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 Post subject: Re: Bundesliga Thread
PostPosted: Thu Feb 26, 2015 1:06 am 
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I Only see highlights of Wolfsburg and have to admit he is a cracking player .. He reus sort of player wouldn't mind him at OT.

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pakrooney wrote:

So true mate ...he is consistently inconsistent throughout his united career ..but what if he turns consistent ..he will get around 40 goals...ATM im waiting for that time as his age is 24/25 :wait: ... :|
on Rooney ,Jan 16th, ..and as they rest is history


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 Post subject: Re: Bundesliga Thread
PostPosted: Thu Feb 26, 2015 9:57 am 
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Funnily enough one of the tabloids is linking us to him this morning for £30m these guys are so predictable.


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 Post subject: Re: Bundesliga Thread
PostPosted: Thu Feb 26, 2015 4:51 pm 
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I would gladly swap Reus KDB with Rooney ..

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pakrooney wrote:

So true mate ...he is consistently inconsistent throughout his united career ..but what if he turns consistent ..he will get around 40 goals...ATM im waiting for that time as his age is 24/25 :wait: ... :|
on Rooney ,Jan 16th, ..and as they rest is history


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 Post subject: Re: Bundesliga Thread
PostPosted: Thu Feb 26, 2015 6:15 pm 
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I'd maybe want to see a little bit more of KDB in the Champions League before I went to big on signing him as he hasn't really proven himself at that level yet and at international level he looks good but not great.

We've seen with Kagawa and to some extent Schurlle that players who excel in the Bundesliga don't always settle in England althoug both could argue they never got a sustained run in the position they excelled in with previous clubs.

I think Reus is off the table for a few years anyway as I think he wants to stay and try to win something at Dortmund as I think he missed out on their back to back titles.


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 Post subject: Re: Bundesliga Thread
PostPosted: Sat Feb 28, 2015 2:42 am 
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I'm pretty sure if fergie had stayed kagawa would have been playing at heart for united.He had good first season but it was Moyes who mis managed him.He was never given a proper run of game for me. Schurle is a very good player what he lacked and what mourinho wanted was workaholic like willian which he wasnt .

Reus won't leave Dortmund if he wanted he would have cashed on interest from united Madrid city.He has signed new (not big) deal and banging goals n assist as dortmund rise above relegation and into12th position.

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pakrooney wrote:

So true mate ...he is consistently inconsistent throughout his united career ..but what if he turns consistent ..he will get around 40 goals...ATM im waiting for that time as his age is 24/25 :wait: ... :|
on Rooney ,Jan 16th, ..and as they rest is history


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 Post subject: Re: Bundesliga Thread
PostPosted: Tue Mar 03, 2015 2:42 pm 
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It took 77 nervous minutes of frenetic, clumsy fumbling to get it in, as well as bit of masked role play and submissive assistance. But in the end, Borussia Dortmund came good on Saturday. The scenes of collective Black and Yellow relief at the final whistle made it impossible not to recall Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s pre-match revelation that “derby wins are almost like an orgasm”. He was being deadly serious, the Gabon striker had told Sport Bild in midweek: “It’s a similar feeling”.

Off-the-pitch pleasures are distributed a little more evenly, one should hope, but the Signal Iduna Park had indeed witnessed sheer ecstasy and successful reproduction, of a kind.

Borussia’s 3-0 triumph over local rivals Schalke was much more than a win; much more than a derby success. The supporters, team and staff experienced the perfect game said Jürgen Klopp, a performance so forceful, irresistible and convincing it felt like a rebirth. “Play, fun, thrill: that’s Borussia Dortmund,” the manager beamed, as if he’d just found his way home again after a seven-month ambulation through darkness.

The home side created enough high-calibre openings to win a dozen Ruhr derbies, while Roberto Di Matteo’s Royal Blues were so passive, they were hardly there at all. Their plan was to ride out the storm and hit an understrength BVB defence on the break. But the break never came. Schalke’s retro system with five defenders wasn’t able to offer sufficient resistance without any meaningful protection from midfield.

Dortmund, unmolested by any S04 pressing, used the space at the centre to pick up speed and thread killer passes by the minute. Three, four goals, they should have scored before half-time. It was the sort of dominance that can become worrisome, the longer the game dragged on scoreless, but the nervous tension that had begun to set in made the joy that greeted the opener all the more pronounced. Aubameyang and Reus celebrated with Batman and Robin masks that the striker had hidden next to the goal.

Klopp seemed in two minds whether he should applaud the duo’s bravado or chastise them for attracting the referee’s attentions. “Five yellows for cheering goals, that’s silly,” Klopp warned, but it was only Aubameyang’s second booking for going comic hero – Spiderman was his previous guise – and Reus, as the junior partner, escaped the yellow altogether. A surprising number of German journalists voiced their disapproval – not the done thing, you see, in a derby, for the first goal – but the fact the two partners in crime-fighting took the risk to look stupid, in more ways than one, also spoke of renewed optimism. “If there’s a good side to this goal celebration, it’s that Auba believed he would score,” said Klopp. “His confidence is sensational”.

“We had gone for dinner, that’s when we had the idea,” Reus said. The Germany midfielder, who added a late third goal when Timon Wellenreuther dwelled on the ball, was back to his pacy, incisive best throughout this non-contest. His contract extension seems to have lifted him and the rest of the team. BVB have gone from bungling matches with fatal mistakes that were contagious – every week, another big name fell victim to the mysterious disease – to playing so consistently well that even misfits Henrikh Mkhitaryan and fringe players such as Oliver Kirch automatically raise their game. Mkhitaryan, the scorer of the second goal, was singled out for praise by Klopp and his team-mates. They had all worked hard to talk some courage into the Armenian.

The fourth win in a row lifted BVB to 10th in league. They’re only five points clear of the relegation zone, but more importantly, dreams of a Champions League qualification are no longer preposterous. Klopp was unwilling to entertain the thought but in this form, his team should get close, at least.

The club’s and supporter’s patience already look vindicated; instead of changing personnel and/or tactics, Klopp has been allowed to do what he does, with the result that BVB have started resembling their former selves. Plan A, put into place properly, still works.

Schalke, by contrast, didn’t look like they’d be getting anywhere. Di Matteo, who had done so well to project a sense of calm and wisdom since his appointment, was moved to admit to his doubts for the first time. “I’m not sure we can continue in this system with these players,” he said. “It was collectively poor from us, including me”.

