BUNDESLIGA, Round 16

Bayern München continues to march along happily, as it’s rivals basically self-destruct. This time it was Leverkusen’s turn, as they got their balls kicked by struggling Frankfurt.

The champions really had no problems with Hamburg, notching up another ho-hum win. It took them a while to get going, but this one was never in doubt. Bayern left for Morrocco after the match, for the worthless FIFA World Club Championship, and HSV goes back to Hamburg to try and get some more points before winter-break.

Luserkusen managed to eliminate some of the shame as they qualified for the Champions League knockout rounds. Then they went out and delivered another stinker. The Aspirins were completely flat and were totally outplayed by visiting Frankfurt. They were lucky not to be behind, but although they woke up and started attacking furiously, they were nailed by a blitz counter sucker punch. In the end, Leno even had to stop a penalty, while Leverkusen could have played another 30 minutes and not scored. Good win for Eintracht, who needed this desperately.

Hoffenheim was on their way to a great win against Dortmund. The Hoppers were all over the injured ravaged Neons, and in firm control. But then GK Grahl dropped Reus’ conrner kick and Aubameyang ended up with a tap in. This seemed to revive Borussia, and they came out determined in the 2nd half. Hoffenheim was close to getting over-run, but they managed to stave off a loss and overall it was a fair split of the points.

Mainz and Gladbach pretty much delivered a snooze-fest as neither side wanted to take any risks. So a solid kickabout with little to recommend.

Wolfsburg has been playing well, and more importantly, been getting some results. Stuttgart is unpredictable. The VWs get an important win in their press for Europe, but were somewhat lucky. Stuttgart actually controlled most of the game, but Wolfsburg took their chances well.

Hertha BSC continued their happy return to the top flight with a win over struggling Bremen. Overall, it was a pretty entertaining match, and the “Old Dame” of Berlin ended up with a deserved three points. Werder looked much better than their disgraceful showing last week to Bayern, but were eventually done in by defensive mistakes. They’re floating dangerously to the relegation zone, but with a little improvement should be OK.

Augsburg is playing with a new found confidence – confident in the knowledge that there are plenty of teams that suck more than they do. Braunschweig is one of those. FCA attacked furiously for about 20 minutes. Braunschwieg defended firmly, only to be undone by a somewhat questionable penalty. Then it took only 10 more minutes for the Fuggers to wrap up the match. Overall, a good performance by FCA, and par for the course for the visitors.

Schalke hardly played well, but they were home to Freiburg, so they didn’t have to. They applied moderate pressure and waiting for the Breisgauers to screw up, which they managed to do just before half. The Blues then added another for a ho-hum victory against a club that looks like they want to get relegated.

Mein Gott, Nürnberg manages to suck even when they’re not sucking! Der Club was still waiting for a *first* win, but finally looked like they had it wrapped up. Leading 3-0 at half against a stinking Hannover, FCN looked anything but the horrible side they’ve been. Now against anybody else, the 96ers probably would have just laid down and tried to hide in the 2nd half, but this is Nürnberg, so they decided on all-out assault. They did manage a goal, but the visitors defended reasonably well and looked to have weathered the storm. Then shockingly at the death they gave up two goals and the win was gone. All coach Gert Verbeek could do is whine about some questionable referee decisions…Shut the f*&^ up, you wanker!! Yes, it was offsides, but you lost a three goal lead, you need to just shut up. Pretty sad all things considered, because Nürnberg played about 87 minutes of good football.

