Rudi Völler appointed Germany coach
Bayer 04 play a key role in replacing the Germany coach. After Germany's miserable performance at the European Championships in Holland and Belgium and the departure of Erich Ribbeck, Bayer team manager Rudi Völler is presented as the new head coach for Germany. Völler due to be imposed to 30 June 2001 after which Bayer coach Christoph Daum is to become national coach for Germany.
Hans-Peter Lehnhoff in a new role
After 237 Bundesliga games and 250 league games for Royal Antwerp in the Belgian league Hans-Peter Lehnhoff hangs up his football boots and becomes team liaison manager at Bayer 04.
Reunion with Real Madrid
Bayer end up in a tough group in the Champions League: Real Madrid, Sporting Lisbon and Spartak Moscow are the opponents in the group stage. Bayer score five goals in two games against Real but end up losing both games (2-3, 3-5) and are unable to qualify for the second group stage.
Christoph Daum resigns
On the evening before the Bundesliga home game against Borussia Dortmund on 21 October Christoph Daum announces his resignation as coach of Bayer 04 – the reason for this move are the results of their hair analysis that the Institute for Forensic Medicine at the University of Cologne gave to Daum on 20 October. In discussion with the DFB, Rudi Völler declared he was ready to take over the team until further notice. His debut was a success with Bayer 04 winning 2-0 against Dortmund.
Rudi remains unbeaten
In the six matches under interim coach Rudi Völler, Bayer 04 not only remain unbeaten but also do not concede any goals. Four wins, two draws, five goals for and none against is Rudi's record.
Berti Vogts arrives
In the middle of November Bayer 04 present Berti Vogts as the new head coach. The former Germany coach also celebrates a successful debut winning 3-1 with his team at Hamburg SV and on matchday 13 Bayer 04 of the top of the table.
In addition to Vogts, Wolfgang Rolff, Harald ‘Toni’ Schumacher and Pierre Littbarski are brought in as assistant coaches. And the team is strengthened in the winter break with the addition three top players: The Brazilian Lucio, the Argentinian Diego Placente and the Bulgarian Dimitar Berbatov start at Leverkusen.
Exit from UEFA Cup
Bayer 04 lose out 6-4 on aggregate to AEK Athens in the third round of the UEFA Cup. In contrast, Bayer 04 are hard on the heels of Bayern for a long time. On matchday 26 they are three points behind the league leaders
International at BayArena
Germany play an international at Leverkusen for the fourth time this 1991 (4-0 against Luxembourg), 1995 and 1996 (6-1 against Moldova each time). And the fourth game also produces a victory with a 2-1 win against Albania in a World Cup qualifier
Bernd Schneider scores from 50 yards out
What a goal! Bernd Schuster Bernd Schuster succeeded with a similar thing against Frankfurt in 1994. On 17 March 2001 Bernd Schneider beat the Dortmund keeper Jens Lehmann with a lob from a good 50 yards out. Bayer win this match at the Westfalen Stadium 3-1 and Schneider's goal voted goal of the month on the ARD Sportschau.
Bayer falter at home
Mainly due to poor form at home in the second half of the season (four defeats against Cottbus, Schalke, Freiburg and Bayern Munich, and draw against Hamburg) Bayer 04 drop down to fourth position in the table ahead of the last matchday.
'Final' against Bochum
On 19 May Bayer 04 take on already relegated VfL Bochum at the BayArena in a final for qualification for the UEFA Champions League, which also includes fourth place this time – Bayer win thanks to an outstanding performance in goal by Frank Juric and the only goal of the game scored by Oliver Neuville. A decent end to a turbulent season.
Change at the helm: Berti goes, Toppi arrives
Bayer 04 part company with Berti Vogts the day after the game against Bochum. Klaus Toppmöller is introduced as the new head coach on 21 May.