He used to be accused of only buying French players, but now Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger is considering two more additions to his growing collection of Germans. According to the Daily Mirror, Wenger is plotting moves for midfielders Ilkay Gundogan, of Borussia Dortmund, and Lars Bender, of Bayer Leverkusen.
1. Another Champions League side has proved that its whole is greater than the some of its parts. Well done to Borussia, who were assembled on a shoestring budget in comparison to Real. 2. The first 70 minutes was essentially watching 11 men in white shirts gradually run out of ideas against the Germans.
1. This particular Champions League Houdini act looks like it will be beyond even the seasoned escapologists of Barcelona. 2. Dante's peak was considerably higher than that of anyone in the Barca defence. Bayern dominated in the air. 3. Lionel Messi can claim to be fully fit all he likes he clearly wasn't.
The Germans were winning 4-0. They're the Germans. 4-0 is beyond over. Except it wasn't. In the second half, Sweden marched back and scored four of their own unanswered goals. Zlatan led the charge, and our man Ryu Voelkel was on hand in Berlin to snap a few photos and watch the Germans collapse in an ineffable manner in front of their home fans.
Team USA brings it to North Korea and everyone goes, "Really?"Surprising everyone on the planet,
Team USA, with some confidence, but assloads of poorly served balls, came out on top of the North
Koreans in their quarterfinal match. I did not expect this. I still think it was a boring game, but
that's only because this team does little for me stylistically, and I really anticipated the North
Koreans putting them to shame from the get go.
Alex Morgan, having nearly kicked her own head in, maybe.Because it's been a little while, right?
And you miss her running around on your television, right? (You should check US Soccer to see the
U.S. women's national team "Yay, We Won Something Finally" tour schedule, including a few friendly
dates with Germany, which nearly made me pee myself with delight.
Can Team USA stop these girls? Oh, I don't think so.What a beautiful goal by Christine Exeter,
right? And then a defensive meltdown to allow the tie (and by meltdown, I mean retreat and watch,
with only one challenge that came too late), and then the foul in the box, which booked Team
Canada's plane ride home.
This once-over comes courtesy of the German keeper in blue.
And it turns out I'm right about picking the young Germans, led by Maren Meinert and Bettina
Wiegmann and Silke Rottenberg, all of whom, unbeknownst to us all, strategize with their hands
on their chins. Like Team USA had any answer to this.
Eleven good times.So, now we wait until the 26th for more of the U-20 tournament, and I'm going to
do my best to not throw a fit about it.
Best news? The Germans play the States on Monday. I've been waiting a long, long time for this
match. Finally, the Germans come to my screen, with their youth and their coaches and everyone's
Prior to Euro 2012, rumours started to surface linking Rafael van der Vaart with a move back to
Germany. Initially, Schalke 04 were put in the frame before Rafa's old team Hamburg stepped in and
declared their interest.
The player was preparing for the Euros at the time but after Holland's early exit, the stories
started to gather momentum.
The U-20 Women's World Cup kicked off in Japan two days ago, and both Canada and Germany got into
the thick of the action almost immediately. The Canadian girls, who are looking to follow up on the
success of their senior counterparts at the Olympics, registered a comfortable 6-0 victory over
Argentina while the title holders, Germans thrashed China 4-0 in Hiroshima.
As so often before, I was wrong about one thing: history repeated itself once more in last night's
semifinal match between Italy and Germany. Italy was again better than Germany in an important
match, much to the disappointment of the Germans that surely has been one of the most entertaining
teams of the tournament, and surely it is a shame to see them out.
Italy outplay the Germans and themselves, rocking Warsaw and showing that favourites come in
different shapes and sizes. Unfortunately, it means that tournament sweethearts Germany are out of
the competition with a lot to think over. Thinking is one...
Messi? Who? I only want to be better than Bendtner. I can do the underpants thing too.
It's been decided. The winner of the last 2 World Cups will contest the final on Sunday. Italy
played the perfect game to see off the challenge of Germany to set up a rematch of their group game
Mesut Oezil has been a shadow, Andrea Pirlo a giant
Mesut Oezil is no Andrea Pirlo: This Euro is all about how Andrea Pirlo got his
groove back on. The 2010 World Cup was all about how Pirlo was finished and Oezil was the superstar
of the new generation. Forward two years, Pirlo made himself critical to Juve's success and in this
Euro showed his mesmerizing mastery over the ball as he fed Italy's attack with laser like
precision and executed a panenka as a perfect coda.
Balotelli twofold downs Germany as Italy march onStriker Mario Balotelli struck doubly to fixing
Italys 2-1 semi-terminal romp over Germany on Thursday to jilt the Germans Euro 2012 aspirations in
tatters while the Azzurri march on to the terminal
Mario Balotelli silenced some of his critics on Thursday, scoring a pair of goals that booked
Italy's place in the Euro 2012 final while defeating tournament favorites Germany.
Italy upset the Germans, 2-1, on Thursday courtesy of a first-half Balotelli brace. Balotelli
thundered home a header in the 20th minute following some poor defending, and he scored the
eventual winner 16 minutes later in spectacular fashion.
