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Schweinsteiger Spares Bayern Munich Blushes Against Basel

Schweinsteiger Brace Puts Bayern Munich In Pole Position For The Round Of 16.

Louis van Gaal’s side took on Swiss champions FC Basel at St. Jakob Park in Basel tonight, with the hopes of kickstarting their season. Bayern Munich have not been on great form domestically, and have only managed two wins in their first six Bundesliga matches. They find themselves ten points off of first place, and are in desperate need of a change in fortune.

Basel fielded a very decent eleven against Bayern Munich, and it is no wonder that they caused Bayern Munich so many problems on the night. Basel boast a wealth of World Cup stars and younger players, and they really do look like a side capable of playing some decent football. Unfortunately, they’ve now lost both of their Champions League matches by scorelines of 2-1, but it shouldn’t be long before they find their European feet.

Costanzo – Inkoom, Ferati, Abraham, Safari – Shakiri, Yapi Yapo, Huggel, Stocker – Frei, Streller

Bayern pressed the Swiss side early on, and had a few decent goalscoring chances that eventually came to nothing. Bayern Munich’s lack of goals has been a recent worry for Louis van Gaal, and the tension created by that lack of goals loomed over the first-half for the Bundesliga giants.

It was FC Basel who drew first blood after 18 minutes through Swiss striker Alexander Frei. Marco Streller attacked the Bayern Munich back-line and used his strength to hold off Holger Badstuber, and then slipped the ball into the path of Frei who curled it into the corner of the net. Unstoppable, really. Basel held their lead into the break, and many Bayern Munich fans would have been quite nervous about their side’s chances in what looked like a team without very much confidence.

Whatever Louis van Gaal said at half-time seemed to work, though. Bayern Munich pressed their opponents in the second-half looking for the equalizer, and got it just before the hour mark when Huggel fouled Thomas Mueller in the area. Bayern Munich were awarded a penalty, and Bastian Schweinsteiger confidently tucked it past Costanzo. The goal seemed to give Bayern Munich a real boost, and they were eager to find a winner. Just four minutes from time, it was Schweinsteiger again who came to Die Roten‘s rescue. Holger Badstuber whipped in a dangerous free-kick, and Schweinsteiger was left unmarked at the back post to tuck it away. A spirited win for Bayern Munich, but they’ll need to remain consistent if they have any chance of retaining their Bundesliga crown.

This weekend, Bayern Munich travel to Borussia Dortmund in what will undoubtedly be a hotly contested fixture. Dortmund have been on flying form and occupy second place in the Bundesliga table, and look on recent form like realistic challengers for the Bundesliga title. Bayern Munich must remain consistent and win that game against Dortmund, or they will be playing a very weary game of catch-up until the season’s end.

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  1. Diriye

    September 29, 2010 at 11:00 pm

    A show down with Nuri Sahin on Sunday is next. What a game!

    To be objective Sahin has been the best midfielder in Bundesliga this season but when Schwe­in­steiger is up for it he is a master in his domain. Sahin also knows knocking Bayern on Sunday would give Dortmund a ten point lead. How Sven Bender fares against the old fox could be a factor as well.

  2. David

    September 29, 2010 at 10:24 pm

    Yeah, as they say, “I have a feeling” that Boateng is going to regret his decision to follow the money, at least so far as his continued development is concerned. If he gets significant minutes, it’ll probably be at fullback, as Kompany & Toure seem entrenched in the middle.

    I’d really hate to see his great potential as a center back flushed down the drain when he could’ve stayed a couple more years in Germany & made his name in the center, then moved abroad w/o other coaches thinking of him strictly as a fullback. Maybe he’s fine with all that, but the mouth waters at the idea of Badstuber & Boateng in the middle for Germany.

  3. Luke

    September 29, 2010 at 5:34 pm

    You’re right David. Aside from one beautiful free kick goal, Badstuber was pretty limited in that phase of the game last season. Part of it has to do with the other talent on the team, part of it was that once Van Gaal decided to put him out at LB, he really had to focus on playing a position that was not natural for him. I think he’s benefiting from his more stable role in the team and developing other phases of his individual game nicely.

    • Dylan Thomas

      September 29, 2010 at 5:48 pm

      I’ve been impressed with him as well. He’s still young, and he’ll still make mistakes, but he’s gaining a lot of valuable experience at the highest level and I think he’ll be a mainstay at Bayern Munich and at the national level for a long time. It’s too bad Jerome Boateng hasn’t made a big impact at City yet, because he’s shown a lot of promise as well.

  4. David

    September 29, 2010 at 1:21 am

    Was I just not paying attention last season? Because I don’t recall Badstuber taking a lot of free kicks. I guess Robben took them when healthy. Badstuber’s must have 3-4 assists already. Perhaps I exaggerate.

    I liked the way Basle attacked Bayern. Made for an entertaining game. It seems no one’s afraid of Bayern until they get their Big 2 back on the field.

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