FC Bayern Munich: Recent Friendlies, Hoeness' Words and Liga Total Cup Preview
Bayern Munich has played two friendlies recently and has the Liga total! Cup coming up later this week. Let's take a look at the club's latest news.
FC Bayern 15-0 Paulaner Traumelf
Against their lower-ranked opponents, Bayern’s football flowed. The first half was an exhibition of perfect football.
Thomas Mueller, Xherdan Shaqiri and Mario Mandzukic all scored. Philipp Lahm converted the penalty awarded to his side. The pick of the goals was perhaps scored by Mueller when he collected a pass from a teammate who was about 30 yards away, rounded the keeper and slotted in.
In the second half, Bayern added another eight. Mario Gomez was introduced, and he, as usual, fluffed three great chances before scoring five goals. Toni Kroos netted twice. The pick of the goals came from Franck Ribery, when he beat the keeper from the halfway line.
In the first half, Manuel Neuer had nothing to do. Following Daniel Van Buyten’s introduction into defence, the opposition had a few chances to score in the second half but couldn't manage a goal.
Unfortunately, Diego Contento injured himself in this match. How long he will be out for will depend on his evaluation after ten days.
Kaiserslautern 2-3 Bayern
This was a classic Bayern display. Kaiserslautern rarely got a sniff off the ball, yet Bayern conceded twice. In the first half, Bayern stagnated at times, failing to create clear-cut chances. Thomas Mueller, who had a good game, including an array of shots close to the target, got the scoring underway.
Arjen Robben passed to Mario Gomez, who completely fluffed the chance. Mueller was quick enough to react and placed the ball into the back of the net.
However, Kaiserslautern equalized. A Luiz Gustavo foul forced the referee to award a free-kick to FCK outside the box. Florian Dick stepped up and fired; the ball sailed past Manuel Neuer into the back of the net.
In the second half, Jerome Boateng’s introduction improved the defence. Bayern’s second goal came following a mix-up between the Kaiserslautern players. The ball eventually found Mueller, who passed to Emre Can. Can sent the ball into an empty net.
The third Bayern goal involved beautiful build up play. Mandzukic found Lahm, who passed to Shaqiri to complete the scoring.
Kroos collected a pass from Neuer towards the end of the match. He saw himself robbed by Itay Shecter. Shecter had only Neuer to beat and did so with aplomb.
Bayern still has to make some changes ahead of the new season because the problems from last season remain. Also, Luiz Gustavo has featured as a full-back quite often in pre-season. Heynckes is perhaps trying to find an alternate for that position due to injuries to Contento, Rafinha and Alaba.
Uli Hoeness' Kind Words
Uli Hoeness recently spoke about Mario Gomez. According to him, Gomez is "good but not very good." He praised both the new strikers as well. Gomez might not start the season as both Mandzukic and Pizarro have looked good in preseason. Mandzukic always displays smartness with his play, while Gomez has fluffed some wonderful opportunities when playing.
Herr Hoeness also said that the club's motto, "Mia San Mia," is over used. Here, nobody can argue with him.
The phrase roughly translates to "we are who we are." Recently, Bayern just have not been themselves. They have been anything but themselves. Bayern is associated with grit, determination and, of course, trophies. In the last two years, trophies haven't come by, and even passion has been missing.
LIGA total! Cup Preview
(And yes, as funny as it looks, that is how the competition’s name is spelled)
The competition, taking place on August 4 and 5, comprises of Bremen, Dortmund, HSV and Bayern. The host this year is Hamburg. The games will therefore take place in the Imtech Arena. Each match will last for only 60 minutes with each half comprising of thirty minutes of play.
Dortmund needs no introduction, of course. Their major signings of this season include Marco Reus. Shinji Kagawa’s departure is obviously a major blow. Julian Schieber signed from the champions of 2007, VfB Stuttgart.
Friendly wins have been hard to come by for them, at least outside Germany. Dortmund’s aims for the coming season will include a round of 16 berth in the Champions League after last season’s horrendous showing, which was blamed on injuries and inexperience.
Bremen’s signings include Theodore Gebra Selassie, one of the Czech stars at the Euros who impressed with his displays. Nils Petersen has moved on loan from Bayern while Elijero Elia has moved from Italian champions Juventus.
Bremen had an awful season last time out. It remains to be seen whether Bremen can challenge for the Bundesliga again as they had done in previous seasons.
Hamburg just about survived relegation last season. Thorsten Fink will look to avoid any repeats at any cost. Rene Adler and Tobias Mikkelsen have been signed.
Mladen Petric and David Jarolim are both departing the club. Petric is one of the heroes of the club and will be greatly missed. Jarolim at one point captained the club.
In the first round of matches, Bayern will play Bremen, while in a repeat of last season’s Bundesliga opener, Dortmund will take on HSV. The winners will play the final of the competition, while the losers will battle it out for third place.
Bayern participated last season as well. They lost out to HSV and then played Mainz for third place. They won the match on penalties.
We are already into August. The season opener is scheduled for the 12th when the Ligapokal takes place between Bayern and Dortmund. The DFB Pokal first round is scheduled for the 20th, and the first Bundesliga match is on the 24th against newcomers Greuther Furth.
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