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Reflecting on an exciting first half of the German Bundesliga season

The ESPN FC crew discuss Borussia Dortmund's domestic struggles after a 2-1 defeat to Werder Bremen, finishing 2014 joint-bottom with Freiburg in the Bundesliga.

"2014 was a year that made all our wishes come true," said German FA president Wolfgang Niersbach this week. But the World Cup party from Germany's win this summer couldn't go on forever, of course. Domestically, the 2014-15 Bundesliga campaign brought more trouble than festive cheer for all but a handful of clubs.

These were the main storylines of the typically eventful, unpredictable first half of the season after "that night in Rio."

1. Borussia Dortmund come off the rails

No other place to begin...

Yaya Toure, Aubameyang, Enyeama vie for African POTY award

Yaya Toure has won the award three years in a row.

The three-man shortlist for the African Footballer of the Year award has been announced and it contains Yaya Toure, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Vincent Enyeama.

Toure, who plies his trade for Manchester City and Ivory Coast, won the CAF award for a third consecutive year in 2013 and can trump Abedi Pele (the only other man to win three in a row) if he bags the prize which will be handed out on Jan. 8.

The 31-year-old midfielder won the Premier League title and the League Cup in...

 By Alex Shaw

European Report Cards: How has your team fared so far this season?

The ESPN FC crew discuss Borussia Dortmund's domestic struggles after a 2-1 defeat to Werder Bremen, finishing 2014 joint-bottom with Freiburg in the Bundesliga.

With football across Europe winding down for the winter break, it's time to have a look back at the campaign so far. We asked our ESPN FC bloggers to tackle seven questions on their side. Who's your side's unlikely hero, and who has work to do?

Each team's grade for the season so far is below -- and click on the team name for a comprehensive summary.

Click here for the verdict on all 20 Premier League teams.

LA LIGA:

Atletico Madrid: A-

Barcelona: C+

Real Madrid: A

BUNDESLIGA:

Bayern Munich: A

Borussia Dortmund Report Card: BVB's Bundesliga season so far

ESPN FC's Raf Honigstein examines the reasons Borussia Dortmund have been performing well in the Champions League but look like a different team in the German Bundesliga.

With the Bundesliga winding down for the winter break, now's the time to look at what has gone wrong at Borussia Dortmund. Can Jurgen Klopp stop this alarming slide in the Bundesliga while maintaining BVB's hopes in Europe?

Grade: F

Your Season So Far -- In A Sentence

It's the worst Bundesliga season in over 30 years for Borussia Dortmund.

Highlight

If there is a highlight in Dortmund's rotten season, it's definitely the Champions League so far. The little fun BVB fans had were on European nights,...

Borussia Dortmund 'stand behind Jurgen Klopp, more deals possible'

The ESPN FC crew discuss Borussia Dortmund's domestic struggles after a 2-1 defeat to Werder Bremen, finishing 2014 joint-bottom with Freiburg in the Bundesliga.

Borussia Dortmund CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke has not ruled out more winter transfers in both directions for the Bundesliga strugglers, and also renewed his vote of confidence for Jurgen Klopp.

On Monday, Dortmund sold South Korea international Ji Dong-Won to Augsburg and also announced the signing of Salzburg's Kevin Kampl. With the transfer window set to open on Jan. 1, Watze says the club could be involved in more deals imminently.

"It's not ruled out that we'll do a bit in the next few days," Watzke...