BERLIN, Germany – Robert Lewandowski is leaving the Bundesliga is undoubtedly excellent news for the other league’s goal scorers.
The highly desired “cannon,” an artillery-shaped prize presented annually to the greatest scorer in Germany’s division, is once again up for grabs.
Lewandowski had a firm hold on the trophy after winning it the previous five times. Before deciding to move to Barcelona in the winter, the Poland star scored 35 league goals for Bayern Munich. The season before, he broke Gerd Müller’s previous league-record 41 goals. Lewandowski finished as the top scorer in 2014 and 2016 while playing for Borussia Dortmund, and he went on to win the cannon seven times in total.
Erling Haaland may have battled Lewandowski for the title, but the Norwegian is now with Manchester City, where he will support Pep Guardiola’s squad in their quest to eventually win the Champions League.
However, there are still a number of players who could make an impact this year, including Germany forward Timo Werner, who recently returned to Leipzig from Chelsea, and Anthony Modeste, who Borussia Dortmund signed to fill in for the injured Sébastien Haller. Last year, Modeste led Cologne in scoring with 20 goals. On Friday, Dortmund plays Freiburg.
Patrik Schick of Bayer Leverkusen scored 24, placing him second in the charts after Lewandowski. The Czech Republic forward signed a new contract with Leverkusen to continue until 2027, despite being a target for other clubs.
Christopher Nkunku of Leipzig scored 20 goals last year and is off to a good start this year after netting the lone goal for his team in the 1-1 draw at Stuttgart last weekend. Additionally, despite rumors of interest from other clubs, he extended his deal.
Technical director Christopher Vivell stated, “We’re thrilled and happy that we could maintain one of the best players in the world at the moment in Leipzig.
Jordan Pefok, a forward from the United States, scored for Union Berlin in his Bundesliga debut last weekend. In his first German Cup game, he also scored. Pefok, who has one goal in nine appearances for the United States and was the leading scorer in the Swiss league with 22 last season, suits Union’s style of play perfectly.
Four times, Simon Terodde led all scorers in the second division. Terodde hopes to maintain his success in the top league after leading Schalke gain promotion last season with 30 goals.
Other forwards to keep an eye on include Saa Kalajdi at Stuttgart, if he decides to stay despite rumored Manchester United interest, Randal Kolo Muani, a new signing for Eintracht Frankfurt who scored on his debut against Bayern Munich, and Portugal forward André Silva at Leipzig, where he hasn’t yet found a home after moving there from Frankfurt in 2021.
Then there is Bayern, which will play host to Wolfsburg on Sunday.
In order to help make up for Lewandowski’s departure, Sadio Mané was brought in from Liverpool. But since the Senegal forward is a different kind of athlete, it is unlikely that he will match the Pole’s ability to score goals.
Mané nevertheless scored in his debut last weekend. Bayern thrashed Eintracht Frankfurt 6-1, with no help from a certain ex-player, as Jamal Musiala scored twice and Joshua Kimmich, Benjamin Pavard, and Serge Gnabry also scored.
Bayern consented to pay Rennes up to close to $30 million for French teen Mathys Tel. Although Tel, 17, failed to score in nine games for Rennes, Bayern is confident that he has the potential to become a future star.
Soon, Mané is more likely than Tel to contend for the top-scorer position. In 262 Premier League games, where he frequently played on the wing, the Senegal great scored 111 goals. He scored 19 goals in 29 games when playing as a No. 9 for Liverpool, an encouraging total given the amount of help Bayern’s attacking lineup will give him.
Only one—Luca Toni of Bayern, an Italian forward—was able to win the cannon in his inaugural season in the Bundesliga, scoring 24 goals in 2007–08.
Mané stands a chance of succeeding second. There will be many more high-scoring rounds after the season started with 33 goals over nine games last weekend.