Bayern Munich

Bundesliga drama on final day of 2016-17 season

Leave a comment

The 34th and final round of action in the 2016-17 Bundesliga season took place on Saturday and there was plenty of drama at the top and bottom of the table.

[ MORE: Bundesliga’s final day scores ]

Hamburg scored a late winner against relegation rivals Wolfsburg to save themselves from competing in the Bundesliga relegation playoff for the third time in four years and push Wolfsburg into the relegation playoff.

Elsewhere there was plenty of chopping and changing for the remaining European places as Borussia Dortmund won a thriller 4-3 to stay in third place and qualify automatically for the UEFA Champions League, while Bayern Munich finished off their title-winning campaign in style.

Below is the final wrap of the Bundesliga season.


Hamburg 2-1 Wolfsburg

Hamburg have never been relegated from the Bundesliga and they will keep that proud record intact. Hamburg’s hero was Luca Waldschmidt who turned 21 yesterday and he jumped off the bench late on to head home and secure Hamburg’s spot in Germany’s top flight for next season. Filip Kosti had made it 1-1 in a nerve-jangling but the hosts scored late and their goalkeeper made a string of fine saves to pull off a remarkable final day win.

As for Wolfsburg, who had taken an early lead through Robin Knocke, the have a two-legged playoff on Thursday May 25 and May 29 as they aim to keep their place in the Bundesliga.

Bayern Munich 4-1 SC Freiburg

Philipp Lahm and Xabi Alonso went out with a win as the German champions (that’s now five titles on the spin) beat Freiburg thanks to goals from Arjen Robben and Arturo Vidal which put them 2-0 up, but Freiburg pulled a goal back to make it interesting. Ribery and Kimmich added goals in stoppage time to put some extra gloss on the scoreline.

Bayern also lifted the German title at the Allianz Arena after the full time whistle as Lahm and Alonso head into retirement with one final win under their belt. For Freiburg, they could still qualify for the Europa League if Dortmund beat Frankfurt in the German Cup final next weekend.

Borussia Dortmund 4-3 Werder Bremen

An absolute humdinger of a game as Dortmund scored a later winner via an Aubameyang penalty kick as Thomas Tuchel’s men secured third place and an automatic spot in the UCL group stage. Dortmund trailed 3-2 heading into the final 15 minutes but two late penalty kicks, the first from Marco Reus, turned the game around. Aubameyang also won the Bundesliga’s Golden Boot with 31 goals for the season.


Elsewhere

Hoffenheim 0-0 Augsburg – Hoffenheim’s draw means that they finish fourth and will be playing in the UCL playoff round
Hertha Berlin 2-6 Bayer Leverkusen – Hertha finished in sixth place and still qualified for Europa League after a big defeat
Cologne 2-0 Mainz – Koln sealed fifth place and a Europa League group stage spot. First European campaign in 25 years
Eintracht Frankfurt 2-2 RB Leipzig – Two goals in the last seven minutes rescued a point for Frankfurt
Ingolstadt 1-1 Schalke – Hosts are relegated but grabbed a nice point on their final day in the Bundesliga for at least 12 months
Monchengladbach 2-2 Darmstadt – Already-relegated Darmstadt score a late equalizer and cost ‘Gladbach a potential Europa spot

Standings

AC Milan completes signing of forward Kalinic

Getty Images
Leave a comment

MILAN (AP) Big-spending AC Milan has signed another player, completing the transfer of Croatia forward Nikola Kalinic from Fiorentina.

In a brief statement on Tuesday, Milan said it signed Kalinic “on a loan deal with obligation to buy.”

Kalinic has signed a four-year contract through to June 30, 2021.

Milan has been in negotiations with Fiorentina for the 29-year-old Kalinic for a while, and he missed training last week as he attempted to push through the move.

