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Bayer Leverkusen Team Profile – Club History, Players, Managers & More

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Bayer Leverkusen, also known as Bayer 04 Leverkusen and simply Leverkusen, is a German professional football club based in North Rhine-Westphalia. Competing in the Bundesliga, the club was founded in July 1904. Despite having never won the German title, Leverkusen is one of the best-known teams in the country. Our guide will cover everything from the current Bayer Leverkusen squad to the Bayer Leverkusen stadium. We will start by discussing the history of Bayer Leverkusen FC. 

Bayer Leverkusen Logo and History Bayer Leverkusen club badge

In operation for almost 120 years, Bayer Leverkusen was previously part of the larger TSV Bayer 04 Leverkusen membership sports club. Bayer 04 Leverkusen Fußball GmbH was formed in 1999. Leverkusen has competed in the top-flight of the German football pyramid since 1979, playing their home matches at the BayArena. The Bayer Leverkusen stadium has a capacity of just over 30,000. 

Red and black have long been the colours associated with the club, with the Leverkusen home shirt featuring both. The club’s nickname is Die Werkself, which translates to “The Company’s Eleven” in English. FC Koln and Borussia Monchengladbach are the main rivals of Leverkusen, with the club also regularly competing in European competitions.

The club’s logo features on the Bayer Leverkusen kit and other memorabilia. The logo features two lions, as well as the date in which the club was established. The logo has changed significantly over the years, with the current design having been in place since 2006. 

The Bayer Leverkusen Kit

The Bayer Leverkusen kit changes annually. However, fans can rest assured that the Bayer Leverkusen home shirt will always be red. Black shorts and socks also generally feature. Meanwhile, the away and third kits are also available, featuring in Leverkusen away matches. The club announced a deal with Castore ahead of the 2022-23 season, with the British sportswear manufacturer having become Leverkusen’s official kit supplier for the next five years. 

Bayern Leverkusen home kit

Honours and Trophies

Bayer Leverkusen FC has not won a great deal of trophies over the years. As 5x Bundesliga runners up, the club is still searching for its first German title. With the likes of Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund to compete with, it appears unlikely that they will be crowned champions anytime soon. Below is a breakdown of Leverkusen’s honours over the years:

German Bundesliga: 

Runners Up – 1996–97, 1998–99, 1999–2000, 2001–02, 2010–11

DFB-Pokal: 

Winners – 1992-93

Runners Up – 2001-02, 2009-09, 2019-20

UEFA Champions League:

Runners Up – 2001-02

UEFA Cup:

Winners – 1987-88

Bayer Leverkusen Betting Odds

Leverkusen have been without a major trophy since 1993, when they won the DFB-Pokal. As a result, they are understandably given long odds to end their wait during the 2022/23 season. The table below shows the odds available surrounding Leverkusen, which come from leading online bookies:

Competition Best Leverkusen Odds Bookmaker
Bundesliga 66/1 logo boylesports
DFB-Pokal Already Eliminated

UEFA Champions League 250/1 888Sport logo
 All prices correct as of 14:30 BST on Tuesday, 30 August 2022.

Bayer Leverkusen Squad 2022

Like most football clubs, the Bayer Leverkusen squad looks different each season. New players are signed, while others depart every transfer window. Below, we take a closer look at the current Bayer Leverkusen squad. Having seen players on board, it will become clearer as to what Leverkusen’s chances of success are this season:

Leverkusen Goalkeepers

  1. Lukas Hradecky (Finland)
  1. Niklas Lomb (Germany)
  2. Andrey Lunyov (Russia)

Leverkusen Defenders

  1. Piero Henrique (Ecuador)
  2. Jonathan Tah (Germany)
  3. Mitchel Bakker (Netherlands)
  4. Odilon Kossouno (Ivory Coast)
  5. Edmond Tapsoba (Burkina Faso)
  6. Daley Sinkgraven (Netherlands)
  7. Timothy Fosu-Mensah (Netherlands)
  8. Jeromie Frimpong (Netherlands)

Leverkusen Midfielders

  1. Kerem Demirbay (Germany)
  2. Nadiem Amiri (Germany)
  3. Charles Aranguiz (Chile)
  4. Adam Hlozek (Czech Republic)
  5. Exequiel Palacios (Argentina)
  6. Florian Wirtz (Germany)
  7. Zidan Sertdemir (Denmark)
  8. Ayman Azhil (Germany)
  9. Joshua Eze (Germany)
  10. Karim Bellarabi (Germany)

