Berlin, Germany (Weltexpress). There were long faces in that grand soccer arena on the outskirts of Munich, and here at Hofbräu Berlin looking at lots of large TV sets after the encounter of FC Bayern against Real Madrid. The classic match between Munich and Madrid was already triggered off in the quarter-leg of the Champions League, a pairing that was pronounced to be a final in advance. To the despair of many, this turned into a seeming disaster for the top team in the men’s soccer league – one of the most boring leagues in the world, as the “Amigo” football company has been unrivalled in Germany for years – although this time, only a 1:2 on the screens in the stadium and here at the Hofbräu Berlin, sold out as the alternatively red and white bowl was, lit up.
After the final whistle, not even Manuel Neuer’s eyes gleamed, even if he did well against Karim Benzema and Cristiano Ronaldo and also could not be blamed for Ronaldo’s two goals (47’ and 77’). Thanks to goalie Neuer, there is still a bit of hope that, in the return next Tuesday in Madrid, Bayern will be able to turn the tides in the CL quarter-leg. If Neuer, as team captain Philipp Lahm said after the lost match, kept the eleven on their way into the semi-finals, then the question arises: who else is able to keep it going? Because to blunder a penalty like Artúro Vidal (45′), who at least as Air Vidal justified one, or like Javier Martínez, to be shown two yellow cards within three minutes, must be regarded as rarely stupid. By the way, not every referee would have given the penalty.
The record champion with fan shops from China to the US had one of their worst shows under trainer Carlo Ancelotti after the penalty default, especially in the second half. The team from Munich were only better in the period after the 1:0 header from Vidal, when they dominated the match. But Müller (39’) and Vidal (40’) missed good chances. In this phase, the players of FC Bayern had to make it 2:0. Without a striker and world star like Robert Lewandowski, however, there was really no chance against Real although these lacked two internal defenders.
Following the grotesquely bad performance of FC Bayern, where some players seemed not only to be at the end of their strengths but clearly above the zenith of their skills, Real remains the favourite for the return, for Ronaldo will not be on the bench, Benzema not sit on the grandstand nor Bale at home. Bayern needs a miracle to beat Real, one of those “Werderian wonders” – and without doubt some better players soon.
FC Bayern München: Manuel Neuer – David Alaba, Jérôme Boateng, Javier Martínez, Philipp Lahm – Aturo Vidal, Xabier Alonso (63’ Juan Bernat), Franck Ribéry (66’ Douglas Costa), Thiago Alcántara, Arjen Robben – Thomas Müller (81’ Kingsley Coman)
Real Madrid: Keylo Navas – Marcelo da Silva Júnior, Sergio Ramos, Carlos Fernandez, Daniel Carvajal, Carlos Casemiro, Luka Modrić (90+1’ Matei Kovačić), Toni Kroos – Cristiano Ronaldo, Karim Benzema (83’ Asensio), Gareth Bale (59’ Asensio)
Referee: Nicola Rizzoli (Italy)
Yellow card: Alonso – Carvajal, Kroos
Yellow-red card: Martínez (61’)