“If you’re taking this much fire, non-stop, things must have gone very wrong,” said the captain, Benedikt Höwedes. The sporting director, Horst Heldt – as has happened so often in these situations, under a variety of coaches – seemed to blame the players. “It’s a question of character … we have to apologise for this performance,” he said.

The Blues can still qualify for the Champions League to end their season on an acceptable note but nothing the new manager has done suggests he will have the sort of impact the club need to break out of their very narrow range (third or fourth place) and find the elusive next level. Their supporters crave a lot more than the odd passionate tryst with their neighbours, once or twice a year.

Results: Bayern 4-1 Cologne, Dortmund 3-0 Schalke, Hertha 1-0 Augsburg, Leverkusen 1-0 Freiburg, Hannover 1-1 Stuttgart, Hoffenheim 2-0 Mainz, Frankfurt 2-1 HSV, Gladbach 2-0 Paderborn, Bremen 3-5 Wolfsburg.


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 Post subject: Re: Bundesliga Thread
PostPosted: Mon Apr 13, 2015 10:04 am 
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Bayer Leverkusen have released defender Emir Spahic with immediate effect following a fight with security staff after a German Cup defeat.

The 34-year-old was filmed fighting with security personnel after the home tie with Bayern Munich on 8 April.

Leverkusen managing director Michael Schade said: "The latest revelations from the case last Wednesday leave us no other choice."

Spahic told Bayer's website : "I regret my behaviour towards security staff."

A Bosnia-Herzegovina international, he joined the club in 2013.

Leverkusen said Spahic accepted responsibility for his actions and agreed to the termination of his contract, which was scheduled to run to 2016.

Spahic injured his knee in the quarter-final tie and was ruled out for up to four weeks.

Bayern Munich advanced to the semi-finals 5-3 on penalties after the tie ended goalless after extra time.

Spahic, whose career includes spells at Lokomotiv Moscow in Russia, Montpellier in France and Sevilla in Spain, added: "I apologise to the people concerned and their families for my actions.

"I know this has also caused big problems for my club."

Bayer Leverkusen are fourth in the Bundesliga table.


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 Post subject: Re: Bundesliga Thread
PostPosted: Mon May 11, 2015 4:55 pm 
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Schalke have released Kevin-Prince Boateng and Sidney Sam in the wake of their 2-0 Bundesliga defeat to Koln on Sunday.

In a brief statement the club also confirmed that midfielder Marco Hoger has been suspended from training and first team action for the next week.

Boateng joined the Gelsenkirchen club from AC Milan for 15m euros in August 2013 and still had more than a year to run on his contract.

Sam arrived from Bayer Leverkusen last summer on a contract until 2018 but has struggled to make an impact, failing to find the net in 14 appearances for the club.

The loss to Koln was described by Schalke midfielder Julian Draxler one the side’s ‘worst performances in recent years’ and sporting director Horst Heldt announced there would be consequences.

Schalke are now 13 points behind fourth-placed Bayer Leverkusen and in danger of missing out on European football next season after losing to a side who secured their safety thanks to the three points.

Boateng and Sam appear to be the first to pay the price for a disappointing season at the Veltins-Arena.


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 Post subject: Re: Bundesliga Thread
PostPosted: Mon Aug 17, 2015 8:37 pm 
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“Kevin De Bruyne, du sohn einer hure.” It wasn’t in keeping with the universal praise that he tends to garner these days but this wasn’t a regular day for the Wolfsburg midfielder. The team’s creative muse was hooked by the coach, Dieter Hecking, after 75 minutes of their Bundesliga opener with Eintracht Frankfurt on Sunday afternoon; not the most premature of withdrawals, perhaps, but the earliest that he’s been substituted since arriving in Lower Saxony and indicative of an uncharacteristically flat performance.

Those near 3,000 travelling Eintracht fans who chanted their opprobrium well remembered one of the few bumps in Wolfsburg’s – and De Bruyne’s – road in a 2015 that has largely soared past any reasonable expectations. It was back on 3 February, a freezing cold Tuesday night at Eintracht’s Commerzbank-Arena, that the Belgian midfielder momentarily snapped, calling a ballboy a “motherfucker” for apparently not returning the ball to him quickly enough with the Wolves trailing in the second half.

Normal service resumed before long – it was De Bruyne’s late goal that enabled Hecking’s team to prise a point from an unpromising situation that night – but the home fans haven’t forgotten or, it seems, forgiven.

De Bruyne, for his part, reacted with a sarcastic wave as his took his place on the bench on Sunday but some frustration was evident later on. “They can shout ‘son of a bitch’ at me,” he complained after the match, “and I have to pay €20,000,” referring to the heavy fine imposed by the Deutscher Fussball-Bund (DFB) for the incident with the ballboy.

All this might have added up to a minor footnote in any other context, especially given that Wolfsburg won 2-1, but with Manchester City’s keen interest in De Bruyne hanging over their nascent season like a dark cloud, it all added to a tense atmosphere around him. Wolfsburg’s sporting director, Klaus Allofs, told Sky that there were still no official bids on the table for De Bruyne but “in the next few days” he is expecting one to arrive. “Our plan is that he’ll stay here,” Allofs said – but it sounded like a declaration more of hope than expectation and a definite move away from the “not for sale” message of a few weeks ago.

This is an unusual, if not entirely unprecedented, scenario for Wolfsburg. The anticipated completion of Baba Rahman’s move from Augsburg to Chelsea – announced minutes after the final whistle had gone on José Mourinho’s men capitulating at City – took Premier League spending on Bundesliga players this summer over the €100m mark in transfer fees alone – but Wolfsburg are supposed to be less vulnerable to the predators.

The club has what Allofs refers to as “a unique ownership situation” under Volkswagen, having originally started as a works team for this town built for factory workers and thus being excepted from the 50+1 model. In the past, this has given rise to some monumentally reckless spending, although since the arrivals of Allofs and Hecking in late 2012, transfer movement has declined to fairly sane levels.

The pair’s style is stability but Volkswagen’s money does a) help them pick up choice recruits one by one when they do want to buy; examples being André Schürrle and Max Kruse, the latter snatched from last season’s rivals Borussia Mönchengladbach and b) keep the squad happy with generous salaries, leaving them in a position to rebuff offers for feted players such as Ricardo Rodríguez.

It should have been enough to keep De Bruyne. Currently paid about €4.5m per year on a contract that runs to 2019, Wolfsburg were reported to be willing to up that sum to eight figures to extend that commitment. A new deal, while still hoped for, remains unsigned, though, and while De Bruyne is not actively agitating for a move, it is clear his head has been turned. There is an acceptance within the club that there are some elite suitors a player – and club – struggle to say no to and that City are one of those.

