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Top 20 Surprises From The 2014-15 European Football Season

Who could have possibly imagined during the winter months, let alone all the way back in August 2014, how the European football year would come to an end. While the majority of fans around the world were waiting for the upcoming 2015 FIFA Women's World Cup and/or the Champions League Final that will feature Barcelona and Juventus, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Justice Department of the United States rocked the footballing world by indicting 14 officials during the final week of May. What this will mean for the future of the sport and of FIFA cannot be determined as of the posting of this piece, but the hope is that the matter brings necessary and sweeping changes to the beautiful game.

As for on-the-pitch matters that occurred over the course of the season, there were plenty of surprising and even shocking occurrences that made headlines and raised eyes. While the kings of Serie A and the Bundesliga held serve as just about any knowledgeable fan and analyst expected that those clubs would, the Premier League and La Liga saw old familiar faces once again claim their spots atop of those league tables. One of those two clubs has an opportunity to cement itself as the best in the game at will be the official conclusion of the current European season. Most, in fact, are expecting that team to emerge as Champions League winners.

What was set to be, far and away, the most surprising news of the 2014-15 European football season was the rain in Spain falling on what was, only one year ago, the undisputed best team in the world. That club not only went through a trophy-less campaign. It has seemingly blown up all that it had accomplished in recent memory, and that team is now on the verge of once again taking steps to keep up with its most hated rival club. That story has, however, since been overshadowed by all that happened in FIFA in the closing weeks of the spring. It is not yet a new day at FIFA, but there is hope that the sun is, in fact, setting on the organization's current run as it exists.

20 Freiburg painfully relegated

19 The fall of Gareth Bale

Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

18 Newcastle survive

via mirror.co.uk

17 Lyon finish second

via espnfc.com

16 The rise of Danny Rose

via in.finance.yahoo.com

15 C'mon, feel the Moyes

via thesun.co.uk

14 Blackpool fans

via TheGuardian.com

13 PSG shock Chelsea

via theguardian.com

12 Falcao

via 101greatgoals.com

11 Tim Sherwood saves the day

via mirror.co.uk

10 The near fall of Borussia Dortmund

via eurosport.com

9 Ageless wonder

via goal.com

8 Lazio to Champions League

via thenational.ae

7 Liverpool are..back?

via rockersports.co.tz

6 Old Juventus return

via worldsoccertalk.com

5 Luis Suarez: Good guy?

via weeklyups.com

4 Harry Kane

via eurosport.com

3 The fall of Real Madrid

via go7a.info

2 The fall of Carlo Ancelotti

via eurosport.co.uk

1 The FIFA scandal

via washingtonpost.com

FIFA is corrupt. That is no surprise, but it has now been confirmed by the FBI and by the United States Justice Department following a lengthy investigation. 14 officials have, to date, been indicted, and the FBI made it clear on May 27 that this was the only the beginning stages of what was to come. FIFA president Sepp Blatter has yet to be directly implicated, and he even won re-election on the last Friday of May. I along with football fans from around the world can think of one way he can celebrate: He could consider taking a holiday to the United States. What could go wrong?

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Top 20 Surprises From The 2014-15 European Football Season