Saturday, 07/05/2011 @ 15:30 (GMT+2)
With two matches left in the Bundesliga, Bayer 04 needs to add 2 points to secure the second spot which grants the direct qualification for the Champions League. This is assuming that Bayern wins their 2 games.
Why can we be optmistic that the Werkself will secure the second place on this match-day?
- Six straight wins in the BayArena: while in the first part of the season we lost a lot of points at home, we have regained our home strength in 2011. Away we have suffered 2 straight losses: Bayern & Cologne
- Hamburg is not fighting for anything, they are 8th in the table and have no chance to qualify for the Europa League
- Our opponent will miss important players like Mathijsen, Jansen, Zé Roberto, Petric and Van Nistelrooy
- The two last games between both teams have ended with a 4:2 win for Leverkusen
Or will we choke again to make it interesting till the last match-day? Would not be the first time that we show nerves on the last metres.
It would be a huge blow! Not only could we celebrate in the BayArena our return to the Champions League six year after and avoid a final in which I certainly would not bet my money on Leverkusen (psychological advantage would be with Bayern). Legend Sami Hyypiä who is retiring as a player would have this way a nice farewell in front of the home crowd. Jupp Heynckes despite departing to Bayern Munich, should also get some recognition for reaching the objectives set by the management (2009/10: Europa League; 2010/11: Champions League).
Ballack will not find himself in the starting line-up for the first time after 7 consecutive games. No idea what is behind this, as he certainly played well in his last appearances. However after the Cologne game which made Dortmund champion he said the following: “It could be that we are missing luck, perhaps willingness. If we review the season, nearly every time we had the chance to come closer to Dortmund, we failed to do our part. The team has to believe, that they can reach higher objectives. This club needs to win something, to get rid of this Vizekusen image so that this belief in achieving the highest possible returns to the changing rooms. We have certainly in the team, players that will raise their voice and who want more.”
Something totally opposite to the management and the coach himself, they congratulated Dortmund and said that that the chase was seen as mission impossible, too much had to happen (The comfort-zone says hello).
Or maybe the coach just wants to give Renato Augusto the central role in midfield to improve the dynamics upfield? Rolfes (not Ballack) will be nominated by Joachim Löw for the upcoming games of the Nationalmannschaft. The Bayer-04 captain is set to return to the starting line-up and should play next to Vidal in defensive midfield.
Line-up Hamburg (from Kicker):
Rost – Diekmeier,Kacar,Westermann,Aogo – Jarolim,Trochowski – Pitroipa,Elia – B.Hatira, Guerrero
Will we decide it on Saturday or do we have to pray to the football god on the last fixture?