As well as being a setback to Wolfsburg’s lofty ambitions, with a first Champions League campaign in six years on the horizon, it is a short-term pickle for Hecking. This team has been fashioned around De Bruyne. When the Brazilian playmaker Diego, with six months to go on his deal, told Wolfsburg that he wanted to leave the club in the transfer window of January 2014, Allofs convinced the coach that it could be a positive.

Diego slowed down the game with the time he took on the ball, Allofs thought. A new, fleet-footed replacement could make Wolfsburg’s play more dynamic and flowing. That replacement was De Bruyne – and he really has turned the way the team have played upside down. The numbers are impressive, of course, with 20 assists made in the Bundesliga last season – it is 15 goals and 25 assists overall in the 18 months he has been at the Volkswagen Arena. He already set up Nicklas Bendtner’s crucial goal in the DFL-Supercup win over Bayern Munich.

Yet to quantify De Bruyne’s influence only in figures seems reductive. He is worth so much more than that to Wolfsburg. His speed, decision-making, constant appreciation of space and his sheer leadership totally dictates the way that his team plays. It is very difficult to imagine how Hecking, and Allofs, could replace him, especially in the space of the two weeks before the transfer deadline.

One also wonders whether De Bruyne would be doing the right thing in going. Having been the main man on loan at Werder Bremen in 2012-13, he struggled to adapt to being only on rotation at Chelsea, with José Mourinho quickly losing patience with what he saw as selfishness. There is little prospect of De Bruyne being given the extent of freedom and influence at City that he enjoys at Wolfsburg, which could be problematic for Belgium’s Euro 2016 hopes.

Those chants from Sunday’s visitors to the Volkswagen Arena would be a poor epitaph for De Bruyne’s glorious spell with Wolfsburg. Few of the summer’s Bundesliga departures for England will be lamented so much by Germany as a whole.

Talking points

• “The foundation that Jürgen Klopp left for me is outstanding.” Thomas Tuchel was in magnanimous mood after his dream Bundesliga debut as Dortmund coach, as BVB hammered Champions League-bound Mönchengladbach 4-0 in the battle of the Borussias. Yet none of the 81,359 in attendance at Signal Iduna Park could have been in any doubt; this was a very different Dortmund to the tired facsimile of their best self in the final months of his predecessor’s tenure.

Tuchel’s arrival has clearly been a huge shot in the arm. Henrikh Mkhitaryan, who scored twice – and has six in all competitions, factoring in Europa League qualifiers and DFB Pokal – is unrecognisable from the serial chance-fluffer of last season and the team overall seems to have moved on from being a one-trick pony. A much-needed tactical versatility was clear as Dortmund counterattacked at speed but also knew how to sit and slow the pace of the game when needed. It was mightily impressive, but …

• Bayern Munich’s own opening gala performance on Friday night in a 5-0 demolition of Hamburg underlined already that Pep Guardiola’s men are still in a class of their own. The most chilling aspect of all was that Bayern only really turned it on for 20-25 minutes but, even in that context, Hamburg got off lightly.

Douglas Costa was the standout for most; the 24-year-old Brazilian, newly arrived from Shakhtar Donetsk, brilliantly created one for Thomas Müller before scoring the final goal himself, with his speed and directness adding something that Guardiola’s team lacked in the final straight last season. As for Hamburg? Following last week’s Pokal exit to fourth-tier Carl-Zeiss Jena, at least it cannot get much worse. And hey, they lost 8-0 at the Allianz Arena last season, so it’s an improvement of a kind.

• Dortmund’s local rivals Schalke are also embarking on a new era of sorts, with André Breitenreiter having left Paderborn to replace the unpopular Roberto Di Matteo. It’s been a great start for the new coach, with Saturday’s 3-0 win at Werder Bremen making it eight goals scored and none conceded in two competitive games to date, even if it did take a jaw-dropping own goal from Werder’s Theodor Gebre Selassie to open the floodgates at Weserstadion.

• It was a less comfortable afternoon for Schalke’s new centre-forward Franco Di Santo, who was booed mercilessly by his former fans after activating a release clause in his contract to make the move to Gelsenkirchen. The Argentinian looked pleased to receive a collage of his Werder days from club staff pre-kick-off – probably because the presentation was indoors, away from the irate crowd displaying a large banner reading: Di Santo: Ich liebe geld (I love money). Still, it was a better day for him than for his team-mate Matija Nastasic. The former Manchester City defender ruptured an achilles tendon and will be out for six months.

Results Bayern Munich 5-0 Hamburg, Borussia Dortmund 4-0 Borussia Mönchengladbach, Bremen 0-3 Schalke, Darmstadt 2-2 Hannover, Augsberg 0-1 Hertha, Bayer Leverkusen 2-1 Hoffenheim, Mainz 0-1 Ingolstadt, Stuttgart 1-3 Köln, Wolfsburg 2-1 Frankfurt.


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 Post subject: Re: Bundesliga Thread
PostPosted: Tue Aug 25, 2015 8:15 pm 
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Chances spurned, shots mis-hit, final passes astray. The first half was playing out like countless other Borussia Dortmund league games in recent memory and anybody knowing anything at all about football knew what was coming next. One swift, devastating Ingolstadt counter-attack, or a goal from a corner, or a deflected shot, and then: a nagging, avoidable, hugely unnerving away defeat to one of the weakest teams in the Bundesliga.

This season’s Dortmund, however, are doing things differently. Ten minutes into the second half at the Audi-Sportpark, their makeshift right-back, Matthias Ginter, unexpectedly cut inside on his left foot and placed a low shot past the Ingolstadt goalkeeper Orjan Nyland. Marco Reus doubled the lead from the penalty spot on the hour mark.

The rest was a gentle stroll to the second 4-0 win in Thomas Tuchel’s second Bundesliga match on the BVB bench (with goals from Shinji Kagawa and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang) and to first spot in the table. The last time the club had enjoyed that position was two years ago. “It’s a nice picture and I don’t mind if it stayed like that forever,” Tuchel said about the view from the top.

He praised his team’s work ethic but was more impressed that they had managed to skip their inner stylus from the well-worn groove of yesterday’s ballads and onto the next track: a more uplifting, feelgood tune.

“I’m especially pleased that in the second half,” he said, “we managed to liberate ourselves from the dissatisfaction and frustration, from the self-fulfilling prophecy of thinking ‘if you don’t score, you’ll concede at some point’, and that we totally stayed focused on our task of doing what we were intending to do on the pitch”.

