A week after winning the home match against Kaiserslautern and three days after winning the DFB Cup match in Aachen, the boys from Munich were looking for the third win in a row, this time against their long-time rival Werder Bremen.
Bremen’s season is a less than subpar one so far. The loss of Mesut Özil and a struggling defense desperately waiting for the injured center back Naldo to return have made it their main priority to avoid relegation. Bayern on the other hand needs every point to secure a top 3 spot. This is how the teams started:
– Louis van Gaal hardly changed his squad from the Aachen match, the only difference is Arjen Robben who replaced Hamit Altintop
– Bremen coach Thomas Schaaf’s formation was a puzzle. There were a lot of combinations possible but the one he used wasn’t expected. He went for a 4-4-2 diamond with winger Marko Marin being the second striker.
The match started but the Bayern defense was still sleeping. It took Werder 45 seconds to create the first huge scoring chance but Clemens Fritz was denied by Thomas Kraft. The first minutes were all Bremen, especially Holger Badstuber couldn’t always impress with solid defending but he wasn’t the only one. A quarter of an hour was played when Andreas Ottl decided to shoot but Tim Wiese was there for the save. Ten minutes later, it was Mario Gomez who gave Wiese the opportunity to prove his goaltending abilities. I could continue describing similar situations in front of both goalkeepers because the defenses of both teams were, let’s say weak. They often were worse than that, though.
The second half had just begun when Bremen was awarded a free kick. Per Mertesacker got the ball in the box and because no Bayern player tried to attack him, he scored the first goal of the match, an unnecessary one. Whether it’s Per Mertesacker or Claudio Pizarro, you shouldn’t let anyone control the ball for such a long time near your own goal.
The next 20 minutes were not exactly full of action when suddenly Danijel Pranjic appeared crossing the ball to the unmarked Arjen Robben who didn’t have any problems putting it into the net. Right after the goal, there was a highly controversial handball (or not?) by Luiz Gustavo that could’ve lead to a penalty kick for Bremen but didn’t. Despite watching tons of replays, I still can’t safely say if it directly hit his arm or if his chest was involved.
Another 10 minutes after that incident, Gomez’ shot/pass hybrid was blocked by Per Mertesacker. Unfortunately for the German center back, it went directly into his own net. Second goal for Mertesacker, second goal for Bayern, 2-1 FCB.
It surely sounds weird but the next important event happened another ten minutes later. Thomas Müller with an outstanding interception, he and Klose (who replaced the disappointing Bastian Schweinsteiger earlier) went 2 on 1 against Tim Wiese, one simple pass and Klose scores against his former club.
The rest was Tim Wiese going nuts. Müller broke through once again but the Bremen goalkeeper didn’t want to concede a fourth goal so he decided to jump into Müller. Bruce Lee couldn’t have done it any better. There’s no need to say that a red card was the ref’s answer. But that really was it, Sebastian Mielitz didn’t have to face a single shot in the 3 minutes he played. Bayern wins the match, it can be argued if it’s deserved but in the end, they were the smarter team.
Goals: 1-0 Mertesacker (47′), 1-1 Robben (65′), 1-2 Mertesacker (OG, 76′), 1-3 Klose (86′)
Bremen: Florian Trinks (Marin, 67′), Sandro Wagner (Fritz, 80′), Sebastian Mielitz (Hunt, 90′)
Bayern: Miroslav Klose (Schweinsteiger, 69′), Breno (Gomez, 81′)
Other league matches:
Leverkusen v Hannover 2-0 (Vidal, Rolfes)
Wolfsburg v Dortmund 0-3 (Barrios, Sahin, Hummels)
Nuremberg v Hamburg 2-0 (Simons, Cohen)
Schalke v Hoffenheim 0-1 (Vorsah)
St. Pauli v Cologne 3-0 (Takhi x2, Bruns)
Kaiserslautern v Mainz 0-1 (Holtby)
Stuttgart v Freiburg – Sunday
Frankfurt v Gladbach – Sunday
Next match: Saturday @ Cologne (Bundesliga), 3.30 pm local time