Bayern München vs. Freiburg  2 - 1

Report

Coming off an exhausting Champions League triumph over Fiorentina on Tuesday, Bayern struggled to even get inside the Freiburg area in the first half hour.

That proved costly in the 31st minute when Yacine Abdessadki laid the ball off for Cédric Makiadi at the top of the area, and the Congo DR midfielder hammered a 20-yard drive beyond Hans-Jörg Butt.

Freiburg held out nicely until the 76th minute when Dutch winger Robben blasted a free kick beyond goalkeeper Simon Pouplin to level the match at 1-1.

Then, with seven minutes to go, Bayern won a penalty when Ivica Banovic felled Thomas Müller inside the area. Robben converted the spot kick to give Bayern a 2-1 win and to restore the Bavarians' two-point lead atop the Bundesliga.

Article

Bayern were poor admits, goal-scorer Robben

14 March 2010 10:55

MUNICH, Germany (AFP) - Arjen Robben admitted his Bayern Munich side had been tactically poor before the Dutchman hit two second-half goals to seal a 2-1 win over Freiburg to rescue the Bundesliga leaders.

The 26-year-old scored with a direct free-kick and penalty to spare Bayern's blushes as the hosts came from behind at Munich's Allianz Arena and retook top spot in the German league after Schalke 04 had temporarily taken over.

Since joining Bayern from Real Madrid at the start of the season, Robben has got the German giants out of jail several times, none more so than Saturday.

The Dutchman hit the crucial goal at Fiorentina last Tuesday which put his team in the Champions League's quarter-finals despite losing 3-2 in Italy as they went through on the away-goal rule.

Robben's goals give Bayern a two-point lead in the table and keeps them on course for their 22nd German league title, but he admitted his side were poor as Freiburg's striker Cedrick Makiadi had given his team an early lead.

"We were tactically poor in the first half and rarely created space, although it?s always tough against Freiburg," said Robben, who led Munich's attack in the absence of injured French midfielder Franck Ribery.

"They come here and defend with every man, so you have to be finding space.

"The fact they managed to score made it even more difficult."

Bayern have not lost a league game since they were beaten in Hamburg last September and are on a 19-match unbeaten streak in the Bundesliga.

Bayern captain Mark van Bommel, who also scored in Fiorentina last week, said he felt his Munich side were always in control, despite going 1-0 down, because of the confidence they have built up.

"I always felt good about it because we basically controlled the game, It was only a matter of time before we equalised," said Dutchmann van Bommel.

"And we knew once we?d equalised, we?d have the chances to make it 2-1 or 3-1 - and that?s what happened.

"We?ve been confident since November.

"We?re on a terrific run, we?re in the cup and the Champions League, and top of the table."

And Bayern's Dutchman coach Louis van Gaal said his side had suffered a Champions League hangover, before Robben sparked the team into action.

"Freiburg were very well organised," said the Dutchman.

"It was tough for us in the first half, but we made it worse by straying from our positions.

"We reorganised and dominated after the break.

"It?s very nice to end up winning, but we could easily have lost or drawn.

"We?ve scored from two set pieces, which speaks for our quality, but also that we were a shade lucky."

Article

Robben double bails out lacklustre Bayern

13 March 2010 18:10

BERLIN (AFP) - Bayern Munich suffered a Champions League hangover Saturday before Dutch winger Arjen Robben scored twice to seal a 2-1 win over strugglers Freiburg to put the hosts back on top of the Bundesliga.

After Tuesday's away goals victory over Fiorentina, which saw them make the Champions League's quarter-finals, Bayern were brought back down to earth by second-from-bottom Freiburg before Robben hit two second-half goals.

"Freiburg were very organised in the first-half, which made things very hard for us," said Bayern coach Louis van Gaal.

"We changed things in the second-half and were dominant.

"The victory is very nice, but we got off the hook, so we can only be reasonably happy."

Bayern went behind when Freiburg striker Cedrick Makiadi rifled in a 20-metre shot at Munich's Allianz Arena which gave the home side's goalkeeper Hans-Joerg Butt no chance on 31 minutes.

The hosts looked lethargic before Dutch international Robben scored his ninth league goal of the season, and his second in two games having scored Bayern's crucial second in Italy, when he drilled home a free-kick on 76 minutes.

And he then completed Munich's fightback when he converted an 83rd-minute penalty after Germany rising star Thomas Mueller was fouled in the area.

The result puts Bayern top of the league and two points clear of second-placed Schalke 04.

Earlier rock-bottom Bundesliga side Hertha Berlin slipped closer to relegation after suffering a 2-1 home defeat to fellow strugglers Nuremberg who grabbed an injury-time winner.

Berlin, who remain five points adrift, had taken the lead when their Greece striker Theofanis Gekas scored only his third goal of the season just before half-time before Nuremberg hit back with two second-half goals.

Nuremberg, who shocked title-contenders Bayer Leverkusen 3-2 last Sunday, drew level when Swiss striker Albert Bunjaku netted with a header on 61 minutes before Greek striker Angelos Charisteas scored the winner in stoppage time.

Their second straight wins lifts Nuremberg up to 15th in the table and out of the relegation zone.