Sitting next to him on the press conference podium, the Ingolstadt coach Ralph Hasenhüttl seemed just as impressed. “It was an interesting experience for us today,” said the manager of the Bavarian Bundesliga debutants. “We won’t have seen Dortmund’s last win in the league today”.

That much is certain. Within the space of six consecutive wins in as many competitive games, Tuchel has built up so much positive momentum that the away supporters in Ingolstadt were singing lustily about their team winning the title and the captain Mats Hummels had to field questions about the Meisterschaft.

“It’s been a promising start but it would be too early to cultivate any sort of hopes,” said the centre-back, who had admitted to comfort-eating during last year’s hellish campaign. It is unclear how much of an impact Tuchel’s ban on long-standing, much-loved pizza and pasta deliveries to the Dortmund training ground by a local restaurateur have had on the team’s fresh appetite for destruction – Tuchel has stopped eating carbohydrates altogether – but to the naked eye, Dortmund look as lean and mean as they did at the peak of their powers in 2012.

A new dietary regime, a new fitness coach and a new – or perhaps renewed – attention to small details on the pitch have all played their part in restoring the club to their position as the second super-power in German football.

Tuchel has been irritated by some of the media attention on mundane matters like the fact that he coaches players on the positioning of their feet or puts out the cones for some of the complex exercises himself – “Maybe nobody had watched the training at Mainz before,” he wondered – but Dortmund had been in desperate need of these kind of small but important readjustments after seven years under Jürgen Klopp. For all the club’s bad luck with injuries and poor finishing, the set-up had outlived itself.

Tuchel is reluctant to speak about change and evolution because these terms imply progress, thereby denigrating the previous regime. “Kloppo has taken the team to where they are now, and now there’s a new coach. That’s it,” he said. “I get angry when comparisons are made. Kloppo said it in his farewell speech: don’t make comparisons because they diminish the new or the old, depending on results”.

There’s no question, however, that Tuchel has taken the Klopp blueprint –strong pressing, counter-pressing, constant movement, many high-tempo sprints – and given it an extra dimension, courtesy of better possession play. Whereas the new breed of German coaches focus on playing “against the ball”, Tuchel – an avowed Pep Guardiola fan – wants complete domination with and without the ball.

He has described Guardiola’s Barça as the “non-plus-ultra” and spent two evenings talking football with the Catalan coach in a bar and restaurant in Munich. Eye witnesses claim that the duo requisitioned extra salt and pepper mills from other tables. Tuchel sees a more patient, controlled buildup as a necessary measure to allow rest periods on the ball and also as the key to succeed against defensive sides. Klopp’s up and down madness has begun to give way to a more varied tempo, with pace being built up in the final third, through positional switches and direct combinations.

Tuchel has been helped in his task by Dortmund coming through the transfer window unscathed so far. Qualification for the Europa League, a competition that will generate plenty of income and could well yield a trophy, has enabled the club to keep all their best players for the first time since they won the league in 2011.

Ilkay Gündogan is coming back to his best. Henrikh Mkhitaryan, a perennial under-performer under Klopp relative to his amazing skill-set, has been superb so far. Even Ginter, who had been banished to the BVB amateurs before, is showing glimpses of the qualities that made him a €10m player. A deep, multi-talented squad and one of the most driven, smartest coaches in the business: It was always going to work. But this early, this well? Dortmund are destined for great things again and the Bundesliga will be all the better for it.

Results: Hertha Berlin 1-1 Werder Bremen 1-1, FC Köln 1-1 Wolfsburg, Hamburg 3- 2 Stuttgart, Hannover 0-1 Bayer Leverkusen, Frankfurt 1- 1 Augsburg, Hoffenheim 1-2 Bayern Munich, Schalke 1-1 Darmstadt, Ingolstadt 0-4 Borussia Dortmund, Borussia Mönchengladbach 1- 2 Mainz.


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 Post subject: Re: Bundesliga Thread
PostPosted: Fri Sep 04, 2015 10:04 pm 
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Despite having done good business this summer, Bundesliga clubs will be glad to see the end of the transfer window. The German football magazine 11 Freunde perhaps summed it up best with the headline – Schließ das Fenster, es zieht! – close the window, there’s a draft. The move from the Bundesliga to the Premier League started in relatively unspectacular fashion, with Spurs’ post-season signing of the Austrian centre-back Kevin Wimmer from FC Köln. Since then, however, the number of transfers has increased, as has their significance.

Wimmer’s move to London was followed by the transfer of Spanish striker Joselu from Hannover 96 to Stoke City, Roberto Firmino’s big-money switch from Hoffenheim to Liverpool and Japanese forward Shinji Okazaki’s move to Leicester City from Mainz 05 for around €11m.

An early standout transfer was that of Bastian Schweinsteiger to Manchester United. Although he was reportedly surplus to requirements, the Germany captain’s move had a sprinkling of glamour. The midfielder’s switch to Old Trafford was swiftly followed by Chelsea finally breaking Augsburg’s resolve and taking Abdul Rahman Baba to Stamford Bridge, and Spurs’ second dip into the Bundesliga talent pool saw them sign South Korean forward Son Heung-min from Bayer Leverkusen. And, of course, Manchester City left it late to blow all other transfers out of the water by splashing €70m on Belgian star Kevin de Bruyne from VfL Wolfsburg.

Add to this Louis van Gaal’s continued courtship of Thomas Müller, rumours around Arjen Robben, and Julian Draxler’s intermittent links to Arsenal, and it has been a disquieting time for Bundesliga trainers looking to plan for the season ahead.

The Premier League clubs’ inflated spending power, thanks to the latest TV deal, has made them dangerous admirers. It isn’t just the inflated transfer fees that make their advances impossible to ignore, but the personal terms on the table are often astronomical enough to turn the heads of most players. Despite already being one of the top earners at VfL Wolfsburg – themselves one of the highest payers in the Bundesliga – De Bruyne is reportedly earning €20m a season in Manchester.

Manchester City’s gain is very much Wolfsburg’s – and the Bundesliga’s – loss. With De Bruyne on fire last season, and Dutch forward Bas Dost banging in the goals, Wolfsburg gave the impression that they were on the verge of offering a serious and sustained challenge to Bayern Munich. Add to that a hopefully fully fit and focused Andre Schürrle and Dante coming in from Bayern, and trainer Dieter Hecking should have been thinking big. As it turns out though, De Bruyne’s exit – however well offset by the arrival of Julian Draxler for a club-record fee – is a kick in the teeth for not only Hecking and the fans, but also those hoping for a closer-run Bundesliga campaign. They have Draxler, but he could just as well have been the replacement for Ivan Perisic, who had just signed for Internazionale. With Draxler, Schürrle and De Bruyne, Wolfsburg fans could have started to dream.

