DAS BOOT! - MATCH DAY 32 - NINE DAYS!
The title says it all, Dear Readers. In Nine Days, Your Humble Narrator will embark on a Footy Fan’s trip of a lifetime. It has been a long and hard road. What was initially a very generous and blessed gift of a plane ticket became one of many last minute expenses which have driven the cost of this journey far beyond what I had hoped to be a controlled and reasonable expense.
In the past 7 days, we have changed our flight not once, but twice (at considerable cost and penalty both times). We have learned that the ticket we had purchased for the Bayern Munich home game happened to be in the VISITOR’S SECTION, prompting the need to purchase a SECOND ticket which is actually in the Bayern Fan’s section, as was originally intended.
Though I have placed the Away team ticket up for sale online, I fear I may not even be able to give it away. Though it cost me a pretty penny (Well over 100 Canadian over-sized goldish coloured pennies, simply for the comfort, luxury, and bragging rights that will come in knowing that I can stand amongst the Bayern Faithful on Match Day 33 in Munich, but I digress) and the laptop computer I purchased for the express purpose of being able to blog live reactions and/or predictions on the scene and share what pictures I take of the festivities.
Rest assured, Dear Readers, we went to great expense to ensure that as much photography, mock journalism, and abashed fandom be shared with those who care to indulge in it here on everyone’s favorite German Footy Blog…..
1. FC Köln – Bochum
This week’s Friday night Fixture features the Bunksters in Bochum hosting Men’s Cologne. The Bunksters have continued to live up to their name down the stretch, as they have admittedly fallen off the pace and lay in 14th place in the league with 28 points, a single point above Hannover 96, who lie in the third “playoff” relegation spot.
Köln, meanwhile (Pronounce “Kuhl-n” for the Anglophones out there) have been their usual streaky and unpredictable selves. Comfortably out of the drop with 34 points, the men in the Cathedral city have little to play for but pride at this point. Their neighbours in Frankfurt have out-performed them and out-classed them as far as taking the Bundesliga by storm is concerned. They have enough points to stay up, but not enough to challenge for a spot in Europe.
Lukas Podolski brings what Your Humble Narrator predicted to the Billy Goats this season; mediocrity. Perhaps his superstar status is precisely what the Cathedral city needs to keep it content with it’s middling status in the Bundesliga table. Perhaps this is proof that Lukas Podolski is as much a product of the talent around him as not. Is Lu-Lu-Lukas still a guaranteed player on Joachim Löw’s squad this World Cup? It’s hard to say.
Speaking of Joachim Löw, the questions have been asked what is it going to take of Löw to continue on as manager of the German National Squad. The answer is simple; success. The pool is oozing with talent. The German football system has never been as successful and diverse as it is now. With the addition of Mesut Özil, the emergence of players like Toni Kroos and Stefan Kießling, there is plenty of talent to draw on.
The loss of Robert Enke is also considerable. Though we have not discussed this tragic loss in this publication at length, I can only say that when one is known for producing words upon demand, it is silence which speaks loudest. I have my own tribute which I play to place while I am in Europe, and it will be my own personal sense of duty and reverence to Robert Enke.
All I can say, dear readers, I had a very keen and profound reaction to the tragic news of Robert Enke’s suicide, and I immediately planned a very simple and act of memorial to show my respect for the choice that he made and the events which brought them to pass. Given his absence, it seems that René Adler is the favorite to replace him, with Manuel Neuer chomping at the bit, awaiting his chance.
There were whispering that perhaps Löw favoured bringing in an elder veteran, but given that no other goalkeeper has shown his face, it seems it will be the young pair of Adler and Neuer for South Africa, with an as of yet unnamed elder statesman to accompany them. My guess is Frank Rost of Hamburger SV who is known for his moments of brilliance and is deserving of the nod, but that is just my opinion.
Back to matters at hand, with Cologne and Bochum facing off in the RheinEnergieStadion, I see the Billy Goats holding firm against the bunksters from Bochum and holding out for a 2 – 0 or a 2 – 1 victory at home.
If you’re the gambling type, go for the “Two or three goals” and enjoy!
1. FC Köln 2 – 1 Bochum
I apologize profusely for the lack of posts in the past, Dear Readers, but all I can say is this. Fixing enough Internet problems to be able to afford to Go to Europe, to MUNICH, of all places, the most expensive city to live in in all of Germany, (which happens to be the richest country in Europe), for a football match, Follow them to BERLIN, one of the other most expensive cities in Germany….
AND THEN, on than two weeks notice, Re-Schedule your flight to go to France instead of Germany, get a Champion’s League ticket to the second leg of the semi-final with your squad, get a hotel in enemy territory and re-schedule your ENTIRE Footy Fantasy trip to Europe because your team WHOOPED MANCHESTER UNITED’S ASS BY SCORING TWO AWAY GOALS, JUST LIKE AGAINST FIORENTINA!!!!!!
Well, you have to bust ass for a solid 4 – 6 months to be able to afford to do that on about 2 hours notice, and you have to SAVE YOUR MONEY by spending your spare time blogging for people who don’t read what you have to say in order to stop yourself from spending that cash, and instead, spending that time of dreaming that the day that you CAN go to the Old Country, that you CAN go to a REAL Football Stadium and not be watching fools in helmets yelling “Hut!”
You dream of going to the Old Country, to a land where they speak a language you can barely understand, and being able to simply point to the television and say “Football”, and then show them your “Colours” by presenting the crest or insignia of your team, and know that chances are, one in three people will smile and show you their own “Colours” and even if you don’t speak their language, you will be able to share an experience based on a common love for the Beautiful Game.
That’s why we call it the Beautiful Game, Dear Readers. Because it doesn’t matter who you are, where you come from, or what your team happens to be, we can all learn to appreciate the beauty of Football.
We’ll be back soon with more tales and predictions from Your Humble Narrator on the goings-on in the Bundesliga here on everyone’s favorite German Footy Blog…..