Bundesliga Team of the Week: Ribery, Schweinsteiger & Kroos star for rampant Bayern

The 2012-13 Bundesliga seems to be Bayern Munich’s to lose after a fantastic weekend for Jupp Heynckes’ men, who not only beat Hamburg 3-0 at the Imtech Arena, but also saw Schalke and Borussia Dortmund drop points to Hoffenheim and Stuttgart respectively.

Elsewhere, there were thrilling wins for Werder Bremen and Bayer Leverkusen, while Borussia Monchengladbach’s run without back-to-back league victories was extended to nine months as Lucien Favre’s side were held at home by Freiburg. And Goal.com was there to cast a critical eye over every match.

In goal, the pick of the talent was Tim Wiese who made a string of saves as Hoffenheim claimed a 3-2 victory over Schalke. This performance would have gone some way to silencing the critics after recent displays had left his ability in question.

In defence, we have Dani Carvajal, who capped a fine performance for Leverkusen by running the length of the pitch to set up Gonzalo Castro, alongside Marvin Plattenhardt, who was a rock for Nurnberg against Wolfsburg, and Mario Eggimann, who helped Hannover to a rare clean sheet.

Two Bayern Munich stars feature in the midfield: Bastian Schweinsteiger and Toni Kroos, who both found the net as the Bavarians tore apart Hamburg. Meanwhile, Stefan Reinartz was in command in the centre of the park for Leverkusen, and Roberto Firmino was on song for Hoffenheim.

Aaron Hunt scored both of Werder Bremen’s goals, one of which was an unstoppable free-kick, Mame Biram Diouf netted one and made another for Hannover, while Franck Ribery is the final Bayern player to make the cut, having picked up where he left off before his injury.






Bayern can win the Champions League, says Tymoshchuk

Anatoliy Tymoshchuk believes that Bayern Munich have what it takes to go all the way in the Champions League this season.

The Bavarians fell at the final hurdle last term as Chelsea claimed a penalties victory at the Allianz Arena, but the Ukrainian is hopeful that the Bavarians can make amends for previous disappointments this time out.

“In my first year in Munich, we won all the trophies except the Champions League, and this season we have already won a Super Cup in Germany, started the Bundesliga with a national record and are first in the league,” he was quoted as saying on the official Fifa website.

“This season we have every chance to win everything, including the Champions League.

“Over the past three years, Bayern have played twice in the final of the Champions League. We unfortunately lost twice, though in my opinion we deserved to win at least one of those finals.

“But football is unpredictable and that’s why it’s interesting.”

Bayern are currently preparing for the Champions League Group F match at home against Lille.

Heynckes: Bayern Munich victory proves team spirit

Jupp Heynckes believes Bayern Munich’s 3-0 away victory over Hamburg is proof of the team spirit within the squad.

Bastian Schweinsteiger gave the Bavarians the lead on Saturday, before further strikes from Thomas Muller and Toni Kroos ensured they bounced back from last week’s loss to Bayer Leverkusen in emphatic style.

“I’m delighted with the team’s approach,” the 67-year-old coach told reporters after the match.

“The way we chalked up the victory today was first-class, it was outstanding. It’s show the team spirit in the group.

“For example, Franck Ribery was exceptional today, but Mario Mandzukic was just as important due to his work-rate, pressing and defending.

“That’s the hallmark of my team at the moment. Everyon’s looking out for everyone else – we’re going for success as a unit.”

Meanwhile, Schweinsteiger stated his relief at bouncing back from the Leverkusen loss so quickly, particularly given Borussia Dortmund’s 0-0 draw with Stuttgart and Schalke’s 3-2 loss to Hoffenheim.

“It was important to provide some answers after the Leverkusen match, and we’ve not won that often in Hamburg recently. We were determined to do it today,” he added.

“The first-half was very intense. It was important to take the lead. It’s been a very good round of matches for us. Naturally, we knew the other scores before kick-off and were were even more motivated.”

Hamburg 0-3 Bayern: Schweinsteiger, Kroos and Muller return Bavarians to winning ways

Bayern Munich have extended their lead at the top of the Bundesliga to seven points, after comfortably beating Hamburg 3-0 in a game where the home side provided little in the way of resistance.

Goals from Bastian Schweinsteiger, Thomas Muller and Toni Kroos wrapped up the three points for Jupp Heynckes men, in what has been a perfect weekend for the Munich side.

After a closely contested opening, with its fair share of mistimed challenges and corners, Hamburg were the first team to carve out a respectable chance in the 13th minute.

Rafael Van der Vaart almost caught out Manuel Neuer at his front post with a first time strike, but Dante unknowingly blocked the effort, deflecting it out for a corner. Tomas Rincon struck a powerful 30-yard drive from the resulting set piece, which whistled past Bayern’s post.

David Alaba and Franck Ribery were at the heart of the away side’s creativity, as Bayern almost exclusively used their left flank to exploit Dennis Diekmeier.

The young full back was responsible for Bayern’s first shot on target, and provided service for an isolated Mario Mandzukic, while Ribery’s drove at his marker throughout the first half and enjoyed great success.

Between their 13th minute flurry of action and the half time whistle, Hamburg failed to create any chances, and Bayern’s domination came to fruition in the 39th minute.

Kroos rounded Rene Adler, after a quick break from the away side, and looked to have wasted the opportunity to score, having taken the ball extremely wide. Instead of firing an effort at goal from a narrow angle, the midfielder chose to take his time and picked out a great cross to find Schweinsteiger at the back post, who threw himself at the ball to nod his side into a deserved half time lead.

Hamburg boss Thorsten Fink threw on Artoms Rudnecvs at the interval to try and change the momentum of the game, but Bayern continued in the same vein as the first, with Mario Mandzukic spurning a great chance to double their lead in the 46th minute, as Adler saved brilliantly to deny the Croatian.

Muller made no mistake a minute later however, with a phenomenal finish. The Germany international took a poor touch and raced to prevent the ball from going out for a goal kick, but then turned quickly and curled a breathtaking effort just inside Adler’s back post from a seemingly impossible angle.

In the 53rd minute, Bayern were celebrating again, as Hamburg began to implode. After a delicate through ball from Ribery, Kroos hammered an effort into the roof of the net from close range, leaving Adler no chance and his side a lot to do to turn the game around.

Although theĀ Rothosen saw more of the ball in the second half, chances were scarce, and a long range strike from Van der Vaart was Neuer’s only real save of note in a forgettable game for the home side.

A disappointing performance for Fink’s side, who stay eighth, as Bayern go well clear of second placed Schalke.

Hamburg face Bayern backlash, warns Hoeness

Uli Hoeness has claimed that Hamburg will be facing Bayern Munich in the Bundesliga at the worst possible time following their late defeat to Bayer Leverkusen.

The Bavarians gifted their opponents a 2-1 victory after Jerome Boateng’s own goal at the death ended their unbeaten start to the league campaign, but now must attempt to make amends against die Rothosen, who have won three of their last four matches.

Hamburg CEO Carl Jarchow invited Hoeness to the Imtech Arena, the venue of Saturday’s clash, to discuss footballing matters, and the Bayern president was in a spirited mood in the wake of their exchange when speaking to reporters the following morning.

“It’s unlucky for Hamburg that we lost last week,” he said.I have great sympathy for them but we cannot back off because of the defeat against Leverkusen.”

Hoeness then discussed his club’s chances of triumphing in the Champions League and vowed that they will not spend beyond their means in their pursuit of the continental trophy.

“Football will survive as a source of entertainment and fun,” he added.Sure we want to win the Champions League, but only on a commercially reasonable basis.”