As far as other challengers go, Borussia Dortmund have started encouragingly under Thomas Tuchel but they still have a way to go. The rest of the chasing pack – Schalke, Leverkusen and Gladbach – have previously found it difficult to sustain a long run of good form. Perhaps just as importantly, neither have the spending power of Volkswagen-backed Wolfsburg.

While Schalke have lost Draxler – albeit not to the Premier League – Bayer Leverkusen have waved goodbye to Son Heung-min after two very productive seasons in which the pacy forward scored 12 goals. As with De Bruyne, both Son and Draxler are in their early twenties and both clubs might have hoped for at least one more season from them. Under Roger Schmidt, Leverkusen look an impressive outfit, and signing Javier Hernández from Manchester United for around €11m could prove to be one of the deals of the summer. But, surely they would have stood more of a chance with both Hernández and Son.

In some cases, however, the move was on the cards. Roberto Firmino had probably outgrown Hoffenheim, a relatively small club, and they would have been happy to bring in €41m for a player they signed for around €4m in 2011. Further down the league, the moves of Okazaki, Rahman Baba and Joselu may have been less glamorous and expensive, but just as costly to the players’ now former clubs.

Augsburg tried to play hardball with Chelsea over Rahman Baba but would have been consigned to losing the Ghana defender as soon as José Mourinho had made the first enquiry. Having signed the player for only €2.5m last year, Augsburg – like Hoffenheim – may have done great business, but they have also lost an important first-team player, and one who would have been earmarked as a future cornerstone of the manager’s plans.

Leicester’s new acquisition, Shinji Okazaki, might not have set the world alight at VfB Stuttgart, but the Japanese forward became a key player after switching to Mainz 05 two seasons ago, scoring 27 goals in 65 league games. Although they look to have snapped up a ready-made replacement in Yoshinori Muto – who, at 23, has six years on Okazaki, and has already scored twice in the opening three league games – Mainz have lost their main goal threat and an international with an almost one-in-two scoring record for Japan from around 100 caps.

Like the other clubs mentioned, they did good business, turning a €1.5m purchase into an €11m sale after two seasons. It should also be said that Okazaki was keen to leave and Mainz were adamant that he would only be sold to a foreign club. Still, can they expect phone calls about Muto next summer, if his fine form continues?

Stoke City’s new Spanish striker, Joselu, was only at Hannover 96 for a year, but since arriving from Hoffenheim had scored some important goals for the club, who were looking to fill the shooting boots of Mame Diouf – the Spaniard’s new team-mate at the Britannia. Joselu has already been missed by a Hannover team who have failed to win in the first three games, scoring just twice.

Due to its sometimes random and frenzied nature, the transfer period – particularly towards the sharp end – is inherently an unsettling and exciting time for fans, players and clubs alike. There will always be winners and losers, and this year is no different. High profile players in the Premier League have seen deals fall through and even bridges with their existing employers and fans seemingly burnt. Still, it just seems that one trend of this window was the improvement of the Premier League at the expense of its German counterpart.

But before we start to feel too sorry for the Bundesliga clubs, the players leaving the country this summer have generally brought in decent transfer fees. Nevertheless, it’s all well and good handing clubs such as Augsburg, Hoffenheim, Mainz and Hannover sacks full of freshly printed bank notes, but this money does not guarantee anything. Who says they can simply replace the players they have lost?

Sure, Wolfsburg seem to have done a decent job bringing in an almost like-for-like De Bruyne replacement in Draxler, while keeping around €40m stuffed in their back pocket. But how likely is it that Hoffenheim will pluck another Firmino from Brazil, or that Augsburg will find another gem in the second division? It’s possible, yes, but it’s unlikely, at least in the short term. While Wolfsburg browse for a De Bruyne replacement, clubs further down the food chain are forced to look for the new De Bruyne – to dig for rough diamonds and hope others will not notice their sparkle too quickly.

And it is isn’t just financial constraints these clubs are working under. Although they are occasionally in the hunt for European football, Hoffenheim, Mainz, Hannover, and Augsburg (despite having a very talented trainer in Marcus Weinzierl) are not particularly glamorous destinations that hold a lot of pulling power that will attract new recruits.

All in all, the Bundesliga has emerged a little bruised from the transfer window. And while the larger clubs are able to roll with the punches and even throw a few of their own, other clubs may well be glancing nervously at the window, checking that it is not just closed, but locked – keeping out the draft for another four months at least.



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 Post subject: Re: Bundesliga Thread
PostPosted: Sun Sep 06, 2015 2:02 am 
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Pressure back on guardiola after goetze brace ..

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So true mate ...he is consistently inconsistent throughout his united career ..but what if he turns consistent ..he will get around 40 goals...ATM im waiting for that time as his age is 24/25 :wait: ... :|
on Rooney ,Jan 16th, ..and as they rest is history


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 Post subject: Re: Bundesliga Thread
PostPosted: Mon Sep 21, 2015 10:46 pm 
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Max Eberl got the call at 7.20am on Sunday while taking his dog, Hunter, for a walk. Lucien Favre’s agent was on the line, and the news came as the biggest shock of the season: The manager wanted to resign with immediate effect, Eberl was told. The Borussia Mönchengladbach sporting director met with the coach and members of the board an hour later at the club’S HQ on Hennes-Weisweiler-Allee.

“Favre said that he was worried that he could no longer find solutions to our problems but we tried to alleviate his doubts and told him that we were convinced he’d find the right solutions,” Eberl recalled at a press conference on Monday afternoon. The two parties agreed to reconvene a few hours later on Sunday. Once again the Swiss coach, 57, said he did not trust himself to get the team out of their rut of five league defeats and one in the Champions League. Once again, Eberl and the board insisted they trusted him to do just that

Favre, a former Servette Geneva player who would keep his team-mates up talking football all night and a highly-strung perfectionist prone to mood swings, had come close to walking out on the job before during his four and a half seasons at the Borussia Park, Eberl revealed.

But this time, “he didn’t listen to us, he had made the decision”. And yet, the club were still hopeful they could talk Favre round before he finally forced their hand by going public with his resignation on Sunday evening. It was the most unusual of break-ups and yet oddly befitting a coach who at times has appeared so enigmatic that Spiegel Online called him a “human black box” on Monday. “He has left the way he is,” they wrote.

