GERMANY: Half Dress Rehearsal for Showcase in Wembley

Germany

Borussia Dortmund entertained Bayern Munich in the clash of the Bundesliga titans yesterday evening local time, where literally nothing was at stake except for their pride.  Bayern Munich clinched the title four weeks ago in Frankfurt, leaving Dortmund with nothing to chase, except for Bayern’s scalp.

FC Bayern go into this showdown five league matches without a win against Dortmund with the Yellow-Blacks dominating them time and time again in the league. However this winless streak against Dortmund continues with a 1-1 draw in a tense match akin to an illegal cockfight where everything dramatic happened. A penalty, a handball, a red card, goals and face-to-face confrontations and a myriad of yellow cards were brandished in the Signal Iduna Park.

Both the Bundesliga crown jewels fielded a relatively weakened side following their Champions League exertions in midweek, where stars like Franck Ribery, Philipp Lahm, Marco Reus and Mats Hummels were rested paving the week for the fringe players to show their abilities.

The match began in a classic confrontation of the sides’ powers where the ball was virtually contained and never passed through the box until Kevin Grosskreutz’s tremendous opener courtesy of Jakub Blaszczykowski’s cross right after 10 minutes of play.

Barely giving up, Bayern’s second string showed their power following Rafinha’s pinpoint cross from the middle to find Mario Gomez heading into home right around the 23rd minute mark.

The spills won’t end there when Jerome Boateng conceded a penalty with a not-so-obvious handball, but Champions League hero Robert Lewandowski could not find the net when Neuer proved his worth choosing to right corner to save his side. Well into second half though, Rafinha basically imploded with an elbow to Blaszczykowski’s, getting a second yellow almost immediately after receiving a first only moments ago. Tempers flared as Rafinha probably felt the injustice but it was the confrontation between Matthias Sammer and Jurgen Klopp that stole the spotlight from Rafinha’s telenovela-styled complains.

Sammer was asking Rafinha to step out of the pitch quietly but Klopp’s meddling with the Brazilian rightback to get out probably surprised Sammer’s “motherly” instincts to be protective of his own players.

The match ended with a deserved draw when both teams played so valiantly throughout, especially with Bayern’s handicap. Considering that even a reserve Bayern and Dortmund could cook up so much drama over a league match, we should all expect even more of a fight in the Home of Football.

Both sides will undoubtedly field their strongest side, but let’s hope of Mario Gotze’s speedy recovery for the final to face an immense fight against his future employers. All set and ready to go; let’s hope for a delicious matchup between these two German giants in their fourth match against each other in this current season. Let’s cross our fingers and hope that no one will get brutally hurt.

AziziMuhammad

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