Welcome to Part Three of my save with Dynamo Dresden the former 8 time East German Champions who since the unification of Germany have found themselves in the second and third tiers of the German pyramid. If this is the first time of visiting this series you can check both by clicking here on Part One and Part Two.
A quick recap before we get in to the update. Michael Stûbner is my fictional manager for the save and he has decided that he will be using an analytical approach to recruitment which comes in to it’s own after a first full season of data is available. Stûbner originally signed a one year contract but by the winter break the Dynamo board offered a two year contract extension this no doubt due to the teams performance in the first half of the season with Stûbner leading Dynamo to third place in the table which is the promotion playoff spot which so far exceeds the boards vision of a mid table finish. In fact the boards five year vision is to establish the club as a mid table Bundesliga 2 club. Stûbner though feels he can take the club further than the boards expectation by sticking to a financial system whilst recruiting prudently using data alongside a scouting network that is set up to foremost scout youth to identify potential allowing us to recruit potential talent early.
We had four friendly matches arranged during the Winter Break in January with the first one away to Hansa Rostock who are currently in 3.Liga. I just wanted to use the games to keep our momentum going and we did just that running out 2-0 winners against Rostock before beating Mainz 05 in Dresden by 5 goals to two before beating Hannover 96 II 3-0 on the road, (not literally on the road) but away. A good test in our final warm up game against Danish Champions FC København in the Rudolf-Harbig Stadion which we won 4-2 to end a pretty decent run of warm up games.
So back to competitive football and Matchday 19 at the Rudolf-Harbig Stadion pitted us against a struggling Karlsruhe side who find themselves at the wrong end of the table and facing a relegation battle. We spurred no mercy on our visitors totally dominating a game that flatters the visitors with a 2-0 win to us with first half goals from Matthäus Tafererner and Sascha Horvath both on target.
The month of February kicked off with a win when we beat 1.FC Heidenheim in the Voith-Arena 2-1 with two early goals from Moussa Konè and Mattháus Tafererner with the Austrian Midfielder getting his 2nd goal in 2 games.
Another solid performance on Matchday 21 saw us gain another three points by beating Darmstadt 98 by a 3-0 scoreline with goals courtesy of Patrick Möschi, Alexander Jeremejeff and Baris Atik which keeps us in 3rd position in the table and in firmly sat in the Promotion Play Off spot.
Matchday 22 and what you would probably have expected us to have at least got a point when we travelled to bottom club FC St.Pauli at the atmospheric Millerntor Stadion but the bottom club from the St.Pauli district of Hamburg inflicted a well deserved 1-3 defeat upon us with only a consolation goal from Alexander Jeremejeff being the only positive that we could take from the game.
We did end the month on a positive note with a 3-0 home win against Vfl Bochum and a much improved performance than our last outing with three good goals coming from Kevin Ehlers and double strike from the impressive Moussa Koné earning us the three points that keeps us in 3rd place 6 points ahead of 1.FC Heidenheim and 3 points behind 2nd placed HSV Hamburg.
Bundesliga 2 Table 🇩🇪
With the turn of March we are most definitely over achieving and in the mix for a promotion push with the board being extremely pleased with our performance so far this season. So to Matchday 24 we visited 5th placed Jahn Regensburg who looked like holding us to a draw until Moussa Koné secured a 1-0 win for us with a super strike in the 89th minute.
Niklas Kreuzer and Chris Lówe got the goals to give us another three points in a 2-0 win against our big rivals Erzgebirge Aue who had beaten us in the reverse fixture earlier in the season so it was a satisfying result for all concerned in Dresden not least our supporters.
Matchday 26 took us to the HDI Arena in Hannover to play 6th placed Hannover 96 who deserved their win against us after totally outplaying us to put a dent in our automatic promotion push with a 2-0 win inspired by midfielder Phillip Ochs who ran the show.
Bundesliga 2 top scorer Alexander Jeremejeff shot us in to 2nd place and an automatic playoff spot with a fabulous performance that saw the Swede 🇸🇪 score a superb hat-trick to give us a 3-0 win against mid table SpVgg Greuther Fürth to round the month off in style.
We are just 1 point ahead of third placed HSV with just 7 games to go until the end of the season.
Bundesliga 2 Table 🇩🇪
A big month in our recent history started with us getting all three points with a 1-0 win in Bielefeld against Arminia Bielefeld through a 68th minute Alexander Jeremejeff goal. The fans are starting to believe in our push for promotion with the Social Media boards full of optimism.
Matchday 29 and we host League leaders VfB Stuttgart in packed Rudolf Harbig Stadion and get off to a great start when loanee Dzenis Burnic gave us a 19th minute lead but the League leaders hit back with an equaliser just before the break to send both teams in level. The second half starts with us having three quick fire chances but to no avail and as the game ticks on I start to get that FM feeling that we have all experienced going in to the final third of a game against the leaders but Dzenis Burnic only goes and hits a drive beyond the Stuttgart keeper to give us a 2-1 win in the 82nd minute that sends the Dresden skys alight with flares from the celebrating Dynamo faithful who know that the result is a big one.