Gladbach’s statements spoke of anger and incomprehension at Favre’s unilateral goodbye out of the blue – “it has shaken us to the core,” said the president Rolf Königs – after the 1-0 defeat in the derby at Cologne on Saturday but by Monday, denial and anger had given way to grieving. “I’m just really sad this incredible time together has come to an end,” said Eberl. “He was the perfect coach for us and we were the perfect club for him.”

To be sure, one Champions League and Europa League run under Favre marked the Foals’ best spell in 20 years. These achievements, won wholly without the help of notable investment, thanks to smart transfer dealings and hundreds of meticulous coaching sessions in which the manager would micro-manage players’ positioning – down to a few inches here or there – as well as their passing technique (“he makes every player better,” said Fabian Johnson), appear greater still if you consider that Favre had taken over when Borussia were deep in the relegation zone in February 2011.

Now he has gone, leaving them in much the same predicament he originally found them, albeit with a much more talented set of players. A manager doing what is right for the club at the expense of his own position or a manager fleeing because he doesn’t have the bottle to fight for survival?

It is a matter of opinion. But both options essentially do not reflect too well on a coach who had been tipped for the biggest jobs in the league (Bayern, Dortmund) not long ago. Favre’s exit echoes his Hertha Berlin demission in 2009-10 after only six games, all defeats. The previous season, he had nearly led the club to a first-ever championship.

The timing of this one couldn’t have been much worse for Borussia, that much is certain. “In September,good coaches don’t fall from the trees, they tend to be under contract,” said Eberl, who admitted that there had been “no plan B” in place for this unforeseen eventuality. Jürgen Klopp will not take over, the former Dortmund coach’s agent told Sport-Bild. The Gladbach icon Jupp Heynckes, meanwhile, is unlikely to come out of retirement at the age of 70. Mirko Slomka is very much available but looks an uninspiring if not outright dull successor compared to the eccentric tactical mastermind that was Favre.

In the meantime André Schubert, the German under-15 and Gladbach under-23 coach, will take over as interim manager for the league game against Augsburg on Wednesday and might still be in situ when Manchester City visit the week after. Eberl tried to end the press conference on a positive note, expressing a hope that points would likely be picked up again with the return of key players such as Patrick Herrmann and Álvaro Domínguez, who had crucially missed the opening weeks with injuries.

“We are sure that the problems with the squad are about to get smaller,” the 42-year-old said, intimating that he had put forward the same view in discussions with Favre on Sunday. Worryingly for the club, the manager did not seem to believe him.

It is all one fine mess, and especially disheartening if you remember the excitement that engulfed one of Germany’s best-supported clubs at the beginning of this season. The 2015-16 campaign was supposed to underline Borussia’s return to former glory days, not plunge them back into pre-Favre darkness.

Talking Points

• Close to 2,000 BMG fans boycotted the derby and instead marched through Gladbach’s city centre on Saturday in protest against a reduced contingent of away tickets and personalised tickets for the derby at Cologne. The measures had been brought in as a consequence of crowd trouble in the previous season – instigated by Köln fans – and the home supporters, too, voiced their opposition, if that is the right word. They mostly stayed silent throughout the 90 minutes which made the game an eerie, unsettling event. A header from Anthony Modeste settled the rather forgettable affair.

• Elsewhere, there were fan banners telling BILD, the nation’s biggest tabloid, to do one, in varying degrees of politeness. The league had arranged for the paper’s “We help” badge to be worn on the players’s shirts in aid of joint charitable support for refugees. A noble cause, to be sure, but one that was just that little bit undermined by BILD having previously run with dozens of less-than-welcoming refugee cover stories - back in the summer, when asylum-seeker hostels were besieged by right-wing mobs and being burnt down, before the wider public decided to come out in favour of helping thousands of Syrians fleeing their war-torn country.

First, St Pauli, the second division club who have supported refugees long before it became a cause célèbre in Germany, refused to wear the BILD badge. The editor Kai Diekmann, a serial Twitter irritant, duly accused the Pauli of “not caring for refugees”. Nine other clubs were so appalled by Diekmann’s transparent hypocrisy that they followed St Pauli’s lead and went into the games without the BILD logo. The first division clubs didn’t quite have the backbone to go that far, citing contractual agreements (BILD is the licence holder for internet highlights), but Schalke, for example, put out a press releases that made their frustrations clear. “The totally unnecessary public comments (by BILD in relation to St Pauli’s decision) have caused damage” the Royal Blues declared. “We are sure that Schalke 04 won’t be the only ones drawing their conclusions (from this affair).”

• “We had to laugh at times on the bench,” admitted Schalke’s coach André Breitenreiter on Sunday, after Stuttgart had wasted enough chances to win in double figures. Funnily enough, though, Leroy Sané scored with one of the few opportunities S04 created to consign Alex Zorniger’s Swabians to a fifth defeat in the row. “It was a totally undeserved win for us,” said Breitenreiter, and the usually very critical Stuttgart crowd seemed to agree. They applauded their well-playing losers.

• No such mixed emotions at Dortmund, however. The black and yellows were able to notch up an 11th consecutive win in all competitions under Thomas Tuchel, beating Bayern Leverkusen 3-0 with another superb performance to reclaim the top of the table from Bayern. For Roger Schmidt’s side, the third loss in a row was a chastening experience but the manager was right to claim that Bayer might have won the excellent game on another day. Javier Hernández had shot just wide in the first half, when there was little to separate the two teams. “We know how to evaluate our results properly,” said Tuchel in an effort to tone down the euphoria. It’s no use though. Proper evaluation of Dortmund’s results this season can but suggest that the good times are back.

Results

Mainz 3-1 Hoffenheim, Werder Bremen 0-1 Ingolstadt, Hamburg 0-0 Frankfurt, Wolfsburg 2-0 Hertha, Darmstadt 0-3 Bayern,Cologne 1-0 Borussia Mönchengladbach, Stuttgart 0-1 Schalke, Augsburg 2-0 Hannover, Borussia Dortmund 3-0 Bayer Leverkusen.


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 Post subject: Re: Bundesliga Thread
PostPosted: Wed Sep 23, 2015 7:31 am 
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LewanWOWski!!! :thumbup:

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 Post subject: Re: Bundesliga Thread
PostPosted: Sun Dec 06, 2015 3:46 pm 
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Wolfsburgs home run is over.

Kagawa hit a 93rd minute winner against them for Dortmund.