Police made 30 arrests and four officers were injured after 100 Hertha fans rampaged through Berlin's Olympic Stadium and damaged the home side's bench after the final whistle.

Dortmund moved up to fourth and picked up their second straight win with a 4-1 victory at Bochum.

Argentina striker Lucas Barrios landed the hammer blow for Dortmund when he scored twice in three minutes midway through the second-half.

Wolfsburg picked up their fourth-straight league win under caretaker manager Lorenz-Guenther Koestner when they hammered Moenchengladbach 4-0 to go eighth.

Hanover picked up their second consecutive win under new coach Mirko Slomka with a 2-1 win over Eintracht Frankfurt to go 16th.

Third-placed Bayer Leverkusen need to beat Hamburg on Sunday to get their title hopes back on track after last weekend's shock loss to Nuremberg while Bremen are at Hoffenheim.

On Friday, former German international striker Kevin Kuranyi grabbed a 55th-minute winner to temporarily put Schalke top of the league, sealing a 2-1 win against Stuttgart.

It was Schalke's third successive win and their eighth at home this season while Kuranyi's timely strike was his 14th of the campaign.

Schalke, coached by Felix Magath, are trying to win a first league title since 1958 while Stuttgart suffered only their second defeat since former Tottenham boss Christian Gross took over in December.

Article

Bayern back to business for Bundesliga Freiburg clash

13 March 2010 05:20

BERLIN (AFP) - Bayern Munich may have booked their Champions League quarter-final berth, but captain Mark van Bommel says the Bundesliga leaders will be straight back to business against Freiburg on Saturday.

Despite suffering a 3-2 second-leg defeat in Fiorentina on Tuesday in the last 16, Bayern went through on the away-goals rule.

But having scored one of the goals in Florence, van Bommel wants three points at Munich's Allianz Arena on Saturday to cement their lead at the top of the German league.

"Physically, it is no problem getting back into training, but it is not so easy to concentrate again," admitted van Bommel. "But now we are all ready for Freiburg."

Bayern enjoy a two-point gap at the top of the table, but Schalke 04 can overtake them on Friday if they beat Stuttgart at Gelsenkirchen's Veltins Arena.

Having earned himself a fifth yellow card, Bayern's Bastian Schweinsteiger sits out Saturday's game serving a one-match ban.

Argentina defender Martin Demichelis is out with a face injury and Germany striker Mario Gomez is missing with a calf strain.

Bayern should have few problems against their second-from-bottom opponents, but with nine games until the end of the season, sides near the foot of the table are becoming increasingly desperate for points.

Having dropped to third in the table, Bayer Leverkusen will want three points at home to fourth-placed Hamburg on Sunday.

Having suffered a shock 3-2 defeat at struggling Nuremberg, Leverkusen need points to get back in the title race, but are without chief play-maker Toni Kroos while Germany midfielder Simon Rolfes is working back to fitness.

Hamburg's Dutch striker Ruud van Nistelrooy is expected to start.

At the other end of the table, there will be a battle royal in the German capital with bottom side Hertha Berlin hosting Nuremberg.

Nuremberg's win over Leverkusen left Hertha five points from second-bottom Freiburg and six points away from safety.

Striker Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting who scored twice against Leverkusen is looking to keep his scoring run going against Hertha.

Saturday

Borussia M'gladbach v VfL Wolfsburg, VfL Bochum v Borussia Dortmund, Mainz 05 v Cologne, Hanover 96 v Eintracht Frankfurt, Hertha Berlin v Nuremberg, Bayern Munich v Freiburg

Sunday

Hoffenheim v Werder Bremen, Bayer Leverkusen v Hamburg

Article

Bayern to miss Ribery, Gomez for Freiburg

12 March 2010 17:55

BERLIN (AFP) - Bundesliga leaders Bayern Munich will be without Germany striker Mario Gomez and French midfielder Franck Ribery for Saturday's visit of Freiburg, the club announced Friday.

The pair picked up injuries in Bayern's 3-2 defeat at Fiorentina on Tuesday which saw them qualify for the last eight of the Champions League on away goals: Gomez has a torn calf while Ribery is out with an ankle injury.

"He needs some rest," said Bayern coach Louis van Gaal ahead of the Allianz Arena clash with the pair expected to be out for two to three weeks.

"It was unbelievable what he did against Fiorentina even though he was not completely fit."

Ribery has struggled with injury this season having suffered from a persistent knee problem last autumn.

Bayern captain Mark van Bommel faces a race to be fit for Freiburg as he recovers from a facial injury.

Munich are two points clear of second-placed Schalke 04 at the top of the German league table ahead of this weekend's fixtures.

Bundesliga table

# Team MP D P
1 34 +41 70
2 34 +22 65
3 34 +31 61
4 34 +27 59
5 34 +12 57
6 34 +10 55
7 34 +15 52
8 34 +6 50
9 34 -6 47
10 34 -7 46
11 34 +2 42
12 34 -17 39
13 34 -9 38
14 34 -24 35
15 34 -24 33
16 34 -26 31
17 34 -31 28
18 34 -22 24