The Weltmeisterliga (“World Champion’s League”) opened up with some interesting results, but nothing earthshattering.
Wolfsburg gave defending champion Bayern München all they could handle. Bayern started on strong, but lacked some bite. They eventually got the lead with help from two of the World Cup stars, and looked about to over power the VWs. But ex-Bayern forward Ivica Olic pegged one back, and Wolfsburg got back into the match. They were almost good for a point, and a “legendary” moment happened.
An unbelievable miss by Junior Malanda: on a rebound off the cross bar he managed to miss the open net from about 3 feet out!!
With that, Bayern managed to ride out the storm and get the points. You’d have to say it was Bayern as usual, nothing indicates that they can’t run away with the title again this season. Wolfsburg gets a moral victory, and certainly showed that they can be a force in the league.
Something almost equally amazing in Dortmund: Leverkusen’s Karim Bellarabi scored a Bundesliga record by opening the scoring in 9 seconds. (This borke the previous record off 11 seconds held by Giovane Elber and Ulf Kirsten, two famous names from the past). He beat Durm to Boenisch’ pass and toe poked it home. That stunned the Neons, and the Aspirins proceeded to play a clever cat and mouse with their hosts before the coup-de-grace: 5 minutes into injury time Stefan Kiessling scored and secured an excellent Leverkusen win. Despite some periods of heavy pressure, Dortmund didn’t create enough chances. For BVB, they need to do better. A solid effort by teh Aspirins, who once again prove that they have what it takes to become Vizekusen. They will need to grind out matches to prove that they can actually challenge for the title though.
Could be a mini-crisis in Schalke already. They stunk in the Cup and then blow the opener. They looked to be working their way to an away win in Hannover, but the 96ers struck and the Blues were stunned, unable to react. After two crap results, if they don’t impress next week at home – against Bayern no less – there could be some disgruntled fans out for blood.
Overall a decent match in Hoffenheim, where the hosts used a one-two punch to decide the match against last year’s surprise Augsburg.
Good result for Bremen on the road in Berlin. Hertha was dominating the game and looked to have things sewn up, but then suddenly collapsed and Werder struck quickly. The visitors then regrouped and withstood late Berlin pressure to grab a precious away point.
Frankfurt prevailed over Freiburg in a rather entertaining match, where both teams had decent chances. This was Thomas Schaaf’s first game in charge of Eintracht, the long time Bremen legend having accepted the challenge of rebuilding the Frankfurters. Not completely convincing, so we’ll have to see. Freiburg figures to struggle again, but at least looked positive.
Köln is back in the Bundesliga, and faced the oldtimer HSV. Hamburg needs to show at lot more than last year’s bare survival, and looked decent in the 1st half. In the 2nd period, Köln realized that HSV was nothing special and began to assert control, but a scoreless draw seems about right. Both teams will have to do more if they don’t want to get into trouble.
Paderborn opened their first Bundesliga season with a draw against Mainz. I wouldn’t expect SCP to last more than this season, and with a small stadium, they lack financial resources to do much. But they played hard, and almost pulled out a win. Unfortunately, Hünemeier, who had given SCP the late lead, committed an unnecessary fould 4 minutes into injury time, gifting Mainz a penlaty which they used to salvage a point.
Gladbach dominated against Stuttgart, but looked to lose, as they wasted tons of chances, and VfB struck when they had theirs. But in the last minute Wolrd Cup winner Christoph Kramer nailed an equalizer to at least save Gladbach a point. Both bteams have a lot of questions this season. For Gladbach, can they start translating their talent into points? Stuttgart obviously has a lot to prove after a crap last season, but at least look decent on paper.
Attendance was pretty decent 444,818 (avg 49,424), sellouts in München, Hannover, Dortmund,Köln. Figure on Paderborn with their small stadium to keep numbers down this year.
Bayern München - VfL Wolfsburg 2:1 (1:0) 71,000 * 1:0 T. Müller (37., Robben) 2:0 Robben (47., Lewandowski) 2:1 Olic (52., Vieirinha) TSG Hoffenheim - FC Augsburg 2:0 (2:0) 23,792 1:0 Szalai (33.) 2:0 Elyounoussi (35., Roberto Firmino) Hannover 96 - FC Schalke 04 2:1 (0:0) 49,000 * 0:1 Huntelaar (47., Choupo-Moting) 1:1 Prib (67., Bittencourt) 2:1 Joselu (70., Prib) Hertha BSC - Werder Bremen 2:2 (1:0) 59,672 1:0 Schieber (16., Roy Beerens) 2:0 Schieber (47., Haraguchi) 2:1 Lukimya (53., Junuzovic) 2:2 di Santo (55., Elia) Eintracht Frankfurt - SC Freiburg 1:0 (1:0) 46,200 1:0 Seferovic (14.) 1. FC Köln - Hamburger SV 0:0 (0:0) 50,000 * Borussia Dortmund - Bayer 04 Leverkusen 0:2 (0:1) 80,667 * 0:1 Bellarabi (1., Boenisch) 0:2 Kießling (90. + 5, Bellarabi) SC Paderborn 07 - 1. FSV Mainz 0 2:2 (1:1) 14,284 0:1 Okazaki (33., Geis) 1:1 Kachunga (37.,) 2:1 Hünemeier (87., Bakalorz) 2:2 Koo (90. + 4, penalty, Okazaki) Bor. Mönchengladbach - VfB Stuttgart 1:1 (0:0) 50,203 0:1 Maxim (51., Gentner) 1:1 Kramer (90., Alvaro Dominguez)