It’s time to push on beyond the frustration and disappointment that FIFA’s ExCo was expected to bring and get back to the football!
After all, Mou Mou thinks that club football is bigger than all this World Cup fluff and Sir Alex thinks the World Cup is worse than going to the dentist, so get back to some top flight Bundesliga action!
Friday, 3 December 2010
FC St Pauli v Kaiserslautern
The Red Devils have been slightly impressive in the goal-scoring department that past few matchdays. After embarassing VfB Stuttgart by coming back from a 3-0 deficit to earn a draw, Lautern put 3 more past a young Nuremberg club and 5 past a disappointing Schalke 04 side.
This match is at the Millerntor Stadion, where St Pauli have been just as poor as it has been on the road. The Buccaneers will be without suspended defender Markus Thorandt–red card in last week’s match–so St Pauli will have its work cut out in keeping Kaiserslautern in check.
Saturday, 4 December 2010
VfB Stuttgart v 1899 Hoffenheim
Stuttgart’s coming off a disheartening 4-2 loss to Young Boys Bern in Europa League action midweek and look to rebound against a slightly inconsistent 1899 side. The Swabians are going into this one without key trigger man Ciprian Marica, who rather stupidly earned a red card last week for not keeping his mouth shut.
Hoffenheim need to go on a string of 3 pointers before the Winter Break, as clubs like Bayern and Hannover 96 don’t seem to be going away near the top of the table. A loss or a draw with other results could see Die Hoffe get pushed further away from Europa League qualification.
Wolfsburg v Werder Bremen
A match of two disappointing clubs that were expected to be in the top half of the table rather than in the bottom half. This one might not be pretty as both Grafite for Wolves is out along with Hugo Almeida for Werder.
Werder were already absent Claudio Pizzaro, so it might be left to Marco Arnautovic to be the key player for Werder. Or Marko Marin–a lad who hasn’t scored since Oct 23rd. He’s been on a longer cold streak than most of you lot.
Eintracht Frankfurt v Mainz 05
Thomas Tuchel’s had his young Mainz side looking good the past two matchdays–thanks mainly to Sami Allagui. The Tunisian has been a spark in the attack as a late game substitute and has made a couple keepers look silly lately.
The Bruchweg Boys will have to overcome history for their return of good form to continue, however–Mainz 05 have never beaten Eintracht in Bundesliga play. And Theofanis Gekas might be due. He hasn’t scored a brace since early November–after having scored 2 in 4 of his previous 5 matches.
Borussia Moechengladbach v Hannover 96
Well, Michael Bradley and Steve Cherundolo will be out there. Maybe an appearance from DaMarcus Beasley? Go USA? Ah, whatever.
SC Freiburg v Hamburger SV
Who’s the bigger burger? Hamburg are 7th and trying to move up to Europa League contention. Freiburg are 8th and have been dropping in the table as it has been shipping goals late in matches and taking losses rather than draws. Hamburg might be a bit hamstrung for goals till next year though–striker Mladen Petric was injured in training this week and will miss the final matchdays of the year.
Schalke 04 v Bayern Munich
Crazy Cat Felix Magath better hope his demotions of Jermaine Jones, Hans Sarpei, and Alexander Baumjohann motivate the Royal Blues to perform up to their potential against the Bavarians. Magath just dumped 9.5 million euros worth of salary to his reserve squad and a extra midfielder off the bench–like Jones–might have come in handy for this match against a surging Bayern Munich side.
Franck Ribery’s solid peformance last week–coupled with Thomas Mueller getting into stride–bodes well for a squad facing a club that shippped 5 goals to a mid-talent Kaiserslautern in Matchday 14. A key might be–how well does Bayern’s defending hold against the Hunter, Raul, and Farfan?
Sunday, 5 December 2010
Bayer 04 Leverkusen v 1.FC Koeln
The Werkself seem to have a way of playing in close matches that always come down to a single mistake–mostly from the other side. Although the Billygoats are near the bottom of the table, there is still fight in this side. After taking all 3 points against the Swabians due to a late Podolski penalty conversion, Koeln drew Wolfsburg last week–so Frank Schaefer seems to be getting what he can out of his charges.
And, as Leverkusen have previously drawn with clubs like Werder and Bayern–who didn’t mind getting stuck into tackles during the match–it would be unsuprising if a scrappy Koeln side found a way to at least snatch a point from the Champions League aspirants in this one. GK Rene Adler for Bayer will be out and there’s a chance the Billygoats go without Prince Poldi–knock during training–so don’t expect much from this match.
1.FC Nuremberg v Borussia Dortmund
Prior to last week’s capitulation to Mainz, Der Club looked like it might be a good match for Dortmund. Here are two clubs with lots of young potential all over the pitch–but BvB have been unrelenting in showing its quality week in, week out. Dieter Hecking’s side is on a 3 match pointless streak–expect Dortmund to increase it to 4.
The only thing Nuremberg might have going for it is that Lukas Barrios will not be available for Dortmund due to injury. Without his running mate, does Kagawa continue to stab at the center of the attack or does Nuremberg benefit from being able to close down on Kagawa and cut out the passing games with Goetze?
So, there you have it–a completely lazy attempt to wake you from your hating Sepp stupor. Buck up lads and lasses–England’s got the Champions League Final in 2011 and Germany has it in 2012. Forget Russia and Qatar.