FC Bayern Munich: Bring On Mainz!
When Mainz defeated Bayern in 2009, the board knew something had to change. (They realized by then that Louis Van Gaal was no good.) So, they signed the Dutch ace Arjen Robben from Real Madrid. The rest is history.
Mainz decided that getting Bayern to sign Robben wasn't enough- they needed to convince Bayern to get a good defence together. So, they inflicted Bayern with a home defeat- Bayern's first and only home defeat of the current season. The score-line was 1-2 that day but in truth could have been a lot worse. Bayern's goal was a hapless own goal by Mainz.
Bayern, two weeks ago, collapsed horribly against Koeln. Mario Gomez at half-time, tugged his shirt in front of Koeln defender Youssef Mohammed to indicate that the game was over and it was time for shirt-changing. Unfortunately for Mr.Gomez- who despite being the top-scorer in the Bundesliga and second top-scorer in the Champions League, can't seem to score in games when Bayern struggles- saw his team give up three goals in the space of 45 minutes for another away defeat.
The following week, with Franck Ribery and Arjen Robben back in the starting eleven, Bayern put Hoffenheim to their knees. Bayern won 4-0 via goals from Mario Gomez in the second minute, Thomas Mueller and a double from Arjen Robben.
This game starts a series of matches in which victories are a must for Bayern. Louis Van Gaal will be happy to have Mark Van Bommel's probable successor Toni Kroos back on the training pitch. Diego Contento also trained this week. Bayern plays Mainz, Hanover and Dortmund in the league, Inter in the Champions League and Schalke in the German Cup semi-final in the upcoming weeks. Van Gaal's job is on the line and he must get the maximum number of wins from these matches.
Will Bayern beat Mainz?
One man who probably would like to see the back of Van Gaal is Miroslav Klose. He is looking fit and sharp in training but he doesn't get any playing minutes. Even when Bayern is cruising and Gomez runs out of steam, Van Gaal refuses to give the German legend a run-out. Defender Breno is in a similar situation as Van Gaal enjoys playing players out of position- particularly Anatoliy Tymoshchuk. The Ukrainian couldn't get a look-in in defensive midfield but he plays regularly as a central defender.
Mainz drew against Bremen and followed it up with a 4-2 loss at Koeln. Koeln's home stadium, the RheinEnergie, has become somewhat of a fortress since Frank Schaefer took charge of the Billy Goats. Mainz will be hoping to do a double over Bayern. While I think that Bayern will be tough to beat with Robben and Ribery in the side, I don't expect Bayern to run away with this.
Prediction: Mainz 1-3 Bayern
You guys might want to try out this piece about Van Gaal: Link
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