After the midweek DFB Pokal games, it was back to Bundesliga action this weekend with nine mouth-watering clashes served up for our enjoyment.
Bayern and Leipzig met for the second time in four games, we had both the Rheinderby, and the Main-Rheinderby, a record goal, a late goal, upsets, meltdowns and a change at the top of the table.
This weekend had it all. So, just who were the winners and losers of matchday 10?
Normal order has been restored. Following Bayern’s final league match under Carlo Ancelotti Bayern found themselves five points behind Borussia Dortmund. Three matches under the tutelage of Jupp Heynckes (combined with a BVB blip) and the Bavarians find themselves back on top of the table (for the first time this season) and three points ahead of their rivals.
A second win in a week against RB Leipzig was secured at the Allianz Arena and for the second game running they did so against ten-men following the dismissal of Willi Orban in the first half. Another clean sheet (a third in a row), a second goal of the season for James and at the end of a tough week for Bayern, they can sit back and be very satisfied with the outcome.
A good week for Bayern then, but another tough seven days awaits with a Champions League trip to Celtic before they face Borussia Dortmund next weekend at the Signal-Iduna Park.
It looks like Hannover have a new fan favourite after Togolese striker Ihlas Bebou scored twice to help them to a 4-2 victory over Borussia Dortmund. The 23-year-old finished off a great counter attack five minutes before half time to restore Hannover’s lead after Dan-Axel Zagadou had cancelled out Jonathas’ opener.
Then in the 86th minute with BVB chasing an equaliser at 2-2, Bebou was once again the man on the spot to fire home as Hannover once more countered Dortmund at pace. Racing from just inside his own half, the Hannover forward took his chance brilliantly. It was his first career brace and his first goals since matchday 4 when he scored against Hamburg.
“It was a great feeling for me to score my first double against Dortmund. If it goes well, that’s also great for the team” Bebou admitted after the game.
Matchday 10 saw some very impressive choreo displays from the Bundesliga fans. Top of the list has to be that of the Bayer Leverkusen fans ahead of the Rheinderby against Köln at the Bay Arena. Their ‘Goatbusters’ themed display was just fantastic and in the end they didn’t need Dan Ackroyd, Bill Murray or Harald Ramis to help them. It was enough that they had Sven Bender and Leon Bailey.
Elsewhere Eintracht Frankfurt fans put on a good show ahead of the Rhein-Main Derby celebrating their affection for the ‘Launishe Diva’ (moody diva) with a top display from the stands, while Borussia Mönchengladbach let Hoffenheim know exactly what they thought of them in very blunt terms.
Unbeaten Martin Schmidt
Martin Schmidt is so good at drawing, rumour has it he takes a full set of HB pencils and an A4 pad of paper with him to dugout on matchday. Since succeeding Andries Jonker as Wolfsburg trainer, the former Mainz coach has not been defeated. Having said that, he has also failed to win.
A first defeat looked on the cards on Saturday however with the Wölfe trailing 1-0 way at Schalke in the final minutes. Luckily for Schmidt and Wolfsburg Divock Origi popped up with a 93rd minute equaliser to protect his unbeaten record.
Here at the Bundesliga Fanatic we published an article on Wednesday asking whether Arp was potentially the real deal. Well after scoring his first Bundesliga goal on Saturday, you’d have to say, ‘potentially yes’.
Having only just returned from India, where he was representing Germany at the U-17 World Cup, he was thrust straight into the HSV first-team matchday squad for their trip to Hertha Berlin. Sent on by Markus Gisdol in the 56th minute with the Rothosen 2-0 down, he took just 17 minutes to find the back of the net.
When Papadopoulos headed down inside the Hertha box from a Dennis Diekmeier cross in the 73rd minute, the 17-year-old was clinical with a right-foot volley past Rune Jarstein. It ultimately wasn’t enough to get anything out of the game, but it could well be the first of many more from this youngster.
We all love a ball playing defender, one who can pass out from the back with skill and vision. But sometimes you have to go ugly and just stick the ball in row Z of the stand to clear the danger. On Friday, we saw poor Daniel Brosinski do neither for Mainz as his horrendous defending saw them go 1-0 down to Eintracht Frankfurt.
