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Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Bordeaux vs Bayern München (UEFA Champions League) Preview

Bayern München this Wednesday will continue their Champions League journey and face Bordeaux away. Bayern München recently picked up the winning way again and it was a boost for them. Now here's the preview of Bayern München chance of this match:

Bayern München won against Frieburg last Saturday without "Robbery" combination. Luca Toni worked very hard last Saturday and it is very likely to start this match. However, it is doubtful if his finishing is improved. This match again the "Robbery" combination will not appear in the match so Bastian Schweinsteiger and Thomas Müller will be very important. On the other hand, the return of captain Mark van Bommel can definitely improve the midfield domination. I believe he will work with Anatoliy Tymoshchuk again in order to control the midfield and stop Bordeaux's Yoann Gourcuff to create.
What makes Bayern München to win: Midfield domination. As mentioned, the midfield dominance will be very important in this match as Gourcuff is the magician in the midfield. In order to win this match, van Bommel and Tymoshchuk must work together well in order to maintain the possession in the midfield. Schweinsteiger and Müller need to connect the striker in order to win this game.
What makes them down: Strikers. I personally am not worried about the defence but the confident of the strikers makes me worried. Mario Gomez loses his starting place because he is not confident at all. At the same time, it is also doubtful if Toni and Klose can pick up their confident to score goals. Together with the injury of Ivica Olic, it is very doubtful if they can convert the plays into goals.

General preview: I believe the match will be decided in the midfield. Both teams are very good at ball possession so it is the deciding factor for this match. I believe van Bommel and Tymoshchuk can control the midfield well based on their big match experience. I believe the match will favor Bayern München a little bit but a draw is not a surprising result.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Germany vs Finland (World Cup Qualifier) Preview

Germany had successfully qualified for the World Cup after winning against Russia last Saturday. This group had already decided out the group winner, Germany, and group runner up, Russia. Meanwhile, Russia had already had enough points to qualify for the playoff in November. So there is no competitive matchup in this Wednesday action. So Germany and Finland match will be another friendly. Now here's the preview:

Germany: Germany did very well last Saturday. They seeked the Russian weak spot and got the chance to score goal and win. Even though the draw should be more deserved, Germany still did a great job. Therefore, this match is just a routine match and it turns out to be the friendly international. I believe coach Joachim Löw will give chances to the bench players. Marcel Schäfer, Marko Marin, Andreas Beck, and Mario Gomez will be very likely to start the match, as well as the reserve goalkeeper Tim Wiese will also likely to start. However, I seriously doubt if Germany will give their all potential to win this game.
What makes Germany win: National pride. I believe the players will keep unbeaten at least because it is shameful to lose the game at home. They may want to win the game even in order to maintain the excellent record. Furthermore, Germany only lost 2 qualifier games in their all time history so they will kick themselves if they lose the third game.
What makes them down: Purpose. There is not any real purpose for Germany in this match. Past record showed that Germany were so lazy and slow at the unimportant friendlies and qualifiers. I believe this is very likely to happen again and Finland can make some surprises.

Finland: Finland had already out of the contention a month ago. So even they put their full strength to play these 2 matches, I believe they do not have any pressure and they will just enjoy themselves. They won against Wales last Saturday and maintain the third position. For them this is not a bad result and they accept this. The Zürich pair, Veli Lampi, and Hannu Tihinen will be very important for the Finland defence. Jussi Jääskeläinen will be very important in goalkeeping as it is predicted Germany will be the one who possess the ball all the time.
What makes Finland win: Pressure-less. They do not have any pressure in this moment. As they will be the third in the table and there is no way to go up or down. So I believe they can bring surprise to Germany as they are very relaxed in the moment.
What makes them down: Quality. Obviously they are outplayed in terms of player quality. Germany can control the ball easily and they will likely to score. So Finland need to do better in defence and counter attacks if they want to make some surprises.

General prediction: This match becomes the friendly as there is no competition issue. Germany will not pay their full strength in this match as they need to keep themselves fit for the upcoming Bundesliga fixture, as well as the future chance to enter the final squad for the World Cup. For Finland, they are very relaxed in this moment and I do not believe they will be too urged and aggressive even they are trailing. So a bored draw is predicted, or Germany will win by 1 goal at most.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Russia vs Germany (World Cup Qualifier Group 4) Preview

Germany this Saturday will have the most important match in 2009, they will travel to Moscow to play against Russia. Russia is only 1 point behind Germany and if Russia win, they are very likely to win the group and qualify to World Cup directly. On the other hand, Germany also want to win as they will qualify for World Cup, no matter what happen in the next round. Now here's the preview:

Russia: Russia only lost against Germany away and they won all the other matches. They will play on the artificial grass ground and lead them to have a slight advantage. Andrei Arshavin no doubt will be the most important Russian player as his connection to the strikers are very good. Pavel Pogrebnyak will very likely to start the match. Also, Pogrebnyak knows the German style well as he is currently playing for VfB Stuttgart. Yuri Zhirkov will lead the defence and he plays an important role in the defence.
What makes Russia to win: Counter attacks. Russia are very good at the counter attacks. Coach Guus Hiddink did a very good job to make the team to be very well disciplined and organized team. They will be very likely to win if they can tackle the ball effectively and start the counter attack well.
What make them down: Off the ball defence. The biggest problem of Russia is they spend too much game time on the off the ball defence. It is very dangerous for them as they give the bomb to the opposition to bomb themselves. They have to hold the ball better or else it will be just the matter of time to concede goals.

Germany: Germany did take the trouble when they only snatched a draw against Finland in the very early stage. Now they need at least one point in order to protect their lead and bring back the advantage back home. However, the entired team want to win as they all know all the troubles and doubts will be gone. Mesut Özil playes a very important role to Germany as he is the best player in the team so far. Mario Gomez and Miroslav Klose are having the confident trouble and now it is time for them to perform. Per Mertesacker will lead the defence line and Heiko Westermann will be likely to get along with him.
What makes Germany to win: Passing game. As mentioned above, Russia is very well disciplined and organized in defence, so more passing is the only way to confuse Russian defence and create goals. Özil plays an important role to connect the midfield and strikers, as well as make more runs to confuse the Russians.
What makes them down: Strikers. Stefan Kießling once again is forgotten so the remaining strikers need to perform. Cacau and Klose are yet to score in the league so it is questionable in their confident. Plus Gomez and Lukas Podolski are not good at form so those strikers must pick up their confident quick.

General prediction: I believe Germany will have more possession. This is because Russia are comfortable without the ball and are likely to wait for the counter attack chances. So Germany must make use of the possession very well in order to win this match. It is likely to see a draw here as both teams will not be upset to end up like this. However, I believe Germany will have a little bit advantage as they always have the ball. So even Germany are away, I believe they can qualify for the World Cup after this Saturday.