Landslide Wins and Title Tussles: Reflecting on the European Leagues’ 2021-22 Campaigns
And so, the curtain has fallen on another dramatic season of football across Europe. From intense battles for the league title to dogged relegation fights, there has been some real entertainment across the continent’s major leagues which has made football betting online a tricky pursuit.
Now that the dust has settled somewhat, it’s a good time to take a look at each European league and remind ourselves of what unfolded throughout the campaign.
Over the course of the Spanish top-flight campaign, it slowly became clearer and clearer that the title was heading back to Real Madrid. Carlo Ancelotti’s return to the Santiago Bernabéu had brought about a fresh start on the pitch, and with both Barcelona and defending champions Atlético Madrid struggling to produce their best, the title ended up being a cakewalk for Los Blancos.
At the other end of the table, an almighty final day scrap to avoid relegation saw Cadíz dramatically escape the drop at the expense of Granada, who return to the second tier having qualified for the Europa League just a couple of seasons ago. Joining them are Levante and Alavés, who just weren’t up to the required standard.
Real Betis and Real Sociedad earned the Europa League places, whilst Villarreal will have to make do with the Europa Conference League next season despite their sensational run to the semi-finals of the Champions League.
There was a much tighter title race in Serie A, where AC Milan has eventually crowned champions after being pushed all the way by Inter Milan, Napoli, and Juventus. It’s Rossoneri’s first scudetto in 11 years, bringing a close to a turbulent period in the club’s history. With the slight decline of Juventus and the return to the form of Inter and AC Milan, Serie A is suddenly one of the most competitive leagues in Europe.
There was sadly no escape from relegation for the popular Venezia, with Genoa also dropping down to Serie B after a disappointing campaign. Cagliari was the third side to be relegated, after failing to find an all-important winner against Venezia on the final day of the season, which would have kept them up.
City rivals Lazio and Roma both secured their places in next season’s Europa League, while Fiorentina will return to Europe after a five-season absence to take up a spot in the Europa Conference League.
No prizes for guessing which side ruled the roost in the Bundesliga. Bayern Munich made it 10 titles in a row with another stellar campaign, with Borussia Dortmund their closest challengers. Making up the remaining two Champions League places were Bayer Leverkusen and RB Leipzig.
Greuther Fürth and Arminia Bielefeld will drop down to the second tier, whilst Hertha Berlin survived by the skin of their teeth after defeating Hamburg in the two-legged promotion/relegation play-off.
Both Union Berlin and Freiburg enjoyed sensational campaigns, securing their place in next season’s Europa League, whilst Köln will play in the Europa Conference League.
Paris Saint-Germain successfully regained the Ligue 1 title, winning by a cool 15 point-margin over arch-rivals Marseille. Monaco finished third and will take their place in Champions League qualifying, with fourth-place Renne’s qualifying for next season’s Europa League. Nice enjoyed a fine season to finish fifth, securing their passage to the Conference League qualifiers.
At the other end, Bordeaux and Metz suffered relegation, with St-Étienne facing a tricky play-off against Auxerre to maintain their position in the top tier.