 	
Hertha BSC	     -   Werder Bremen	        3:2 (2:2)   48,721

                    0:1  Petersen (15., Hunt)
                    1:1  Ramos (17., penalty, Skjelbred)
                    2:1  Ramos (26., Skjelbred)
                    2:2  Hunt (32., Petersen)
                    3:2  Ronny (48., Pekarik)

Bayern München	     -   Hamburger SV	        3:1 (1:0)   71,000 *

                    1:0  Mandzukic (42., Rafinha)
                    2:0  M. Götze (52., Thiago)
                    2:1  Lasogga (87., Jansen)
                    3:1  Shaqiri (90. + 3, Höjbjerg)

Hannover 96	     -   1. FC Nürnberg	        3:3 (0:3)   38,100

                    0:1  Hlousek (30., Hasebe)
                    0:2  Drmic (38., Kiyotake)
                    0:3  Nilsson (41., Plattenhardt)
                    1:3  Bittencourt (60., Huszti)
                    2:3  M. Diouf (87., Sulejmani)
                    3:3  M. Diouf (90. + 2, Huszti)

1899 Hoffenheim	     -   Borussia Dortmund	2:2 (2:1)   30,150 *

                    1:0  Schipplock (17., Roberto Firmino)
                    2:0  Volland (37., Rudy)
                    2:1  Aubameyang (44., Lewandowski)
                    2:2  Piszczek (67., Sahin)

1. FSV Mainz 05	     -   Bor. Mönchengladbach	0:0 (0:0)   34,000 *

FC Augsburg	     -   Eintracht Braunschweig	4:1 (3:0)   28,010

                    1:0  Verhaegh (23., penalty, To. Werner)
                    2:0  Hahn (30., Ostrzolek)
                    3:0  Hahn (33., To. Werner)
                    3:1  Oehrl (48., Ademi)
                    4:1  Halil Altintop (75., Vogt)

VfL Wolfsburg	     -   VfB Stuttgart	        3:1 (1:0)   25,501

                    1:0  Rodriguez (38., direct freekick)
                    2:0  Diego (53., direct freekick)
                    2:1  Ti. Werner (57., Ibisevic)
                    3:1  Perisic (78.)

FC Schalke 04	     -   SC Freiburg	        2:0 (1:0)   60,661

                    1:0  Höfler (44., own goal, Farfan)
                    2:0  Farfan (67., penalty, M. Meyer)

Bayer 04 Leverkusen  -   Eintracht Frankfurt	0:1 (0:0)   26,242

                    0:1  Russ (61., S. Jung)


 1  Bayern München (M, P)	16   14  2  0 	  42:8 	 +34 	  44
 2  Bayer 04 Leverkusen	  	16   12  1  3     32:15  +17 	  37
 3  Borussia Dortmund	  	16   10  2  4 	  37:18  +19 	  32
 4  Bor. Mönchengladbach	16   10  2  4 	  33:17  +16 	  32
--------------------------------------------------------------------
 5  VfL Wolfsburg	  	16    9  2  5 	  26:17  +9 	  29
 6  FC Schalke 04	  	16    8  3  5 	  32:28  +4 	  27
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 7  Hertha BSC Berlin (N)	16    7  4  5 	  25:19  +6 	  25 
 8  FC Augsburg	  	        16    7  2  7 	  20:24  -4 	  23
 9  1. FSV Mainz 05	  	16    6  3  7 	  22:29  -7 	  21 
10  VfB Stuttgart	  	16    5  4  7 	  29:31  -2 	  19 
11  1899 Hoffenheim	  	16    4  6  6 	  36:37  -1 	  18 
12  Hannover 96	  	        16    5  3  8 	  22:29  -7 	  18 
13  Hamburger SV	  	16    4  4  8 	  31:35  -4 	  16 
14  Werder Bremen	  	16    4  4  8 	  21:37  -16 	  16 
15  Eintracht Frankfurt	        16    3  5  8 	  19:28  -9 	  14
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16  SC Freiburg	  	        16    2  5  9 	  14:30  -16 	  11
--------------------------------------------------------------------
17  1. FC Nürnberg	  	16    0  10  6 	  17:33  -16 	  10
18 Eintracht Braunschweig (N)	16    2  2  12 	   9:32  -23 	  8


M = Meister, defending Champion 
P = Pokal, defending Cup winner
N = Neuling, newly promoted

1st line: Champions League
2nd line: Europaliga (+ Cup winner)
3rd line: Playoff with 2.Liga 3rd place
4th line: Relegation to 2.Liga

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