Bayer Leverkusen 3-0 Hamburg

December 16, 2012

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“BAYER Leverkusen cruised to a victory over Hamburg this afternoon in the final round of 1. Bundesliga fixtures before the winter break. Goals from Stefan Kießling and André Schürrle gave the second-placed home side a deserved 2-0 half-time lead against their visitors, who struggled to get into the game. The away side’s players weren’t helped by the system being deployed by their coach, Thorsten Fink, with Leverkusen’s coaching duo Sascha Lewandowski and Sami Hyypiä playing an extra man in midfield, and getting their players to pressurise the right areas of the pitch.” Defensive Midfielder

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Mancini goes back to the future

December 16, 2012

“This was Roberto Mancini’s 2012 game plan against his 2010 tactics. A comprehensive win for his present against his past showed that while imitation may be the sincerest form of flattery, it did not work for Alan Pardew. Before adopting his 4-2-2-2 formation, Mancini became known during his first full season in charge for fielding three defensive midfielders even though, with Yaya Toure in a more advanced role, it was actually only two.” ESPN


Bayern Munich 1 – 1 Borussia Mönchengladbach: Weathering Tropical Storm Bayern

December 16, 2012

“Bayern ushered in their latest presumptive Bundesliga title with all the fury of a tropical storm, only to have Borussia Mönchengladbach survive with a well-earned 1-1 draw at the Allianz Arena. After Bayern’s 2-0 derby win over Augsburg last weekend, the Bavarians have been all but declared Bundesliga champions (and rightly fully so) for the 2012-2013 campaign, given the 11 point gap between them and Leverkusen, as well as the 14 point gap between them and Dortmund. However, if this final match of the Hinründe was Bayern’s early victory lap, it was uninspiring for Jupp Heynckes’ legendary side. Although Gladbach was “out everything” (shot, possessed, passed, etc.), they played a focused game, mostly limiting Bayern to middling-quality chances on goal. Particularly, Lucien Favre’s Die Fohlen were well-organized and coordinated with their two back lines of four. Gladbach’s got to be happy with their form: two wins and two draws in their last four of the Hinründe.” Bundesliga Fanatic


Liverpool 1 – 3 Aston Villa

December 16, 2012

“Aston Villa exposed Liverpool’s flaws and the flakiness of their challenge for a top-four place by inflicting the Reds’ worst home defeat for more than three years with a 3-1 win. Christian Benteke scored twice, either side of Andreas Weimann’s well-worked goal, before Steven Gerrard’s late consolation as the hosts’ three-match winning run was ended in surprising fashion. It was the first time Villa had scored more than once in any half of league football this season and extended their own unbeaten run to five matches, with only a second away win in 17 away league games.” ESPN