It was evident at the Opel Arena that Brosinski is really a natural right-back playing at left-back. A hopeful punt forward from Frankfurt should have been dealt with by the 29-year-old, but rather than clearing the ball from danger with his left foot, he chose to shepherd the ball out over the bye-line.
Unfortunately for him, Maruis Wolf was in no mood to give up the cause and won the ball back from the hapless looking fullback. Wolf then fired an inviting ball across the six-yard box, which Stefan Bell turned in for an own goal. Bell was blameless as Sébastien Haller was waiting for a tap-in. The real culprit was Brosinski- it’s just a shame he couldn’t be credited with the own goal.
Köln’s dirty dozen
No, we don’t mean Lee Marvin creating a crack squad of convicts to storm a chateau in a World War II film epic.
Köln’s ‘dirty dozen’ of failed wins away from home became a ‘dirty baker’s dozen’ with their 2-1 loss at Leverkusen in the Rheinderby making it 13 league games on the road without a win.
Their midweek Pokal victory over Hertha could and should have been the tonic to finally turn around their abysmal league form, but Peter Stöger’s side reverted to type and left the Bay-Arena empty-handed.
Again, the first half was promising and they even scored first (Sehrou Guirassy making up somewhat for last week’s horrendous miss), but over 90 minutes they just didn’t have enough in the tank to overcome Leverkusen. This time last year Köln were 6th in the table on 18 points. Today, they find themselves bottom with just two!
Following a blistering start to the season, the wheels seem to be coming off for BVB as they surrendered their place at the top of the table to Bayern after going down to a first away loss of the season at the HDI Arena against Hannover.
Roman Bürki gave away a penalty for the second successive week for the opener and Peter Bosz’s high pressing defensive line was exposed for Hannover’s second and fourth goals. The red card for Dan-Axel Zagadou was made worse when Felix Klaus scored from the resulting free-kick.
BVB’s high line has been dicing with danger for weeks now, and on Saturday they were finally exposed. The defeat combined with results elsewhere has seen Dortmund’s five point lead at the top wiped out, and now Bayern have a three-point advantage. Next week’s Klassiker looks a huge game for the Schwarzgelben now.
When Carlo Ancelotti was fired by Bayern, Julian Nagelsmann’s name was instantly thrown into the ring as the natural successor- the rising young star of the Bundesliga coaching fraternity. Bayern’s decision to go with the trusted old hands of Jupp Heynckes is now looking extremely wise as Nagelsmann s starting to show signs of pressure.
A midweek Pokal exit at the hands of a struggling Werder Bremen was not ideal, but worse was to come with a first home defeat in the league at the hands of Mönchengladbach.
Nagelsmann shockingly let his frustration get the better of him following the Föhlen’s equaliser throwing a filled plastic water bottle into the crowd and accidentally hitting a fan in the head. Granted, he was aiming for a wall, and the fan accepted his apology at the end of the game, but the first cracks are starting to show in the young prodigy as he finds himself out of the top six.
Ralph Hasenhüttl’s lucky jumper didn’t have the desired effect against Bayern. Normally suited and booted, the Leipzig trainer opted for the same ‘lucky’ blue jumper he had worn as the Bulls won against Porto in the Champions League.
It didn’t work as RB went down to a second defeat in four days against Bayern and once more were reduced to ten men. Willi Orban was sent off and they even finished the match with nine players after Naby Keita was forced off late on with an injury after Hasenhüttl had already used his three subs. Like last season, Leipzig have been found wanting in the big matches against Bayern.
The Bundesagentur für Arbeit (job centre) in Bremen may have a new client tomorrow or soon after with a certain Herr A. Nouri seeking new employment. Yet another abysmal performance from the Grün-Weißen in their 3-0 home loss to FC Augsburg has put another metaphoric nail in the coffin of the hapless Werder trainer.
The defeat sees them remain in the bottom two and Werder have now been held scoreless in 7 of their 10 Bundesliga games so far this season. They have picked up just 5 points and based on the displays so far it is nigh on impossible to see how they are going to turn things around under Nouri.
The reaction of the Weser Stadion crowd at the end of the match on Sunday spoke volumes. Augsburg seriously could have scored five or six and Werder were lucky to even get zero.
So Herr Nouri, what qualifications do you have?
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