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Tag Archives: Schalke 04

Bundesliga wrap up match day 24

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Dortmund thrashed Bayern in this week’s top match, and some of the teams in the relegation zone break their recent patterns and make the fight for survival more interesting. Here is the Bundesliga wrap up for match day 24. Read the rest of this entry


Bundesliga wrap up match day 23

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“Der Club” from Nürnberg and the 96’ers from Hannover continue their fairytale seasons. Dortmund and Bayern win their matches, before their clash next weekend. Leverkusen is still 10 points behind Dortmund, and Gladbach snatched their first home victory of the 10/11 season. Here is the Bundesliga wrap up for match day 23. Read the rest of this entry

Bundesliga wrap up match day 22

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Bayer Leverkusen shortened the gap between them and Borussia Dortmund down to 10 points, Bayern Munich continued their good run at home, while the troubles continue for Mönchengladbach and Stuttgart. Read the rest of this entry

Bundesliga wrap up match day 20

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Nobody would be surprised if Tim Wiese’s favorite movie is “The Karate Kid”, or if anybody died during the game in the Veltins Arena of sheer boredom. Here is what happened in Bundesliga round 20. Read the rest of this entry

Bundesliga wrap up for the 19th match day

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Did you miss any of this weekend’s Bundesliga action. Don’t despair, I will from now on give a quick summation of every match day on this blog. So, let’s dive right into it. Read the rest of this entry

Quälix Magath, a history about pain

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He has been called “Saddam” and “the torturer” by his players. Felix Magath is known for his brutal training sessions, but how has he managed to become one of the most successful coaches in the history of the Bundesliga?

The Bundesliga season has taken it course, and Schalke seemed to return to the form of the last season. Winter had

Felix Magath adresses Jefferson Farfan.

arrived, and the massive amounts of snow that came from the sky made Germany look like a magical place that one otherwise only sees in commercials for CocaCola. But one Saturday afternoon nothing seemed to work. Christoph Metzelder and Benedikt Höwedes didn’t connect with keeper Manuel Neuer, Jermaine Jones passes were lackluster, Raul couldn’t bother to run. Kaiserslautern sent Schalke home with a whopping 5-0 defeat.

Back in Gelsenkirchen “the torturer” knew how he should punish his players: nobody was allowed to wear gloves or snoots. Magath left no room for misunderstandings, he was mad as hell.

More than torture
Given the fact that Magath has won three German championships, and the DFB-cup twice, one is tempted to ask: is there anything else to this man?

Magath is actually a well read man, who in his spare time often plays chess. The 57 year old has actually very often likened the tactics of football with the tactics chess players use to defeat their opponent. Magath’s strength as a coach is that he is able to build a functioning team with the players he has at his disposal. Magath himself has said about his players: “They have to understand strategy and tactics to play at the top level.”

Magath himself has pointed out that mainly the tactical schooling of his players has made him win titles, not his physical toughness of his training sessions.

Let them eat cake

Magath is famous for using medcine balls in his training sessions. Many former players have told German repoters that Magath's team loathes these balls.

However, Magath’s physically demanding training style has had the effect that the teams he has coached in the past at one point became tired of Magath, and the former German international and Hamburg star was shown the door. Raphael Honigstein made the exact same point in the last Bundesliga podcast by Dan Levy and the Eurosport2 Bundesliga commentators. Honigstein told Levy that “many players told you off the record that they couldn’t have managed to be exposed to Magath’s training sessions for another year”. Former Schalke defender Rafinha told the tabloid paper Bild that Magath’s training sessions were so brutal, that he now felt qualified to become a general in the Brazilian army.

I will finish my post by given another example of the brutality that Rafinha speaks about: Back in 2008, while being at Wolfsburg, Magath told a delighted group of players that the training for this afternoon had been canceled. The VfL had just finished another brutal training session in the training camp in Switzerland, and the players sat at their lunch tables. Magath told he delighted team that the players would be rewarded with coffee and cake at a cafe nearby with the provision that the players retain their training attire just in case.

