repaid their faith in him on Matchday 1.
The 23-year-old made his top-flight debut in the starting XI against FC Ingolstadt 04, but showed no sign of nerves as he scored with his first-ever shot in goal in the Bundesliga to help HSV secure a 1-1 draw. Incidentally, it was also his only effort on goal in the entire match.
5) Hot stuff
Summer may be drawing to a close in Europe but temperatures still soared to over 35 degrees Celsius (95 Fahrenheit) in Germany over the weekend. Yet despite the sweltering heat there was no dip in performance levels – with Leverkusen and Freiburg each collectively covering over 115 kilometres. Regular drinks breaks helped the players recover, while 1. FC Köln even dealt with a thunderstorm interrupting play to overcome SV Darmstadt 98 2-0.