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 Post subject: Re: Bundesliga Thread
PostPosted: Mon Dec 21, 2015 10:05 pm 
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Bold man with beard steps down, safe pair of hands takes over – it’s fair to say the fallout from Bayern Munich’s 1-0 win at Hannover didn’t come as a total surprise. But enough of Michael Frontzeck (out) and Mirko Slomka (in, probably) for the moment. The slightly bigger story of the weekend, as you might have heard, was Pep Guardiola’s long goodbye in Munich becoming official at last. The Catalan has been “something of a very good looking, very erotic but also, at times, totally prissy lover that you look at, next to you in bed, with pride each morning, even if you never know what kind of mood she’s about to wake up in ,” Süddeutsche Zeitung wrote in a fabulous page three feature. “FC Bayern have tried to be a good partner for their bridezilla … but it sadly wasn’t quite enough, the way they tried.”

The next man in the Säbener Strasse bed, Carlo Ancelotti, will be a little less erotic but, they hope, much easier to live with. And for the Bundesliga’s internal competitiveness, Pep leaving will certainly be seen as good news. Unlike the 44-year-old, who has compared league games to “pizza and hamburgers each day” but always retained the appetite to completely devour even the most moderate fare, gourmet Ancelotti clearly gets more excited by international haute cuisine.

In 20 years at top clubs in Italy, England, France and Spain, the 56-year-old has won as many Champions League trophies (three) as championships. Bayern will soon find out whether Ancelotti’s low-intensity approach in dealings with his superiors and the dressing room can combine domestic bliss with adequate performance levels.

Guardiola’s influence in Germany will continue beyond his actual presence, that much is certain. In Borussia Dortmund, there’s now a second team playing “super football” a la Pep, with super gegenpressing, super ball circulation, super players and a most importantly a super, super coach, the proudly “out” Guardiola disciple Thomas Tuchel. His second-placed Black and Yellows suffered a rare defeat away to FC Köln on Saturday (2-1) but they have done so well and scored so many goals (84) in Tuchel’s first six months in charge that they could afford to see the pre-Christmas slip-up as the equivalent of that last, unproductive day in the office when people just wander about, nobody and nothing quite works, and nobody really cares either. “We all have deserved to go on holiday now, including myself,” Tuchel declared.

Who could disagree? The first half of 2015-16 has shown Germany’s top flight, a division once ruled by alpha-male midfielders, as a manager’s league. Kicker named the Darmstadt supremo Dirk Schuster Man of the Year in Monday’s edition. A good choice in the face of the no-budget Lilies’ promotion and excellent start to the new season. But they could have just easily picked Tuchel, Pal Dardai (Hertha), André Schubert (Borussia Mönchengladbach), Ralph Hasenhüttl (Ingolstadt) or Markus Weinzierl (Augsburg), who are all working wonders with their respective teams. (Kicker could have also picked Guardiola, in truth. But they don’t like Guardiola, so that wasn’t an option).

Leverkusen’s Roger Schmidt, a man who wouldn’t look out of place as a police detective in a terrestrial tea-time show set in Paderborn and the Wolfsburg manager Dieter Hecking, who served as an actual Polizeimeister for three years prior to his playing career, might still, yes, cop similar praise with a bit more consistency after the winter break. Martin Schmidt (Mainz), Bruno Labbadia (HSV) and Schalke’s André Breitenreiter are doing decent jobs, too. Overall, the quality of coaching has been very high, from bridezilla down.

There are exceptions, of course. Victor Skripnik could well see his winter holiday extended indefinitely. His Werder Bremen side lost away to Eintracht Frankfurt in a fashion that had the local paper Weser-Kurier anxiously staring into a crystal ball. “Four months to go. That’s how long Bremen are still allowed to play in the Bundesliga at least,” they wrote, “not a lot of time for a miracle. There’s not a lot to inspire hope.”

VfB Stuttgart, however, can sleep a bit easier over the next few weeks. The Swabians’ rousing 3-1 win over Wolfsburg lifted to them to 15th spot and pacified the supporters. The midfield sharpshooter Daniel Didavi scored two goals against the visitors, who are strongly rumoured to have agreed terms with him for next season. The 25-year-old ruled out a move in the winter window, though: “I’m staying, 100%.” So is Jürgen Kramny. The interim manager was promoted to coach proper the day after VfB’s fourth league win. “He and his staff have shown that they can get the team to function,” said the sporting director, Robin Dutt.

Kramny had toned down the excessive pressing game of his predecessor Alexander Zorniger by positioning his team deeper. The club, in their hour of need, have stopped the revolution and reverted to a more pragmatic programme. “First of all, our modus must be: winning games,” said Dutt. It’s one of the great ironies that Stuttgart, the birthplace of the by-now dominant footballing school of the same name in Germany, are yet to adapt the style successfully. Maybe Kramny will be a bit bolder once there are a few more points on the board.

All shall be revealed in due course. In the meantime, liebe Freunde, have a super, super Christmas and even super-er new year.

Results: Schalke 1-0 Hoffenheim, Hannover 0-1 Bayern, Köln 2-1 Dortmund, Ingolstadt 0-1 Leverkusen, Hamburg 0-1 Augsburg , Frankfurt 2-1 Bremen, Stuttgart 3-1 Wolfsburg, Hertha 2-0 Mainz, Gladbach 3-2 Darmstadt.


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 Post subject: Re: Bundesliga Thread
PostPosted: Thu Jun 09, 2016 10:11 pm 
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Germany's top two divisions have sold their domestic media rights for 4.6bn euros (£3.6bn), almost double their previous deal.

The deal covers four seasons from 2017-18 and is an 85% increase on the amount raised by the same rights in 2013.

Terrestrial broadcasters ARD and ZDF will show highlights and a small number of live games.

The Premier League's sale of domestic rights for three seasons from 2016-17 raised £5.14bn in February 2015.


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 Post subject: Re: Bundesliga Thread
PostPosted: Mon Jun 27, 2016 6:02 pm 
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Less than 24 hours after Switzerland were eliminated from the European Championship, Swiss forward Breel Embolo has completed a move from Basel to Bundesliga side Schalke.

The two clubs confirmed the transfer on Sunday. Embolo, 19, has signed a five-year contract with Schalke, who finished fifth in the Bundesliga last season. Swiss champions Basel said the fee will not be disclosed, though it is reportedly €25m (£20m).

Schalke revealed Embolo’s signing to thousands of fans at its annual members’ meeting, with a video message suggesting the club beat interest from other European sides including Barcelona, Manchester United and Arsenal.

Embolo, who appeared in the video wearing a Schalke shirt, said: “I’m happy to be a Royal Blue.”

