Last Season: 15th
Coach: Enrico Maaßen
Squad Valuation: €126.5m
Stadium: WWK Arena (30,660)
The end of last season left a sour taste in the mouth for Augsburg fans as they found themselves sucked into a serious fight against relegation that was only avoided right at the tail end of the season. With only one win from their last eleven matches, the Fuggerstädter found themselves in what is known as ‘squeaky bum time’. Their points tally of just 34 was their third lowest in the past 12 seasons of being in the Bundesliga and a fresh start is going to be needed this year if Enrico Maaßen’s men are not to find themselves in an equally precarious position come the end of the season.
The large influx of players acquired in the January transfer window added definite quality and with six months of settling in behind them, should all be ready to push on this season. However, with the current transfer window still open and not due to close until after the start of the season, the final make-up of the Augsburg squad is still up in the air.
The only major departure thus far has been goalkeeper Rafal Giekiewicz, but the arrival of Finn Dahmen from Mainz has compensated for that. The future of striker Mergim Berisha is the major talking point with Augsburg preparing for bids for their German international. The fact that they only made his loan from Fenerbahce permanent at the end of last season for €4 million won’t stop other clubs coming in for him if there is traction in the transfer window with regards strikers. Should Niclas Füllkrug depart Werder Bremen, expect a bid from the Grün-Weißen. The performance of youngster Arne Engels last season has also attracted a host of potential suitors.
The club have signed both Sven Michel and Philipp Tietz to strengthen the options in the forward line, while defender Patric Pfeiffer has arrived to strengthen the back line.
Augsburg are club that are hard to place when it comes to making season predictions. It is conceivable that they will once again be amongst the sides clambering for points at the end of the season to ensure their survival, but on the other hand they possess enough quality to achieve what both Mainz and Wolfsburg did last season and be pushing for a potential European place.
Major signings: Tim Breithaupt (Karlsruhe), Finn Dahmen (Mainz free), Sven Michel (Union Berlin), Philipp Tietz (Darmstadt), Patric Pfeiffer (Darmstadt), Masaya Okugawa (Arminia Bielefeld)
Major departures: Rafal Giekiewicz (Ankaragucu), Ricardo Pepi (PSV Eindhoven)
Youngster to watch: Arne Engels
The fact that there is already a doubt as to whether FC Augsburg can hold on to 19-year-old Arne Engels just six months after signing him from Belgian side Club Brugge’s youth academy for a mere €100,000 shows just how quickly the youngster has developed and the esteem in which he is held. His market value has already soared to €7.5 million and should he stay at Augsburg for another season, he will most definitely be one to keep an eye on as his star continues to rise.