|2||FC Bayern München||27||18||3||6||57||66||–||18||+48|
|3||FC Schalke 04||27||17||2||8||53||60||–||34||+26|
|12||FSV Mainz 05||27||7||9||11||30||39||–||44||-5|
Well, at the top we note that the observation made over many years (since the introduction of the unfair, nonsensical and superfluous three-point rule) that you play for the championship from 2 points per game does not quite add up this season. The reason is a slightly too great superiority of the two top teams. Sure, a few weeks ago it looked like Schalke and Gladbach were also operating in these regions (and even today they’re not far away), now their gap is already so huge that you can hardly expect them to intervene in the match for 1st place (the numbers below, expressed in probabilities, are better than any verbal formulation: the chance is as big as it is; if it were impossible, it would be 0, and it’s not yet that for both blatant outsiders). And Bayern’s good 2 per game are not even enough to cause Dortmund any very serious worries at the moment. Of course, the Munich team points to the remaining direct match, but here, too, the computer and the betting market provide more reliable information (er, who do you rely on more?) as to what the correct distribution of chances is. In any case, the fact is that both are egging each other on in the way of actually scoring a little too much, because both recognise the urgent need, which in many a season, as Bayern were without major competition, was omitted, so that the 2 points per game were sufficient for them. On the other hand, one could also fear the drifting apart of the performance gap that can be observed in England and Spain. Of course, a certain tension would remain in the title fight even if, like Real and Barca in Spain, it were Bayern and Dortmund here for years. Nevertheless, I think the spectator feels more pleasure when there are more open races for a long time.
At the bottom of the table – and this was really announced with some conviction – things are inching closer together. Kaiserslautern, of course, are falling away at the moment and (as the odds put it below) might already be too far behind, but the rest are consistently scoring. As you can see, the formula I mentioned works very well here: 1 point per game is too few, because Hertha only have 26 in 27 games, and thus stand at 17. Above that, a few teams have 27 in 27 or 28 in 27, i.e. exactly one per game or just above that. This puts them in danger of relegation and they could end up in a place below with every bad one against a good one.