Stars such as James Rodriguez (l.) of Bayern Munich show all their talents every weekend in the all-singing, all-dancing Bundesliga. - © © imago
Stars such as James Rodriguez (l.) of Bayern Munich show all their talents every weekend in the all-singing, all-dancing Bundesliga. - © © imago

Five reasons the Bundesliga is the best league in the world

Home to some of the biggest names in the game, a platform for world football's brightest talents and the most fan-friendly division on the planet, there is no place like the Bundesliga.

If you haven't fallen in love with the Bundesliga already, here are five reasons why you should make it your new year's resolution to commit your heart and soul to German football's pioneering top flight...

1) International cast

Pierre-Emerick Aubemeyang, Robert Lewandowski, James Rodriguez, Christian Pulisic - the list is long and distinguished. When the Bundesliga was founded in 1963, only seven of its 300 players were foreigners. Last season, things looked very different, with 49.2 per cent of Bundesliga cast members hailing from outside of Germany.

In the Bundesliga - with its countless non-German title winners and 10-man party of foreign Torschützenkönigen - diversity breeds success.

Watch: You voted Pulisic's brilliant late winner against Hoffenheim as December's Goal of the Month!

2) A regular stream of new stars

Above and beyond all the top-class imports, the Bundesliga also has a knack of producing world-beating homegrown talent: Mario Götze, Thomas Müller and Marco Reus to name but three. Germany's top table is a magnet for the best and a conveyor belt when it comes to rolling out tomorrow's finest. And people wonder why the national side – reigning FIFA World Cup and Confederations Cup champions - performs so consistently well on the big stage.

This season alone, all manner of youngsters have made the Bundesliga stage their own, Schalke's USA international Weston McKennie and 17-year-old Hamburg super talent Jann-Fiete Arp chief among them. Simply put, if you want a glimpse of football's next big thing - domestic or foreign - look to the Bundesliga.

Watch: 2017's rising Bundesliga stars

3) Brightest minds

It is not just on the pitch where youngsters are being given an opportunity to shine. Dugouts are becoming increasingly populated with hungry young coaches, determined to show they can cut it in one of the most competitive leagues in world football. Hoffenheim's Julian Nagelsmann set the trend when he became the youngest full-time head coach in Bundesliga history in February 2016, aged 28, and a further five budding strategists under the age of 40 have taken up the reins since.

Watch: Domenico Tedesco's tactical masterclass at Schalke

4) Well-run clubs

While many clubs across the globe appear to be in heavy debt, in Germany there are strict rules to ensure clubs avoid such scenarios. What's more, unlike their English Premier League counterparts for example, the top-flight sides, underpinned by the '50+1 rule', put their faith in the fans so that those who wear the trousers cannot go on any mad spending sprees that could jeopardise the future of the club. In the Bundesliga, shrewd financial management is the platform for success, and that doesn't necessarily mean spending big.

5) The matchday experience

Another big pull are the terraces. Borussia Dortmund's magnificent Signal Iduna Park, for example, boasts the largest in Europe with enough room for 24,454 bricks in the infamous 'Yellow Wall'. Tickets won't cost you half a week's wages, either, with average prices starting from €12, drawing crowds from all four corners of the world.

Once there, you won't want to leave. Help yourself to a chilled beverage, hearty side and soak up the unrivalled atmosphere.

No wonder the Bundesliga boasts the highest average attendances in Europe - a lofty mean in excess of 40,000.

Watch: Discover the allure of BVB's Signal Iduna Park

Chris Mayer-Lodge

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