Douglas Costa gained a foothold in the Bundesliga as quickly as he sprints across the pitch. His peers have now selected the FCB winger as the best outfield player of the first half of the season! 30.3 percent of the pros employed by the 18 Bundesliga teams voted for Costa, clearly ahead of Dortmund's Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang on 23 percent. Two more Bayern players are among the top four: Thomas Müller on 18.8 percent, and Robert Lewandowski on 10.3 percent. 244 Bundesliga players took part in the poll conducted by weekly journal kicker.
Neuer again hailed by peers
The players also decided on the best goalkeeper of the first half-season – and Manuel Neuer retained the accolade by a considerable margin. 31.6 percent voted for Neuer, ahead of Köln's Timo Horn on 11.1 percent. Neuer was voted best goalkeeper for the fourth time in a row.
Müller rated top trio's closest contender
Who is the best player in the world? The pros answered this question too, bringing up a native Bavarian next to the trio in the race for the FIFA Ballon d'Or. According to the Bundesliga players, Thomas Müller is the only serious competitor to Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo and Neymar.
Pros favour Bayern for the title
The 244 players favour FC Bayern as a whole. No fewer than 96 percent of all the players polled think the German record champions will top the table at the end of the season, ahead of Borussia Dortmund: 88.7 percent believe the Black and Yellows will finish runners-up. The pros favour FCB in the Champions League too. 40.6 percent think the Munich men will win Europe's elite club competition, closely followed by FC Barcelona on 40.2 percent. It is going to be thrilling!