Stoppage Time – International Football Blog

Germany: Reus to move to Dortmund next season

Posted in European Football by peterbein on January 4, 2012

Marco Reus, the rising star in the German Bundesliga having helped Borussia Mönchengladbach to a respectable fourth place during the winter break, will be leaving the club at the end of the season to play for Borussia Dortmund.

It was announced today on Mönchengladbach’s website that the player will remain at the club for the 2011-12 season before signing a five year deal with the current German champions Dortmund for a transfer fee of 17,5 million Euros.

Having started his career at Rot-Weiss Ahlen in 2007, Reus moved to his current club for the 2009-10 season during which the club sealed a twelfth placed finish. In the following season Gladbach looked set to go down but some fantastic form late in the campaign helped them avoid the drop thanks in no small part to Reus’s goals including one in the promotion/relegation play-off match against VfL Bochum.

Now in his third season with the Rhine club Reus finds himself amongst the league’s top scorers with ten goals, six behind leading scorer Mario Gomez of FC Bayern, and many had been tipping him to leave for the Bavarians before news of his impending transfer to Dortmund broke today.

Germany: Holders Schalke eliminated from Cup

Posted in European Football by peterbein on December 23, 2011

DFB PokalDFB Pokal (German Cup) holders Schalke 04 were dumped out of this season’s competition by Borussia Mönchengladbach following the latter’s 3-1 home win in Wednesday’s Round of 16 tie.

Borussia Mönchengladbach ensured that there would be no repeat triumph for Schalke 04 in this year’s DFB Pokal. Juan Arango gave Borussia the lead on 18 minutes which was doubled ten minutes after the break when striking sensation Marco Reus bagged his first goal of the night. Schalke did make a fight of it and pulled one back through substitute Julian Draxler but the cup holders, who were down to ten men for virtually all of the second half after Klaas-Jan Huntelaar saw red in the 46th minute, saw their dreams for this season go up in smoke as Reus grabbed his second goal with two minutes remaining. Schalke’s night ended with Jermaine Jones also seeing red as the Ruhr Valley outfit went out in sorry fashion whilst Mönchengladbach continue their great season, lying fourth in the Bundesliga standings whilst through to the last eight of the cup.

FC Bayern had Arjen Robben to thank on Tuesday as the Dutchman gave his side a 2-1 win with his goal coming in stoppage time at the end of a tight game against second division VfL Bochum. Giovanni Federico’s 26th minute goal gave Bochum the lead but Bayern, record winners of the Pokal with 15 successes, overturned the deficit with goals from Toni Kroos and Robben with the Bavarians favourites to win “The Pot” once more. SpVgg Greuther Fürth, second in the second division, overcame four-time winners Nürnberg on their home turf with Edgar Prib’s 15th minute strike proving the difference between the sides in a Franconian derby. The visitors saw defender Bernd Nehrig sent off with 25 minutes left to play but Fürth held out and secured a place in the last eight of the cup for the second time in three years.

In another shock Holstein Kiel got the better of 1.FSV Mainz 05 with a 2-0 victory courtesy of an Anthony Ujah own goal and Steve Müller’s 34th minute strike. Fortuna Düsseldorf, the current second division leaders, took Bundesliga champions Borussia Dortmund all the way in their Round of 16 but were unfortunate to lose in a penalty shoot-out following a goalless draw after extra-time. VfB Stuttgart eliminated Hamburger SV in their home Mercedes Benz Arena with Cacau grabbing both goals for the Swabians as they defeated their Hanseatic opponents with a 2-1 victory, William Kvist’s own goal providing a consolation for the visitors. Hertha BSC and TSG 1899 Hoffenheim make up the last eight after getting the better of first division opponents 1. FC Kaiserslautern and FC Augsburg respectively.

QUARTER-FINAL DRAW

Hertha BSC v Borussia Mönchengladbach

TSG 1899 Hoffenheim v SpVgg Greuther Fürth

Holstein Kiel v Borussia Dortmund

VfB Stuttgart v FC Bayern

Ties to be played on 7-8 February, 2012.

Bundesliga Preview: FC Bayern not such big fans of The Hoff

Posted in European Football by peterbein on January 15, 2010
FC Bayern v TSG 1899 Hoffenheim

Ivica Olic quietens the crowd as he scores in the 1-1 draw between Hoffenheim and FC Bayern on the opening day of the 2009-10 Bundesliga

Thankfully, for all fans of Baywatch, FC Bayern have not taken a dislike to cult hero David Hasselhoff. After a shorter than usual winter break the German Bundesliga returns tonight with a modern day rivalry between FC Bayern and nouveau riche club TSG 1899 Hoffenheim.

Since the promotion of the latter into the First League in 2008 there has been no love lost between the two clubs who indulged in public spats last season as both teams were hoping to challenge for the title. Despite winning the unofficial “Herbstmeister” (Autumn champion) title, upstarts Hoffenheim gradually fell away in the second half of the 2008-09 season but, generally, had given the Bundesliga a shot in the arm. Ultimately both clubs had to take a back seat while surprise team VfL Wolfsburg won the title. However, after a slow start this season, both clubs are in a healthy position going into the “Rückrunde” (latter half of the season). The bad blood from last season has been replaced with words of respect from both coaches Louis van Gaal (Bayern) and Ralf Rangnick in a game both teams must win if they’re to build on any hopes of a title challenge. FC Bayern could go top for the first time in 51 matchday rounds (since May 2008) whilst a win for Hoffenheim would see them go into joint sixth with Werder Bremen (seven points behind leaders Leverkusen) before the weekend’s other games.

On Saturday the current “Herbstmeister” Leverkusen will hope to retain the unbeaten record they had at the midway point of the season (Played 17, won 9, drawn 8, points 35) but will have it tough against the league’s surprise package 1.FSV Mainz 05 who have hopes of fighting it out for a European spot. Fourth place Hamburger SV are looking for a third consecutive victory as they face lowly SC Freiburg whilst Werder Bremen will hope to gain revenge for an opening day defeat against Eintracht Frankfurt whose coach, Michael Skibbe, has threatened to quit the club at the end of the season after he accused his employers of lacking ambition due to the lack of funds available for new players during the January transfer window. Ex-Frankfurt coach Friedhelm Funkel has his work cut out at bottom club Hertha BSC who accumulated the lowest number of points ever after 17 games (a measly six) and is up against Hannover 96, a team still suffering from the death of goalkeeper Robert Enke, and who are in danger of being dragged into the “Tabellenkellar” (relegation zone) as they lie in 14th place, five points away from 1.FC Nürnberg in the second automatic relegation spot. Borussia Mönchengladbach will hope to keep up their good form, 13 points from the last seven games, against a VfL Bochum side who currently lie in the relegation play off 16th spot. In the Saturday night game Armin Veh, who has a mixed record since taking over at champions VfL Wolfsburg, will hope for three points at his old stomping ground in Stuttgart, who he led to the 2006-07 championship. Now under new management following the dismissal of Markus Babbel, Stuttgart and their new coach Christian Gross will hope to start ascending up the league to the relative safety of mid-table.

In the Sunday games Felix Magath will hope to keep up the pressure on the top teams as his Schalke 04 side play at home against struggling 1.FC Nürnberg whilst Jürgen Klopp’s Borussia Dortmund travel to 1.FC Köln, for whom local hero Lukas Podolski has only scored one goal in the Bundesliga following his much publicised return from FC Bayern at the start of the season. No wonder then that “Die Geißböcke” (Billy Goats) find themselves as the league’s least prolific team in front of goal having only scored ten times in 17 games.