The players turned up in their training attire at the gondola that was supposed to take them up the mountain to the cafe. The mood was good. Magath managed to make their smiles disappear with one sentence: he told the group of young players they would get up the mountain by running the full 2362 meters. The players of the VfL Wolfsburg had to run for two and a half hours straight up the hill with Magath running right behind the team. Star striker Grafite collapsed before the end, and it is reported that a number of players broke down in tears as they reached the summit where they were finally able to enjoy their coffee and cake.

Go north for a bargain

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On January 1st the transfer window will be open and struggling clubs are looking to strengthen their side. Here are 5 Norwegian players that might be ready to move from dreary Tippeliga football and into the big leagues.

Hannover 96 in particular know that the Tippeliga includes many bargains. Having spent just over 1.5 million euros has bought them their attackers Didier Konan Ya(former Rosenborg player) and Moa(ex Våleranga). Money well spent according to most experts.

It is already rumored that talented youngster Håvard Nordtveit is on his way to Borussia Mönchengladbach. Making him the second Norwegian after Moa Abdellaoue to make the move into the Bundesliga this season. Here is a list of the five most promising Norwegian players that might make the move to the Bundesliga or another European league in the near future.

May return: Håvard Nordtveit has already gathered some Bundesliga experience when he was on a loan spell at Nürnberg.

Erik Huseklepp

Has for a long time been regarded as one of the most talented players in the Norwegian Tippeliga. Mainz have already tried to sign the speedy and technically well versed winger, but dropped him when they felt ill-treated by Huseklepp’s club SK Brann Bergen.

Having found his place in the national side under Egil «Drillo» Olsen, it is high time for the 26 year old to make his move from the rainy city of Bergen and into one of Europe’s top-league’s. The boyish looking winger’s contract is running for another three years, and it is unclear how high Brann’s asking prize is. Moa Abdellaoue was in similar position before moving to Hannover, and had to be bought free for around 1 million euros.

Highlights: Erik Huseklepp has set the Norwegian Tippeliga on fire during his last few seasons at SK Brann.

Markus Henriksen
The talented youngster has already drawn the attention of Bundesliga club Werder Bremen. Hard working, the 18 year old is already able to read the game of football as if he has been playing at the top level for a long time. Being described as one of the greatest talents Norwegian football has ever produced, he certainly has a lot to prove.

Playing 26 of 30 matches in this years season(2010 season), he managed to get his name on the scoring sheet 7 times and 2 assists to his name. Having a long time contract he will certainly be a pricey man, but probably a lot cheaper then a player of his caliber who plays in one of Europe’s top-leagues.

Rune Almenning Jarstein
The hot tempered keeper has been among bottom-side Viking most stable players in his first season in Norway’s oil-capital. Jarstein has been capped 30 times at the youth level and 8 times at the senior level for his national side, and has had trials during his teens at European top clubs.

Jarstein has often been described as a good shot saver with a good areal control. The east-Norwegian seems certainly ready to move out of Norwegian and onto greater things. Having two years left of his contract, it is likely that Jarstein might move in one of the next two transfer windows.

Per Ciljan Skjelbred
Having already been linked with Schalke 04 last summer, the 23 year old Norwegian midfielder has already drawn the interest of several European sides. The young Norwegian has constantly been described as one of Europe’s most talented players, and will most likely move in the near future. Former Rosenborg manager Per Mathias Høgmo has been quoted saying: The sky is the limit for Per Ciljan.

Having scored 8 times in 136 Tippeliga matches, Skjelbred certainly has shown a lack of killer instinct in front of the goal.

The sky is the limit: Per Ciljan Skjelbred has been regarded as one of the most talented Norwegian players(Photo by Vegard Holen).

Mohammed Fellah
The 21 year old former team mate of Moa Abdellaoue is packing a hell of punch in front of goal, and is usually among the most committed players on the pitch when his team his in a tight fight.

Fellah has definitely shown that he might be ready for greater things, but might have to wait a season before he gets his big chance abroad.

Hammer blow: Mohammed Fellah proved that he packs a hell of punch in this year’s game against Viking F.K.

Should any names be added to this list? Leave your comment.