Leverkusen Forwards

  1. Paulinho (Brazil)
  2. Sardar Azmoun (Iran)
  3. Patrik Schick (Czech Republic)
  4. Moussa Diaby (France)
  5. Amine Adli (France)

Bayer Leverkusen Player Appearances Table

A number of players have written themselves into Bayer Leverkusen folklore by making hundreds of appearances for the club. Between 1982-1999, German goalkeeper Rüdiger Vollborn put on the Bayer Leverkusen kit a record 486 times. The table below shows the players who make it into the top 10 for Leverkusen appearances:

Rank Player Period Appearances
Rüdiger Vollborn 1982-1999 486
2. Thomas Horster 1977-1991 451
3. Ulf Kirsten 1990-2003 448
4. Stefan Kießling 2006-2018 444
5. Carsten Ramelow 1995-2008 437
6. Simon Rolfes 2005-2015 377
7. Gonzalo Castro 2004-2015 370
8. Bernd Schneider 1999-2009 366
9. Lars Bender 2009-2021 342
10. Jurgen Gelsdorf 1976-1986 315

Bayer Leverkusen Player Top Scorers Table

The Bayer Leverkusen stadium has been home to some of the best strikers in Europe. Many have stuck around for a number of years, scoring a large number of goals during their time. Ulf Kirsten sits at the top of the pile, having banged in a massive 220 goals. 

Meanwhile, before his time with Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester United in the Premier League, Dimitar Berbatov scored almost a century of goals for Leverkusen. The table below shows the top 10 leading goalscorers in Bayer Leverkusen FC history:

Rank Player Period Goals
Ulf Kirsten 1990-2003 220
2. Stefan Kießling 2006-2018 162
3. Dimitar Berbatov 2001-2006 91
4. Herbert Waas 1982-1990 74
5. Christian Schreier 1984-1991 68
6. Cha Bum-Kun 1983-1989 63
7. Paulo Sergio 1993-1997 61
8. Lucas Alario 2017-2022 58
9. Karim Bellarabi 2011-Present 57
10. Kevin Volland 2016-2020 50

Bayer Leverkusen News & Transfers

Leverkusen is a team that rarely spends big in the transfer market. However, there are some signings that stand out in terms of finances. The club is better known for developing young players, before selling them on for a significant profit. Below are the top 10 Bayer Leverkusen signings of all time:

Rank Player Year Signed Club Signed From Reported Fee
Karim Demirbay 2019 Hoffenheim £28.8 million
2. Patrik Schick 2020 AS Roma £23.85 million
3. Odilon Kossounou  2021 Club Brugge £20.7 million
4. Aleksandar Dragovic 2016 Dynamo Kyiv £18.9 million
5. Edmond Tapsabo 2019 Vit. Guimaraes £18.18 million
6. Kevin Volland 2016 Hoffenheim £18 million
7. Lucas Alario 2017 River Plate £17.1 million
8. Paulinho 2018  Vasco de Gama £16.65 million
9. Panagiotis Retsos 2017 Olympiacos £15.75 million
10. Exequiel Palacios 2019 River Plate £15.3 million

Meanwhile, the table below shows Leverkusen’s record departures over the years. Kai Havertz’s transfer to Chelsea is the standout deal, with many others having left Leverkusen for the Premier League too.

Rank Player Year Sold Club Sold To Reported Fee
Kai Havertz 2020 Chelsea £72 million
2. Leon Bailey 2021 Aston Villa £28.8 million
3. Heung-min Son 2015 Tottenham Hotspur £27 million
4. Julian Brandt 2019 Borussia Dortmund £22.5 million
5. Bernd Leno 2018 Arsenal £22.5 million
6. Hakan Calhanoglu 2017 AC Milan £20.97 million
7. Andre Schurrle 2013 Chelsea £19.8 million
8. Kevin Kampl 2017 RB Leipzig £18 million
9. Benjamin Henrichs 2018 AS Monaco £18 million
10. Emerson 2000 AS Roma £16.2 million

Bayer Leverkusen Manager

Gerardo Seoane is the current Bayer Leverkusen manager. The 43-year-old enjoyed a professional career in his native Switzerland, before working his way up at Luzern. It was at Young Boys where Seoane really made his name as a coach, leading them to three consecutive Swiss titles. Seoane replaced Peter Bosz, who left Leverkusen in March 2021. Below is a complete list of all Bayer Leverkusen managers over the years:

