Champions/Europa League Matchday 3: It Takes TwoBy: Jan | October 22nd, 2009
2 Blackouts. Stuttgart continued to show signs of life in their game against Sevilla and they continued to produce stupid defensive lapses, which continually cost them the games. Two such mistakes, coupled with the referee missing an offside position helped Sevilla to a comfortable 3-1 victory.
2 Own Goals. When Bordeaux’s Ciani picked up where Freiburg’s Cha Du-Ri left off during the weekend, I had the feeling, that Bayern might have finally shrugged off all the bad karma, that had plagued them during the Klinsmann season and replaced it with an updated version of Bayern Dusel, in which Bayern don’t even need to score the goals themselves anymore. I was quite wrong with that assumption. Hamit Altintop returned the favor with another own goal, which by that time already put Bordeaux in the lead.*
2 Red Cards. Before Bordeaux took the lead, but after the French champions had equalized, Thomas Müller picked up his second yellow for a late tackle. With Bayern reduced to ten men, there was a small chance for an excuse for some of their poor play in that game, but unfortunately they had already played just as bad with 11 man, so Müller’s red wasn’t just unnecessary, it couldn’t even serve as a scapegoat. Daniel van Buyten eventually capped off a miserable night for Bayern, when he picked up a straight red for a last ditch tackle, which also resulted in Bordeaux’s second penalty.
2 Penalties. The first one was awarded following a foul by Butt, who made up for his mistake with a good save. He then channeled his inner Tim Wiese and saved the second penalty as well. Bayern eventually lost 2-1, still leaving them with a chance to win the head-to-head against Bordeaux when the teams meet next in the Allianz Arena.
2 Draws. Wolfsburg started off well at home against Besiktas, created a few good chances and then slowly lost their grip on the game in the second half. All the more so after their out of form striker Grafite picked up a straight red card twenty minutes from time. A 0-0 draw keeps Wolfsburg in second place, but they face tricky trips to Istanbul and Moscow next. Things looked much better for Werder Bremen, who took a two goal lead in Vienna and appeared on their way to a third straight victory, until the old Werder defense made a surprise cameo appearance and allowed Austria Vienna to draw level and keep the German-Austrian bragging rights firmly south of the border.
2 Bad. Hertha didn’t play all that bad by their current standards, but at the moment even the third worst team in the Dutch Eredivisie finds a way to score a goal against and eventually beat Hertha. And when you are down don’t expect the referee to hand you a lifeline by awarding the penalty, that should have been given following a handball in the box by a Heerenveen player.
2 Injuries. Romeo Castelen and Jerome Boateng were this week’s prominent additions to Hamburg’s impressive sickbay.
1 Winner. That didn’t stop Hamburg grinding out a 1-0 victory at Celtic Park.
2 Late. Hamburg’s win couldn’t save what was ultimately a very below par European week though.
* While looking up the match stats I found out that the goal was eventually awarded to Bordeaux’s Marc Planus.