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Bayer Leverkusen

Bayern Ousted as Bayer Join Werder, HSV and Mainz in the Semis


Finally Dusseldorf has come good for visiting dignitaries Bayer Leverkusen. After a poor run of form in the league at the LTU, the Werkself took apart Bayern Munich 4-2 in their temporary home to gain passage to the final four of the DFB Pokal.

Klinsmann tinkered with his lineup a bit as congestion is building up for the Bavarian giants. He pulled Ze Roberto into the left back position to try and shore up a weak position and used Ottl as his replacement in the double six. He then went with a 4-2-3-1 with Klose giving Toni a rest. Overall a pretty strong starting XI, especially as Bayern have long been better suited to this formation, rather than the 4-4-2.

With this in mind, Bayer made easy work of Bayern, slicing through the holders to a 3-0 lead off goals by Helmes, Arturo Vidal and Barnetta. After the third goal, Bayer took their foot off the gas, and almost paid the price as Klinsmann’s substitutions worked wonders and they pulled two goals back in two minutes. The first came when Adler flopped at a cross that Lucio put away and the second came when Klose was left unmarked in the area to finish a perfect Ribery cross.

The final 15 minutes was tense for the home side, with Adler making a couple of superb saves and the defense rediscovering their focus, but a fourth goal from the tireless Kiessling secured passage for Bayer. Bruno Labbadia joins Martin Jol and Thomas Schaaf in the semis.

Hamburg beat Wehen 2-1 at home. But a strong lead was almost squandered in this game, just as it had been in the headline game, when Frank Rost mishandled an easy Schwartz shot to pull the visitors within one with 3 minutes to go. As it stands, a first half goal by Petric and an own goal by Wehen’s Kopilas was enough to see the Dinosaurs through.

Meanwhile, Werder seems to have risen from the ashes after their come back against A.C. Milan and found their scoring touch. They put five past a hot Wolfsburg side at the VW. The game saw braces by Dzeko, Diego and Pizarro in a 7 goal thriller with Werder booking their place in the semis by a score of 5-2.

They are joined by Mainz who upset Schalke last night.

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  1. Poldi

    March 7, 2009 at 6:30 pm

    Yeah, the right defender is definitely Bayern’s weak spot. Lell is just not very good, and Oddo is pretty old and slow (but clever). I read they are interested in Yuri Zhirkov for left back so they can move Lahm to right back. At least Klinsi has some breathing space after yesterday.
    BTW, please excuse my nitpicking!

  2. Double Pivot

    March 5, 2009 at 9:45 pm

    Ah man 🙁

    I was going for expediency. So I had this article out, seconds after the game ended. I let editing slip.

    However, the Ze Roberto comment does stem from all the talk about it being a troubled position. I remember Lell being hung out to dry very recently. Just as Janssen was. It seems to be weak by definition at Bayern.

  3. Poldi

    March 5, 2009 at 6:28 pm

    Sorry, but there are a couple things wrong here: Ze Roberto didn’t play “to shore up a weak position”, Lahm is just injured. Just as Luca Toni is. Even Klinsi isn’t clueless enough to leave those two out if they are fit. Apart from that, it’s LTU arena (not LDU), LTU being a German airline. And it’s Arturo Vidal, Stefan Kiessling and Schwarz. Those bloody strange names…
    Great game and great blog of yours!

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