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10th Feb 2022

New Bundesliga boss open to idea of play-offs to decide winner

Callum Boyle

‘If play-offs can help us, then let’s talk about play-offs’

The new head of the German Football League, Donata Hopfen, has admitted she would be open to the idea of introducing a play-off system to decide the winner of the Bundesliga.

Hopfen was appointed in her role in December would be open to changing the current structure in order to boost the attractiveness of the top-flight

“Of course, the (Bundesliga) would be more attractive if there were more competition at the top,” she told Bild am Sonntag.

“And for me, there are no sacred cows. If play-offs can help us, then let’s talk about play-offs.”

Bayern Munich are well on their way to securing a 10th consecutive Bundesliga title and there are hopes that a play-off format would increase the likelihood of a new name on the trophy.

The likes of Borussia Dortmund and RB Leipzig would be the most open to the idea – given that they are normally Bayern’s closest challengers, but unsurprisingly Bayern boss Julien Nagelsmann has dismissed the notion of introducing them.

The 34-year-old insisted that playing more games across the course of a season will do more bad than good.

“Despite the play-offs, things would technically stay the same,” he said in his press conference last week.

“It’s not like you’d have to pick someone, draft someone or comply with a salary cap or whatever. Even with play-offs, we would still have a good chance to win this.

“I said many times that you have to be cautious that there is not too much sport on TV. Or not more than currently. A demand can become over-saturated if there’s too much of it.

“Football lives from its fans and spectators. That is the emotional side, but also financially, too many games or a model with more games could be more stress for the players, the quality of the games then decreases.

“Ticket prices become too expensive because of too many games. But people don’t want to pay for it anymore because it’s no fun to watch anymore.

“The entire system could suffer from this, so you would have to think carefully. But I am always open to new ideas, expressing my opinion, even though it will not have much influence on what will actually happen.”

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