Though the most widely known “Fussballgott,” Bastian Schweinsteiger, left Bayern Munich for Manchester United over the summer, faithful Eintracht Frankfurt fans have crowned their striker, Alexander Meier, with the same moniker.
Funnily enough, while Schweinsteiger was plying his trade with his new team against Liverpool over the weekend, Meier was making waves in a hell of a match against FC Koeln. Die Adler ran out 6-2 victors over the Goats due in no small part to Meier’s hat trick.
A hat trick is uncommon enough, but what made this one so special is that the 32-year-old had just returned from a five-month layoff, one in which he still managed to win the league scoring title despite featuring in just 26 matches.
Blessed with an impressive physique, at a statuesque 6’5”, and an everyman demeanor, there is really only one thing wrong with Alex Meier. He sports not one but two man buns. Tragedy.
I kid, I kid about hair dont’s (as I like to call them), but the real tragedy lies in the very serious refugee crisis enveloping Europe. Germany went above and beyond welcoming many when no other country would (though as I write, the Germans have also now closed their borders), and clubs are all doing their parts in making life just a little easier for those affected.
Bayern made the biggest headlines (met with some cynicism) by pledging a million euro, along with German classes, food and soccer training, but other clubs also made huge, generous moves. In Dortmund, refugees were invited to a Europa League match as the club works closely with the city to provide a welcoming atmosphere. Hannover and Hoffenheim both provided kits, supplies and shoes, while Leverkusen and Werder Bremen started initiatives to help with assimilation.
Perhaps the most touching gesture came from Schalke 04 in the way of a video by Gerald Asamoah as he explained how important it is to be human. To feel human. And to unite in our humanity.
Though, sadly, right wing factions still exist in German soccer, their intolerant voices are drowned out by the masses of welcoming supporters. Refugees are welcome.
The whole German fussball world was up in arms after referee Knut Kircher pointed to the spot late in Bayern’s match against FC Augsburg on Saturday. Douglas Costa had gone down in the box, blocked by Markus Feulner, and the linesman called a foul.
If it was a foul, it was admittedly soft as Thomas Mueller struck home past FCA keeper Marwin Hitz to seal Bayern’s fourth win on the trot, keeping them in the league’s second spot behind a resurgent Borussia Dortmund.
Augsburg’s trainer Markus Weinzierl was blisteringly angry as he (and the rest of the world) felt that his team had been robbed of a point. He has an (ahem) point after the stalwart defensive performance that Hitz and center backs Jan-Ingwer Callsen-Bracker and Ragnar Klavan put together; furiously battling off nearly everything Munich threw their way.
It was the latest example of “Bayern-Dusel” – a derogatory term meaning “undeserved luck” (and just one of many leveled against the club by their legions of haters). But, was it really “undeserved?”
FCB assaulted Augsburg with 27 shots (ten on target) to the visitor’s four (their lone shot on goal blistered past Manuel Neuer), while maintaining nearly 80% possession over the course of 90 minutes.
Kircher got in touch with Weinzierl, as well as appearing in every media market, apologizing for the mistake. “I trusted my linesman,” he said. It’s a testament to the hatred for Bayern that he was forced in to such a public apology in the first place.
Bad calls happen all the time across the league. Mistakes are made everywhere. In fact, just that day, Dortmund was also awarded a soft call that absolutely no one got up in arms over. Why is that? I have a theory.
The reason why everybody is so upset about Bayern’s “Dusel” is because everybody watches them play. Everybody. The seething masses that watch in case they get to witness a rare loss as well as the club’s enormous, adoring fan base.
While they might enjoy a slight advantage of calls going their way – all the big clubs enjoy this — the only reason there is a perception that undeserved decisions happen more often for Munich is a sheer numbers of viewers per game.
If Kircher has mistakenly pointed to the spot and no one was there to see it, would it have actually happen?
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