Match week 5 in the Bundesliga kicked off this midweek with four games being played on Tuesday night and the remaining five on Wednesday night. TheHardTackle reviews the thrills and spills in the weekly column Beer And Bratwurst
THE CHAMPIONS LEAK THREE AT THE BACK AGAIN
German champions Borussia Dortmund were held to a thrilling draw by Eintracht Frankfurt on Tuesday at the Commerzbank-Arena. The match-up between these two exciting sides lived up to its expectations with quality exchange of shots on goal in the opening minutes. Dortmund slowly got into their groove and took control with the help of two brilliant goals in the space of four minutes. Right back Lukasz Piszczek’s shot took two wicked deflections to put off Kevin Trapp and Reus’ screamer in the 28th minute came as an end result of a good move. The teams went into the break with Dortmund clearly in the ascendency.
Frankfurt to their credit came out with all guns blazing after the break. Inui jinxed through the defense to find Aigner just outside Dortmund’s box, who slotted in coolly to find the corner of the net. Provider turned scorer in a minute when Inui, unmarked headed in past Weidenfeller to level the scores. The match opened up after this with some free flowing play by both teams. Substitute Mario Gotze made it three for the visitors with a sublime finish, capitalizing on an error by Frankfurt’s center back Anderson in the 54th minute. Anderson was to make amends for his mistake when he equalized for his side from an Oczipka cross 17 minutes before time.
Subotic came close to getting Dortmund’s fourth towards the end of the game when he tried an audacious overhead kick that missed the target by inches. The game ended with no further goals meaning Frankfurt maintains an unbeaten start to the campaign. Klopp’s side will no doubt be relieved but with points dropped again, they will know that seven points separate them and table toppers Bayern .
WOLVES TAMED BY RAMPANT BAVARIANS
A 3-0 victory for Bayern saw them hold onto their first position after Frankfurt and Dortmund played out a 3-3 draw. A sellout crowd at the Allianz Arena saw their home team take control right from the kick-off showing no signs of exhaustion after a hectic last week. Bayern brought in three changes in Ribery, Shaqiri and Martinez to the side that beat Schalke over the weekend. Last week’s man of the match, Mueller was ruled out with a flu and midfielders Kroos and Gustavo were benched in favour of Shaqiri and Martinez. Bayern lined up with Shaqiri playing behind Mandzukic and Ribery assuming his usual role at left wing.
Bayern should have been one up in the third minute itself, when Schweinsteiger rattled the post from four yards out after Dante headed the ball down to him. Schweinsteiger then struck the other post in the 18th minute with a thirty yard screamer. Third time proved lucky for Schweinsteiger when Ribery’s cutback from the right went past the ball watching Naldo for the midfield maestro to put the ball in between Diego Benaglio’s legs and into the net. Bayern’s excellent midfield then dominated possession in the first half to keep the score in their favour at the break. Benaglio saved Wolfsburg further blushes when he denied Mandzukic and Robben in the first half with some excellent saves to keep the score to one – nothing.
The second half started out similar to the first with Bayern pressing forward constantly. 58 minutes on the clock and a Badstuber lob up front found Shaqiri. The versatile attacker skinned Naldo on the left flank to produce a beauty of a cross to find Mario Mandzukic. A weak challenge by Rodriguez could not prevent the Croatian international from doubling Bayern’s lead.
Victory was sealed 7 minutes later, when Lahm finding himself in ample space delivered a pin point cross to Mandzukic to head in Bayern’s third and his fifth of the season. The game ended with Bayern maintaining their 100 % start to the season and beckoning more frustration for Felix Magath’s side.
HAMBURG FAIL TO CAPITALIZE AGAINST GLADBACH
Hamburg failed to convert their on pitch supremacy into three points against Gladback on Wednesday. Both Hamburg and Gladbach opened up with some entertaining football in a match both new they had to win to keep up with the herd. Ex-Tottenham playmaker Rafael van der Vaart opened his account and the score in the 23rd minute with a brilliant looping effort over the diving Marc-Andre ter Stegen from the left flank. The goal seemed to have woken up the home team and they fought back well to level things through Martin Stranzl who headed in a corner in the 39th minute.
Artjoms Rudnevs cut short the home team’s celebrations 6 minutes later to take Hamburg into the lead. Rudnevs and Illicevic were both left unmarked at the near post by some poor defending by Gladbach and Rudnevs couldn’t have missed.
The second half couldn’t have started better for Hamburg with Gladbach reduced to 10 men when their first half goal scorer saw a straight red. The half also saw a Van der Vaart effort hit the framework and Hamburg had another goal disallowed for offside. Despite dominance, Hamburg failed to find the net again and were made to pay when Alvaro Dominguez headed in an Arango free-kick to salvage a point. The result leaves Hamburg with only 4 points from 5 games and placed 14th.
Schalke 04 bounced back from their weekend loss to Bayern with an emphatic win over Mainz at the Veltins Arena. Farfan gave the home side the lead via a penalty in the first half and the win was cemented 10 minutes before time when Lewis Holtby headed in Fuch’s cross. Young Finnish forward Teemu Pukki scored his first of the season in the dying minutes to place Schalke at 4th place in the table.
Stuttgart continued to falter when Hoffenheim literally strolled past their opponents at the Mercedes-Benz Arena. Goals from Takashi Usami, Joselu and Fabian Johnson compounded Stuttgart’s misery who sit second from bottom in the table.
Bayer Leverkusen and Werder Bremen notched up routine wins and so did Fortuna Dusseldorf over their fellow new comers Greuther Furth.
1. Bayern Munich have set a new Bundesliga record by scoring 17 goals and conceding just 2 in their first five games.
2. Fortuna still remains the only team in Europe’s Big 4 this season not to concede a goal. Will this run end anytime soon?
3. 37 goals were scored in the Bundesliga match week 5.
4. Barring three games, the rest saw the winning teams scoring a total of 18 goals as compared to 2 goals by the losing teams.
PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Szabolcs Huszti: The Hungarian left winger is the pick for player of the week. He was instrumental in the build up of Hannover’s first goal and added one of his own in the 29th minute. The second half saw him in an unstoppable mode as he set up Ya Konan for Hannover’s and 4th. A constant menace on the left side, Nurnberg’s defenders found it hard to keep up with his blistering pace.
FLOP OF THE WEEK
Naldo : The experienced Brazilian center back Naldo endured a torrid time against Bayern Munich. He was guilty of ball watching and allowing Schweinsteiger to slip in behind him for Bayern’s first goal. Shaqiri turned him inside out before delivering the cross that led to the second goal. Naldo and his partner in crime Emanuel Pogatetz were both guilty of letting Mandzukic slip in between them and head the ball in. It’s quite evident that Naldo and Pogatetz lack communication and a basic understanding of each others play at the back. Felix Magath should look to fix this as soon as possible.
GOAL OF THE WEEK
37 goals were scored in this edition of Bundesliga and some of them were absolute screamers. Choosing from these belters was a hard task, but Rafael van der Vaart’s stunning half volley is the cream of the crop.