Match Day 5 Recap
Bayern Munich 4-0 SC Paderborn
It was a scoreline that was not even all that reflective of just how dominant a performance Bayern put on in front of a home crowd hungry for a statement win like this. It was David vs. Goliath. Humans vs. Cylons. Greeks vs. Xerxes's Invading Persian Army. We went up against the league leading giants from Paderborn and put on an epic display.
I hope my veiled attempt at sarcasm is getting through. Yes, Paderborn were the league leaders, but that was after Matchday 4, was on goal differential, and despite them having not really played anybody of note. They are still a newly promoted side, and we are who we are (see what I did there?). Then, we did what we absolutely should have done which is crush them.
Mario Götze got the scoring off to a start on a brilliant through ball from Arjen Robben, a deft backheel pass from Thomas Müller which set up Götze to fire off a perfect curling shot that squeaked just inside the near post. It was exactly what we've been hoping to see more of from Mario since his much ballyhooed transfer last summer. Not too long after that, Lewandowski followed with a brilliant goal from pretty good range which showed not only an incredible first touch but also the ability to deliver a quick but powerful strike with a defender right on him. Götze, not to be outdone, completed the brace with a well earned goal in the 78' and Müller topped it off with a close range strike which showed off his insane awareness of not only where the ball is but where it's going to be.
Tip O' The Cap: Thomas Müller. He had a goal and was great on the attack all match long. Nothing spectacular, but exactly what we've come to expect of Tommy
Subtle Golf Clap: Arjen Robben. Markopolo put it best. Watch our game against Hamburger where Robben didn't play and then watch this one. It's a completely different looking squad, and that's not a coincidence
Standing Ovation: Xabi Alonso. He was effing everywhere. It was like playing "Where's Waldo" when all the guys on the page are Waldo. Completed an insane number of passes this game and as important as Robben was on the attack, Xabi was for the other 2/3rds of the pitch.
And The Meister Goes To: Mario Götze. No, it's not just because he had a brace, although that certainly does help. He played this game with a newfound sense of confidence that I didn't see enough of last year. While Robben was busy harrying Paderborn's left flank, Mario was killing them in the middle and on the right. He was shooting the ball with confidence, made some deft passes and seems to be gelling with his teammates remarkably quick so far this season. I'm sure Xabi and Robben will win many more "Meisters" this season, but this one goes to Mario.
Hoffenheim 3-3 SC Freiburg
A high scoring affair at Wirsol Rhein-Neckar Arena as Freiburg jumped out to an early 2-0 lead with goals in the 31' and 33', both from Mike Frantz. Hoffenheim didn't wait long to answer back with a 44' goal from Tarik Elyounoussi. Sebastian Rudy then drew Hoffenheim level in the 63' with a goal. Freiburg pulled ahead with a goal from Vladimir Darida in the 75', only to be sent off with a straight red six minutes later. Down a man, Freiburg's defense broke and Hoffenheim again drew level in 90'+3 with a goal from Janik Vestergaard to please the home crowd.
Werder Bremen 0-3 Schalke
Schalke ran roughshod over Bremen to pick up some important away points with three second half goals. Wunderkind Max Meyer opened the scoring in the 48' only to be followed three minutes later by Roman Neustädter. Tranquillo Barnetta put the cherry on top with an 85' goal to seal the deal and disappoint the Weserstadion crowd.
Mainz drew first blood against Frankfurt with a Shinji Okazaki goal in the 41' and made it 2-0 in the 44' from Jonas Hoffman. However, Frankfurt answered right back with a 45'+1 goal from Alexander Meier. Frankfurt would eventually pot the equalizer in the 82' from Haris Severovic much to the delight of the Commerzbank-Arena crowd. It should be noted that Shinji Okazaki is at the top of the Bundesliga scoring table with 5 goals in 5 matches
Borussia Dortmund 2-2 Stuttgart
Injuries, I think, are finally rearing their ugly head at Signal-Iduna Park. You can't play that many matches in one week's span with that depleted a roster and not expect to hit some potholes. To Dortmund's credit, this one could have gone a lot worse. Stuttgart actually looked in control most of this game and got out to a 2-0 lead with goals from Daniel Didavi off a corner in the 48' and again in the 68' off of some sloppy defending by Schmelzer. However, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang got one back in the 73' off a great cross from Lukasz Piszczek. Ciro Immobile played the hero for Die Schwarzgelben in the 86' with the equalizer off a free kick from Schmelzer to save a point.
Leverkusen is finally done making me look dumb by picking them as my surprise team. This wasn't a pretty win, but it was a win none the less. Son Heung-Min scored the lone goal in the 33', and it turned out to be all they would need as they held off a scrappy Augsburg side that managed to get 11 shots, 4 of them on goal. All in all, it was a pretty evenly matched game, that was well played by Augsburg in BayArena.
Borussia Mönchengladbach 1-0 Hamburger SV
Hamburger's scoreless streak continues, as does their tailspin nightmare start to this season which could very well wind up seeing them relegated for the first time since the Bundesliga began. Max Kruse got an early 25' goal, and Gladbach cruised from there. Hamburger only managed to get one shot on goal despite having the slight edge on possession with 51% and completing 335 passes. Their attack seemed lifeless, which made Julian Green's omission pretty puzzling (he isn't injured is he?).
Hannover 1-0 Köln
Hannover got an early 6' goal from Joselu which turned out to be all they needed to hold off the newly promoted side. Koln, despite the loss, played pretty well. As a team, they completed their passes with 80% accuracy, which is saying something since they had 483 of them. They just couldn't break through the Hannover defense, but if they keep playing like this, they'll come away with points more often than not.
Hertha Berlin 1-0 Wolfsburg
Solomon Kalou got the lone goal for Berlin in the 33', as they delighted the home fans at Olympiastadion. Wolfsburg grossly outplayed Berlin (this seems to be a theme this week....) completing 462 passes to Berlin's 125 with 77% accuracy and having the edge in shots 13 to 3. They also utterly dominated possession with 70%. Sometimes, that's just how the game works. You can outplay a team in every facet of the game except for one; the scoreboard. Berlin should feel good about this win over a superior squad but not too good. They didn't exactly display a winning formula.
The Other Beer Of The Week!
Since it's only been three days, I'm going to go ahead and skip the Bayern News Roundup. But, since I love beer, I'm going to pounce on the opportunity to talk about another beer. This time, I'm going full on Pumpkin with Starr Hill's Boxcarr Pumpkin Porter. Most pumpkin beers are ales, copper in color, and heavy on the nose (and a lot of them suck). Every fall I go on a beer exhibition trying to find pumpkin beers that have that perfect balance of pumpkin spice with enough of a hop or malt backbone that still tells you "hey, this is still a beer, dammit." Well, Starr Hill, from Charlottesville, VA hasn't found that perfect balance, but they've come pretty darn close. Boxcarr has a great aroma to it, a full body, nice rich dark color, and a subtle pumpkin spice finish, but it doesn't overdo it as some other breweries have. It's rare to find a pumpkin beer made into a porter, and frankly I love the idea. It's finally fall, and a beer with some body and flavor to it is just perfect for this season