End of an era for VFB Stuttgart

Germany Bundesliga Soccer

After 41 seasons in the Bundesliga the run for VFB Stuttgart has come to an end they are being relegated to the 2nd Bundesliga.That comes after years of mismanagement and strong warnings that the club could not fend off the decline which has went after winning the Bundesliga title in the 2006-07 season where they won their 5th Bundesliga title and the 1st since 1992.In the 2006-07 season Stuttgart had one of the best squads in the league with Cacau,Khedira,Pardo,Osorio and their star striker Mario Gomez and under coach Armin Veh the club was considered a strong contender for one of the highest places in the league ever since the 1990s generation of Krasimir Balakov,Fredi Bobic and Giovanne Elber were at the club and the 2002-03 squad of Alexander Hleb,Kevin Kuranyi,Andreas Hinkel and Timo Hildebrand.In the 2006-07 season VFB Stuttgart had one of the youngest squads in the Bundesliga and it was considered to challenge for a spot in the UEFA Cup,but Stuttgart’s season started bad with a 0-3 defeat against Nurnberg but as the season went on and with Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund struggling the title race was between Schalke 04 and Stuttgart,and with Schalke dropping points against Arminia Bielefeld and Borussia Dortmund where they lost both matches while Stuttgart making an 8 match unbeaten run which included a 2-0 victory against Bayern Munich,the Swabians sealed the title at the final day on the season after defeating Energie Cottbus 2-1 and brought for the 1st time since the 1991-92 season the Bundesliga title back to Stuttgart.And then the next season the problems started since the club board made a mistake on not buying new players which would keep the club competitive which meant in the next 2007-08 season Stuttgart managed to finish 6th,while Veh himself was fired in the beginning of the 2008-09 season due to a string of bad results which included a 3-0 defeated against Jurgen Klopp’s Borussia Dortmund,4-1 defeat against Wolfsburg and two consecutive defeats Koln and Hamburg in late October and early November.So Markus Babbel was brought in and the Swabians made a strong showing for the rest of the season by finshing at 3rd place with 64 points which was 5 points less than the 1st placed and German champions of the 2008-09 season Wolfsburg.But most of the squad which went to win the Bundesliga in 2007 began to leave the club and the first was the star striker Mario Gomez who left Stuttgart for Bayern Munich,Sami Khedira left right after the World Cup in South Africa for Real Madrid,while Pardo and Osorio returned to Mexico,the only left was Cacau who left in at the end of the 2012-2013 season.Meanwhile the club went through constant coaching changes,ever since the Swabians won the Bundesliga in 2007 eight coaches guided the club which included another stint made by Armin Veh and two stints made by Huub Stevens which was the former coach of Schalke 04 and who saved Stuttgart in the 2014-15 season to be relegated from the Bundesliga.Stuttgart’s awful 2014-15 season was determined by the three last matches of the season where they beat Mainz,Hamburg and on the final day Paderborn in order to be placed 14th and only 2 points above the relegation places.That had to be a strong warning to the club to get more serious and to start more investing in the squad besides that it had players like Martin Harnik,Kevin Grosskreutz and their two star players Daniel Didavi and Daniel Ginczek. But this time there was no Stevens or Veh to save the club from relegation and the warning from the previous season was largely ignored.Stuttgart’s season under coach Alexander Zorniger who signed with the club until the end of the 2017-2018 season began with five consecutive defeats with only four goals scored while 16 conceded that included a 1-4 defeat against Eintracht Frankfurt and the club achieved their 1st victory on matchday 6 when they defeated Hannover 1-3,but after two consecutive 4-0 defeats against Bayern Munich and Augsburg,Zorniger was fired immediately and Jurgen Kramny who was the youth coach of the club was hired to stave off relegation for one more season.Kramny achieved positive results from the beginning of December to mid-February when the Swabians went unbeated in 8 consecutive matches (which included 5 victories),but then Stuttgart’s only victory came against Hoffenheim in the beginning of March where the Swabians beat Hoffenheim 5-1 and the final rounds of the season could be described as a disaster where out of 27 possible points,Stuttgart managed to collect only 2 which where draws against Ingolstadt (3-3) and Darmstadt (2-2) while they were completely routed by Werder Bremen (6-2) and Borussia Dortmund (0-3) and the only shot to somehow achieve a promotion/relegation play-off spot came on the final day on the season against Wolfsburg which was placed 8th in the standings,but there was no miracle this time as the Swabians lost 3-1 and that confirmed relegation to the 2.Bundesliga for the 1st time since the 1974-75 season when in that time finished 16th,but this time they finished 17th and with that ended an era for VFB Stuttgart while it will be hard to get the club back for an immediate promotion next season in the 2.Bundesliga since some the club players like Timo Werner and Filip Kostic might leave the club for greener pastures.

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