Daniele De Rossi does not mind hearing suggestions that Italy will be unable to match the
attractiveness of German and Spanish football. Instead, he is simply focused on enjoying the way
his teammates have grown used to playing with each other.
De Rossi, often considered one of Azzurri's best midfielders alongside the highly
acclaimed Andrea Pirlo, understands that Germany will likely start favorites in tonight's semifinal
meeting between the two sides but sees no reason for concern.
Well well, it is good to see a little bit of arrogance from your manager now and then, and Arsene Wenger is not all impressed with the possibility of having two German teams in the Champions League final. He doesn't believe that Arsenal would have been beaten in Germany like Barcelona and Real Madrid were this week.
The earlier pre-season friendlies didn't quite excite me as much. Maybe it was the fact that
many first choice players were missing that necessitated the inclusion of many youngsters who
clearly weren't going to play a major part in Arsenal's season. These issues also made is pointless
to look at the tactics of the team or indulge in any sort of detailed discussion of the events of
Unstoppable? Yes.The Nigerians gave the U.S. defense a run for their money today. During their
semifinal match, the Super Falcons caught the American defense looking fragile and undisciplined
quite a few times, but just couldn't capitalize (this may have something to do with the serious
amount of dancing they do in the tunnel prematch, but no, okay, I can't prove that).
That's right, you cover your face!What happened, Team of Choice? Sandra D'Angelo comes up huge with
her penalty shot shutdown, and Jenna Richardson follows it up with a beautiful goal. This had the
makings of a great victory over the Scandinavians!
Then I see, what, via FIFA.com highlight reel: a defense looking lackluster, a keeper
Poor Italy. After their fantastic performance against the hotly tipped Germans, speculation
abounded that Super Mario and his boys would have enough in the tank to ruin Spain's plans for
global domination. The Spanish, possibly peeved by accusations that they were boring throughout the
tournament however, took their Ã¼ber shiny A-game to Kiev and stroked [.
As Fernando Torres drifted into the dark behind the Italian defence, the ball sliding towards
his feet, a sense of responsibility must have danced upon his thoughts. For near to three years
now, the Spaniard has taken it upon himself to shatter any perception that he was once an
accomplished striker â€“ almost certainly, at one point, the best on the planet.
FÃ bregas 14'
The score line may flatter Spain, the by-product of Italy playing with 10 men for the last half an
hour, but that's the only thing which flatters Spain. There will be effusive praise, but it's not
A slightly controversial headline today regarding Monsieur Balotelli from yours truly in
preparation for today's Euro 2012 final. This is something which has been on my mind for a while
but whether any of it is any true is entirely a different matter.
Anyway, firstly back to the game between the Germans and the assured Azzuri which was perhaps
provided one of the most surprising results of the tournament so far.
Good morning to you. It's Friday. The sun is shining and I didn't drink nearly as much wine as I
did the night before. That's because I drank gimlets instead, but who's going to be pedantic at
this time of the morning? You, wise guy? Didn't think so.
So, last night at the Euros Italy went through to the final, beating Germany 2-1 with two goals
from Mario Balotelli, the kind of player who would make a bishop kick a hole in a stained glass
Based on the fact that they've been rather excellent throughout Euro 2012, most people assumed
Germany would make easy work of dismissing the Italians in their semi-final game. Mario Balotelli,
of course, spoiled Das Party and now the Germans head are left wondering what went wrong.
(Thankfully, the Bayern Munich players in the squad will be able to show the others how to cope
with the disappointment of being denied a trophy that virtually had their name written on it.
It had all been going rather swimmingly for Jogi Loew's gifted German side, with a much
predicted final clash against Spain in the offing. However, a stunning first-half display from
Mario Balotelli for Italy tore Germany's hopes of glory apart as Cesare Prandelli's side outplayed
a turgid looking German team.
Germany v Italy (7.45pm KO, Live on BBC1) A fascinating clash and it's
the Italians who make most appeal from a betting perspective at 3.4 withÂ Blue SquareÂ in the
draw/no bet market. The bookmakers heavily favour Germany, who boast the best attack at Euro 2012
with 9 goals scored, in the 90 minutes market and they are general 1.
It's Friday, and we've got your soccer links to get your day started. We also have Germans. Lots of Germans.
It's March, which means a certain Madness is preventing us from watching Major League Soccer tonight on Spanish-language TV. But, without soccer to watch on a Friday night, we all should have a little more time to join with our German friends (and certain B&RU writers) in celebrating Manuel Neuer's birthday.
USA were officially crowned champions of the U-20 Women's World Cup after a closely-fought 1-0
victory over defending champions Germany in Tokyo tonight. Ironically for the Germans,
Kealia Ohai's strike in the 44th minute was the first and only goal they
conceded at the tournament and despite a successful campaign so far, they weren't able to fight off
a hardworking USA side.
Sami Hyypia believes Liverpool's style of play under Brendan Rodgers will make them one of the
toughest teams to beat in the Barclays Premier League this season.
The Kop legend watched on as his Bayer Leverkusen side was dismantled 3-1 by the Reds in a friendly
contest at Anfield on Sunday afternoon.