Milan, which was bought by a Chinese-led consortium in April, has spent more than 200 million euros ($234 million) in the offseason, signing Leonardo Bonucci, Andre Silva, Ricardo Rodriguez, Franck Kessie, Andrea Conti, Hakan Calhanoglu, Lucas Biglia and Mateo Musacchio.

Alan Shearer has a message for Wayne Rooney

Getty Images
Leave a comment

Alan Shearer finally has a friend.

On Monday Wayne Rooney scored in Everton’s 1-1 draw at Manchester City (see in the video above) and he became just the second-player in history to reach 200 goals in the Premier League.

Rooney, 31, still has some way to go to catch Shearer’s all-time record of 260 goals in the PL but the former Manchester United striker has a few more years left in the tank to try and get as close as he can.

Take a look at the video below as Shearer (or, Mary Poppins to Newcastle fans) delivers a message to Rooney.

What’s next for Julian Green, and what’s gone wrong?

Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images
Leave a comment

Julian Green will have a new team again soon, in all likelihood.

A Stuttgart publication says Green is on the transfer market this month, just eight months after moving from Bayern Munich to the then-2.Bundesliga side for less than $500,000.

Now 22, Green is three and a half years removed from Jurgen Klinsmann’s long campaign to get him into a USMNT shirt. It’s been a little less time since he scored in extra time against Belgium in the World Cup, but also less than a year since he scored goals in consecutive USMNT matches. That shouldn’t be overlooked.

[ MORE: Man City 1-1 Everton | 3 things ]

Green scored one goal in 10 appearances for Stuttgart, who was promoted to the Bundesliga at the end of last season. He fell out of favor there, but was far from poor. Green completed 87 percent of his passes and averaged 1.3 dribbles per game (only four teammates had more, though 10 matches is a smaller sample size).

Before that, he spent parts of three seasons with Bayern Munich and made just four appearances, taking a loan to Hamburg in 2014-15 that saw him banished to Hamburg II after just five appearances.

What gives? Whether attitude or skill, Green has a lot of work to do to get back to a level where he’s a reasonable USMNT call-up (Green has a respectable three goals in eight call-ups, netting against Cuba and New Zealand in Oct. 2016). Still, it’s far from over for Green at 22.

There are legit questions here, as the list of not high-profile players Bayern Munich has used in its senior team at a young age and blossomed elsewhere isn’t necessarily impressive (at least relatively speaking). Nils Petersen, Thomas Kraft, and Sandro Wagner are exceptions to the rule. Better put: Bayern has a really good idea what it’s doing when it lets young players walk, and it begs discussion on the best path for Green.

It seems likely he could get a move to another 2.Bundesliga club, and there’s an outside shot he could get a look in the top flight. It would be interesting to know where the interest lies abroad. Would it be hard to acquire a work permit for France or Spain (England seems a hard sell)? Could a move to a free-flowing Eredivisie club work?

Obviously Major League Soccer clubs would welcome his talent and it’s difficult to imagine he wouldn’t be a useful piece in the United States’ top tier, even if on a short-term move as he looks to regain confidence. Would Green see it as below him?

Arsenal’s Wilshere sent-off after brawling in U-23 match vs. Man City

Photo by James Chance/Getty Images
Leave a comment

Arsenal midfielder Jack Wilshere isn’t standing around waiting for his next team, he’s fighting.

Period.

Wilshere got into with several members of Manchester City’s U-23 side in a match on Monday, with the English midfielder taking exception to a hockey-style hip check from City’s Matthew Smith.

[ MORE: Man City 1-1 Everton | 3 things ]

Shoving the 17-year-old Smith, Wilshere saw the City man take a tumble and stay prone. Still riled up, Wilshere tangled with City’s Tyreke Wilson.

Wilshere and Wilson were sent off.

Given his injury history, we’re not surprised Wilshere took exception to a hard and needless foul in a U-23 match.

The Arsenal man has been linked with moves to Newcastle, West Ham, AC Milan, and Sampdoria, but Arsene Wenger wants to keep Wilshere at the Emirates Stadium.