We are on a roll and a 3-0 win follows this time when we visit Wiesbaden who have no answer to our flowing football and goals from Linus Wahlqvist, Moussa Koné and Alexander Jeremejeff to guarantee at least a 3rd placed finish that ensures the Promotion Playoff at the very least.
The Rudolf-Harbig stadium looked a picture on Matchday 31 with us hosting 3rd placed HSV Hamburg who come in to the game 4 points behind us in the automatic promotion place and the Dynamo supporters turned out in force knowing that a victory would put us 7 points clear with just 3 games to play. We lined up with what I consider to be close to our best Xl and get off to a good start when Moussa Koné is tripped in the area leaving Chris Lówe to dispatch the resulting penalty in the 25th minute. They say you are most vulnerable straight after scoring and that rung true tonight when just one minute after taking the lead HSV hit back with a goal of their own. The teams go in at the break all level at 1-1.
The second half is no sooner underway when we break free with Sascha Horvath beating the offside flag to cut outside then inside the HSV right back to then release Brian Hamalainen to round the keeper and put us 2-1 up in front of the Dynamo supporters. HSV have no answer this time though and after Jeremejeff hits a post Jannis Nikolaou makes it a 3-1 win that sends the Dynamo faithful home full of joy knowing that we need 3 points from 3 games to clinch Promotion.
Bundesliga 2 Table 🇩🇪
A team meeting before the opening game of the month gives the squad a good boost ahead of the Matchday 32 away day against Holstein Kiel who are fighting for survival at the wrong end of the table and fight is exactly what they did with a resilient performance but Moussa Koné broke the deadlock with just 11 minutes of normal time remaing. Its tense but we are compact in two banks of four that see’s the game out with the referee’s whistle bringing the game to an end. We have only gone and got ourselves Promoted……….. yes we are heading to the Bundesliga, what a season and we also get the news that Stuttgart have failed to get anything from their game at Hannover 96 meaning that not only have we got Promotion we are now firmly in a title race with 2 games to go.
The media are going mental we are on the way to the Bundesliga but we also have the chance to win the title if Stuttgart slip up but I am not interested in their games I need us to concentrate on our own remaining games with the first one away to 2nd bottom club SV Sandhausen who despite us getting two second half goals through Alexander Jeremejeff hold us to a 2-2 draw but to make matters worse Stuttgart have drawn at Bochum meaning we go in to the final game of the season on level points with Stuttgart with an inferior goal difference of just 1.
Matchday 38 we welcome Osnabruck at a sold out Rudolf-Harbig Stadion whilst Stuttgart host Mainz 05 in the Mercedes Benz Arena. I have to play this game in its entirety whilst now having one eye on precidings in the South West by having the latest updates tab open.
In the 20th minute we go to the top of the table when Kevin Ehlers heads us in to the lead that eventually takes us in to the break 1-0 up and sitting pretty at the top whilst Stuttgart are being held 0-0 at the break. Things change though early in the 2nd half when we are sloppy at the back failing to get the ball clear allowing Osnabruck to equalise, 1-1 and we drop back in to second place on goal difference but then Stuttgart break the deadlock in the 78th minute but back in Dresden Alexander Jeremejeff puts us 2-1 up in the 79th minute which turns out to be the winning goal. All eyes are on Stuttgart with us needing a Mainz equaliser that would give us the title but it wasn’t to be and Stuttgart get a second to secure the title on goal difference.
I can’t pretend to be disappointed in not winning the title but in the end we were predicted to finish mid table and we exceeded ourselves finishing in 2nd place on goal difference and gaining Promotion…..
Bundesliga 2 Final Table 🇩🇪
Bundesliga 2 Player Stats
Player Of The Season
Alexander Jeremejeff 🇸🇪 was voted Dynamo’s Player Of The Season at the end of season awards evening. It came as no surprise after his 23 goals was a big factor in the clubs promotion to the Bundesliga. Jeremejeff won the hearts of the Dynamo faithful on Matchday 10 with a four goal haul in our 5-1 win against SpVgg Greuther Fürth. Jeremejeff also led the way at the club for the highest average rating of 7.40 and most man of the match awards with 8. The Swedish Forward certainly had a very good debut season at the club and deserves a chance to lead our line in the Bundesliga next season.
An incredible season for us with many highlights including wins against the two favourites for the title in Stuttgart and HSV Hamburg. I really enjoyed playing with two centre forwards in tandem in our two 4-4-2 variations. The save itself is well ahead of my released blog posts which is pretty good because I have plenty of material to keep me going whilst I am out and about.
I have made a commitment to analysing data for our recruitment with the goal of recruiting in undervalued markets which is a really interesting concept that I feel adds to the save. My next blog post will cover our Pre-Season signings ahead of the Bundesliga season which I can confirm that we are favourites to finish rock bottom of the table.
Thank you for reading and following my journey with Dynamo Dresden and I hope you will continue to follow as I attempt to keep the club in the Bundesliga.