The Cameroon-born forward played in each of Switzerland’s games at Euro 2016, but failed to score. He was a second-half substitute in the last-16 match against Poland, which Switzerland lost on penalties after the match finished 1-1.

Embolo has three Swiss league winner’s medals with Basel, and has traded a place in the Champions League group stage for the Europa League with Schalke next season.


Personal opinion is the big clubs looked and decided he wasn't ready yet but i bet they'll all be keeping a close eye on him at Schalke to see how he progresses


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 Post subject: Re: Bundesliga Thread
PostPosted: Mon Aug 01, 2016 8:43 pm 
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Wolfsburg have signed the Poland midfielder Jakub Blaszczykowski from their Bundesliga rivals Borussia Dortmund.

Wolfsburg said the 30-year-old signed a three-year contract. Both clubs agreed not to disclose the transfer fee though Kicker magazine reported it as being around €5m (£4.2m).

The Wolfsburg sporting director, Klaus Allofs, said: “Blaszczykowski is a player that will do any team good. Not only because of his footballing capabilities, but also because he is a model of dedication, commitment and passion and because he gives 100% to his team.”

Blaszczykowski, who played 197 Bundesliga games for Dortmund, winning the league in 2011 and 2012, spent last season on loan at the Serie A side Fiorentina. Injuries hampered his time in Italy, though he impressed at Euro 2016 with Poland, although he missed the decisive penalty in quarter-final shootout against Portugal.


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 Post subject: Re: Bundesliga Thread
PostPosted: Mon Sep 12, 2016 7:13 pm 
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Victory tasted sweet in Leipzig on Saturday night. It always does: cough-medicine-sickly-sweet, with a hint of molten gummy bear and factory floor puddle. A first taurine-infused Bundesliga win for die Roten Bullen in their first ever top-flight home match went down especially well, however: it came against super-traditional, mega-authentic behemoths Borussia Dortmund – a club run on ‘true love’ (as the BVB marketing department has it) and supported by principled ultras who preferred to turn out in their thousands for the Black and Yellows’ under-23 fourth division game against Wuppertaler SV (0-0) at the atmospheric, ramshackle ‘Rote Erde’ ground next to the Signal Iduna Park instead.

Much had been said and written about that unofficial boycott. Some thought the lack of support from the die hards was counter-productive as far as Dortmund’s chances at the Red Bull Arena were concerned. Others sarcastically pointed to the futility of the gesture: the away section tickets (and good few more in the home stands) were quickly snapped up by local Dortmund fans eager to see their team in the flesh anyway. ‘The most hated club in Germany‚‘ the newspaper WAZ predicted, would not be hurt by the protest in the slightest: ‘The stadium will be full, Red Bull will continue to invest, Leipzig will continue to play their part.’

In a piece for 11 Freunde, the German football magazine at the vanguard of traditionalism and mullet-adorned nostalgia, Uli Hesse compellingly argued that fans, in Dortmund and elsewhere, don’t need such lectures from the media or football people; they are perfectly capable of deciding for themselves who they like and dislike and how to make their voice heard in a peaceful manner. ‘The supporters’ role is not be told what the role of supporters should be,’ he wrote. There is, in other words, nothing wrong with not turning up at a club whose business model you dislike. Unlike Bayer Leverkusen and Wolfsburg, whose teams have emerged rather organically, RB Leipzig brazenly bought themselves a place in the higher echelons of German football by taking over and rebranding fifth division SSV Markranstädt in 2009. It doesn’t get anymore artificial: the club solely exists as a vehicle for the Red Bull group.

Will other corporations follow suit and circumvent the 50 plus 1 rule restricting direct investment into professional teams by systematically propping up lower league sides in a similar manner? Critics warn of a dystopian future where Germany’s top flight will be contested by Coca-Cola Cottbus, Snickers Offenbach and The Lenovo Lederhosen. But, as Saturday night’s ‘explosion’ (as Süddeutsche Zeitung phrased it) of joy after Naby Keïta’s 89th-minute winner in front of the 43,000 capacity crowd showed, there’s another side to this story: that of the Leipzig supporters. If Hesse is right – and he surely is – than the right for supporters to enjoy their football any way they like must necessarily also apply to those in Lower Saxony.

Leipzig, a former football powerhouse of a city, hasn’t had anything to shout about since VfB Leipzig were relegated in 1994. RB might have been born in sin, in the sports franchise division of Red Bull’s Austrian headquarters, but the club has since unquestionably been adopted, wholeheartedly, by locals proud to have a stake in the first division again. They want Leipzig in the Bundesliga. They want to be in the Bundesliga. Red Bull is only the means to that particular end.

Deep down, this too is about football as an expression of identity and communal pride; a real, genuine sentiment that 11 Freunde and ultras everywhere would undoubtedly approve of – if they were able to look past the wretched name and inglorious ownership structure. ‘One could feel the force of football – even though it came from a can,’ wrote Frankfurter Allgemeine about the impressive home debut of Ralph Hasenhüttl’s men. It is patently acceptable to turn your nose up at the upstarts, to dismiss them as plastics etc etc. Supporters of other RB-owned entities, namely at Salzburg, Leipzig’s feeder team, have valid concerns about the business model. Whether the hate and visceral anger directed at RBL and their supporters is really warranted, however, is a question worth asking.

There is something disturbingly nativist about the backlash, a reactionary ‘us and them’, ‘true and false’ pattern of thought that would be abhorred in other walks of life. Should those unlucky enough to live in a city without a successful big, historic club simply accept their bad fortune? Is the (questionable) purity of the German model really more important than a chance of upward mobility for those born in the wrong town? And why isn’t smart investment, innovation and ambition preferable to the ossification of the status quo? No wonder foreign observers find it very hard to understand why RBL are so despised.

It might take decades for the dislike to wane but RB Leipzig will have become a sizeable force Germany and perhaps beyond long before that. The manner of the 1-0 victory over Dortmund, a tactically-sophisticated battle of wits won without much of the ball by a cast of young, hard-running players, suggested that Europa League qualification at the first time of asking might not be beyond Leipzig’s finest. We’d all better deal with it.

Results Schalke 0-2 Bayern, Darmstadt 1-0 Frankfurt, Ingolstadt 0-2 Hertha Berlin, Wolfsburg 0-0 Köln, Leverkusen 3-1 Hamburg, Freiburg 3-1 Borussia Mönchengladbach, Leipzig 1-0 Borussia Dortmund, Werder Bremen 1-2 Augsburg 1-2, Mainz 4-4 Hoffenheim


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