Stoppage Time – International Football Blog

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.

European Leagues Round-Up

Posted in European Football by peterbein on May 9, 2010
Meisterschale

FC Bayern have won the Bundesliga title for a record-extending 22nd time

FC Bayern and Chelsea were amongst the teams crowned national champions in Europe this weekend whilst Italy’s champions-elect FC Internazionale have been taken to the wire by AS Roma who will complete the Serie A season next weekend. In other leagues Real Madrid and FC Barcelona also will fight it out on the last day in Spain after both teams won their Saturday night matches against Athletic Bilbao and Sevilla CF respectively.

FC Bayern München had pretty much sealed the title after the penultimate round of games after they had beaten VfL Bochum at the same time their only title challengers FC Schalke 04 were going down to home defeat against Werder Bremen. On the last day FC Bayern travelled to the German capital to face a Hertha BSC side who were already facing up to the prospect of Second League football next season. This game proved to be a stroll for the Bavarians with goals from Ivica Olić and a brace from Dutch sensation Arjen Robben sealing a 3-1 win in the Olympiastadion where FC Bayern have the chance to complete a domestic double against Werder Bremen in next weekend’s DFB Pokal (German Cup final). Schalke 04 could only draw 0-0 away at 1.FSV Mainz 05 to put a disappointing end to their campaign whilst Werder Bremen gave themselves a boost before the cup final by gaining a point at home to bitter local northern rivals Hamburger SV and clinch the third UEFA Champions League place. Bayer 04 Leverkusen, Borussia Dortmund and a rejuvenated VfB Stuttgart will take their places in the UEFA Europa League next season. As well as Hertha BSC the 2.Liga will be joined by VfL Bochum next season with the possibility of 1.FC Nürnberg joining them should they lose a promotion/relegation play-off to FC Augsburg.

In England it was a topsy-turvy campaign in the Premier League with the leadership changing hands on no fewer than twenty two occasions during the campaign. Thankfully for the Blues of Chelsea FC it didn’t turn out to be twenty three as the Stamford Bridge side won with considerable ease against Wigan Athletic by eight goals to nil. A hat-trick for Didier Drogba and a brace for Nicolas Anelka was supplemented by solitary strikes by Frank Lampard, Solomon Kalou and Ashley Cole to give Chelsea their fourth English championship, their first since the days of Jose Mourinho in 2006. Present Chelsea coach Carlo Ancelotti has a real chance to win the Double in his first season in charge should the Blues do, as expected, win next weekend’s FA Cup final against Portsmouth FC at Wembley Stadium. Chelsea’s title rivals Manchester United saw off Stoke City 4-0 at Old Trafford but the Red Devils only have the League Cup to show for their efforts in the 2009-10 campaign. The top two will be joined by Arsenal FC and Tottenham Hotspur in next season’s UEFA Champions League while Manchester City, Aston Villa and a very disappointing Liverpool FC will be playing UEFA Europa League football next term. At the bottom of the table Portsmouth FC’s relegation was confirmed some time ago and they will be joined in the Championship (second tier) by Hull City and Burnley FC who go straight back down after their maiden Premier League appearance.

SL Benfica sealed their 32nd championship title in Portugal’s Liga Sagres thansk to an Oscar Cardozo double which gave the Eagles a 2-1 home win over Rio Ave. At the same time their only title rivals Sporting Braga could only muster a 1-1 draw on the island of Madeira against a determined Nacional side who ensured that the league title would’ve gone to Benfica even had the league leaders had surprisingly lost at home as Braga needed all three points coupled with a Benfica defeat to win the title. In any case Sporting Braga can be very proud of their efforts as they finished second and, thus, qualify for the UEFA Champions League next season. Deposed champions FC Porto finished three points further back in third and will only play in UEFA Europa League next season along with Sporting Lisbon and Marítimo. At the bottom last season’s surprise package SC Leixões were relegated along with Os Belenenses, both of whom will play in the Liga de Honra next season.

Lionel Messi

Lionel Messi was amongst the scorers in FC Barcelona's 3-2 win at Sevilla CF.

Title races in Spain and Italy must be sorted out on the final day of the season as both the main challengers in both countries won their penultimate fixtures this weekend. On Saturday in Spain both defending champions FC Barcelona and arch-rivals Real Madrid won tough fixtures against Sevilla CF (3-2) and Athletic Bilbao (5-1) respectively. Pep Guardiola’s FC Barcelona side were coasting to a 3-0 lead thanks to goals from Messi, Bojan and Pedro before they allowed the Andalucians back into the game with two goals in the space of sixty seconds from Fredi Kanouté and Luis Fabiano to give the Blaugrana a real scare but the visitors held out for three very important points. Real Madrid were being held at one all with a little under twenty minutes to go before Gonzalo Higuaín opened the floodgates for los Blancos who went on to record a 5-1 win and keep up the pressure on the Catalans. Next week sees FC Barcelona at home to Valladolid and Real Madrid away at Malaga FC on what should be an exciting final day’s action.

In Italy FC Internazionale, who won the Coppa Italia final against AS Roma earlier in the week, thought that they were going to celebrate their fifth straight Scudetto as they were beating Chievo 4-1 with goals from Mantovani (own goal), Cambiasso, Milito and Balotelli, giving the Nerazzurri a healthy advantage whilst nearest challengers AS Roma were losing 1-0 at home to Cagliari Calcio. But in the last twenty minutes Chievo pulled two goals back to give Inter a scare and AS Roma’s talismanic captain Francesco Totti scored twice to give the Giallorossi hope of winning the title with one game left. Next Sunday’s action sees Inter away to already relegated Siena and AS Roma away at Chievo and many will fancy the Nerazzurri to do the domestic Double before meeting up with FC Bayern in the UEFA Champions League on Saturday, May 22nd.