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Bayern Thrashes St. Pauli, Secures CL Spot

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FC Bayern fans can breathe a sigh of relief, as our worst fears of being stuck in the Europa League will be avoided. Bayern looked a cut above today, stomping St. Pauli by a score of 8-1. Gomez had a hat trick, Robben and Ribery each bagged two, and van Buyten added a goal.

I thought this was the most complete victory of the year for Bayern - we were passing very well, looking aggressive whenever we had a chance to run, and also finishing efficiently. The first 60 or so minutes of the game had Bayern looking superior but still within the realm of normal Bundesliga play, but the last half-hour looked like a game from the early stages of the Pokal where a top-flight team takes on a 3rd-division team. I know I should be more excited by close, hard-fought games, but honestly I love watching games like this.

Gomez got the action started in the early going, pouncing on a St. Pauli mistake:

We'll be back with more goal videos later, this was the only one I could find (we've scored twice since I started drafting this recap). Combined with Hannover's loss vs. VfB Stuttgart, Bayern has clinched a Champions League spot for next year. And because Leverkusen has held to a draw, we still have an outside chance at finishing 2nd and getting a pass straight into the group stage.

Some Points of Importance:

- Everyone looked great today, but I think Robben ought to take home the match ball. He was everywhere, running hard, making great passes, and finishing. He's not known for using his head, so his 2nd goal was especially cool.

- Butt made a great save late in the first half - if St. Pauli gets one there, they're within a single goal, and the whole mood at halftime changes.

- The offense stole the show, but I think our back 4 looked really good as well. St. Pauli could get absolutely nothing going, and we pretty much shut them down every time they took the ball anywhere near our third.

- Other than Bayern (of course), my favorite club is Queens Part Rangers of England. Needless to say, it's been a good day for me. I think I'll go have a beer.

Back with more tonight or tomorrow. Thanks for reading.