  • Franz Strehle (1951-1953)
  • Sepp Kretschmann (1953-1956)
  • Emil Melcher (1956-1957)
  • Edmund Conen (1957-1960)
  • Erich Garske (1960-1962)
  • Fritz Pliska (1962-1965)
  • Theo Kirchberg (1965-1972)
  • Gero Bisanz (1972-1973)
  • Friedhelm Renno (1973-1974)
  • Manfred Rummel (1974-1976)
  • Radoslav Momirski (1976-1976)
  • Willibert Kremer (1976-1981)
  • Gerhard Kentschke (1981-1982)
  • Dettmar Cramer (1982-1985)
  • Erich Ribbeck (1985-1988)
  • Rinus Michels (1988-1989)
  • Jurgen Gelsdorf (1989-1991)
  • Peter Mermann (1991-1991)
  • Reinhard Saftig (1991-1993)
  • Dragoslav Stepanovic (1993-1995)
  • Peter Mermann (1996-1996)
  • Christoph Daum (1996-2000)
  • Berti Vogts (2000-2001)
  • Klaus Toppmoller (2001-2003)
  • Thomas Horster (2003-2003)
  • Klaus Augenthaler (2003-2005)
  • Rudi Voller (2005-2005)
  • Michael Skibbe (2005-2008)
  • Bruno Labbadia (2008-2009)
  • Jupp Heynckes (2009-2011)
  • Robin Dutt (2011-2012)
  • Sascha Lewandowski (2012-2013)
  • Sami Hypia (2013-2014)
  • Sascha Lewandowski (2014-2014)
  • Roger Schmidt (2014-2017)
  • Tayfun Korkut (2017-2017)
  • Heiko Herrlich (2017-2018)
  • Peter Bosz (2018-2021)
  • Hannes Wolf (2021-2021)
  • Gerardo Seoane (2021-Present)

Bayer Leverkusen Stadium

The BayArena is where Leverkusen play their home matches. The stadium was known as the Ulrich Haberland Stadium when it opened in 1958. Since then, the stadium has been renovated twice, in 1997 and 2009. It has a capacity of 30,210 for domestic matches and 29,412 for international games. While not being one of the biggest stadiums in Germany, the BayArena still helps to create an intimidating atmosphere for visiting teams.

Bayern Leverkusen Stadium

Bayer Leverkusen FC Rivalries

Bayer Leverkusen holds rivalries with the likes of Borussia Monchengladbach, FC Koln and Mainz. Meanwhile, the German side has a handful of clubs across Europe that they have a strong association with. Below is a breakdown of Leverkusen’s main rivals.

Bayern Munich vs Bayer Leverkusen

As the biggest team in Germany, many clubs enjoy nothing better than beating Bayern Munich. Unfortunately for fans at the BayArena, Leverkusen wins over Bayern have been few and far between. The table below shows both Bundesliga and DFB-Pokal results between the two over the years:

Competition Bayer Leverkusen Wins Draws Bayern Munich Wins
Bundesliga 5 7 17
DFB-Pokal 1 0 3

Mainz vs Bayer Leverkusen

It takes some 2 ½ hours to travel from Leverkusen to Mainz. However, this has not stopped a significant rivalry developing between the two clubs. Leverkusen has recorded a number of Bundesliga wins over Mainz, while they also came out on top in the only DFB-Pokal encounter between the two:

Competition Bayer Leverkusen Wins Draws Mainz Wins
Bundesliga 15 4 8
DFB-Pokal 1 0 0

Rangers vs Bayer Leverkusen

Leverkusen knocked Rangers out of the Europa League in 2020. The German side won 3-1 at Ibrox, before recording a 1-0 success on home soil. Leverkusen would ultimately be eliminated by Young Boys in the following round. 

Competition Bayer Leverkusen Wins Draws Rangers Wins
Europa League 2 0 0

Celtic vs Bayer Leverkusen

Leverkusen were drawn alongside Scottish giants Celtic in the Europa League Group Stage back in 2021. The two fixtures between the duo saw 9 goals scored, with Leverkusen collecting the maximum six points in the process. They won 3-2 at home, before running out 4-0 winners at Celtic Park.

Competition Bayer Leverkusen Wins Draws Celtic Wins
Europa League 2 0 0

Final Thoughts on Bayer Leverkusen

Leverkusen has long been regarded as one of the leading football clubs in Germany. Despite having never won a Bundesliga title, Leverkusen regularly competes in the Champions League, with the likes of Florian Wirtz, Paulinho and Moussa Diaby giving fans at the BayArena hope for the future. Our guide has covered everything surrounding the club, including the Bayer Leverkusen players and Bayer Leverkusen kit. 

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James is a freelance writer who specialises in the world of sports and iGaming, producing engaging and accurate content for online publications, including news articles, reviews, press releases and social media marketing.