PREVIEW: WEEKEND GERMAN ACTION
Steve Cherundolo and Hannover 96 move up to second place in the Bundesliga with a win against Frankfurt while David Yelldell and Duisburg started the second half of the season off right with a 4-1 win.
Eintracht Frankfurt 0-2 Hannover 96
Both Ricardo Clark and Steve Cherundolo played in the backline for their respective teams as Hannover moved up to second place after a win against Frankfurt.
Clark played the full 90 minutes as part of a makeshift defense that Michael Skibbe assembled due to a long list of injuries, but that wasn't able to get any points at home.
Captain Cherundolo led a well-organized defense over the full 90 minutes, but DaMarcus Beasley wasn't in the squad that traveled to Frankfurt.
Frankfurt started off well and was definitely more active in the first 15 minutes, but it would be Hannover that struck first.
Sergio Pinto was able to take possession from Benjamin Köhler in midfield and then fed Mo Abdellaoue up front. The Norwegian forward beat Clark to the ball and put the ball past goalkeeper Oka Nikolov to put 96 up 1-0.
In the 21st minute, Christian Schulz would make it 2-0, when he headed a corner kick from Konstantin Rausch easily into the back of the net from just a few yards out.
It went quickly back and forth over the next 20 minutes without any real scoring opportunities. Eintracht came close to getting one back just before the half, but defender Kevin Kraus headed it just wide of the goal.
Skibbe substituted Martin Fenin at halftime to play two forwards up front. Play resumed just where it left off in the first half, with lots of pace and changes of possession.
Hannover was content to wait out the storm and play efficient, counterattacking soccer like they have all season. Frankfurt had trouble breaking through the 96 defense and often lacked the last bit of creativity to score.
Goalkeeper Robert Zieler was forced to make a save in the 75th minute, when Ioannis Amanatidis connected with a header.
Despite all of their effort, it would be Hannover and not Frankfurt that scored next. Lars Stindl passed to Didier Ya Konan in the middle. He left nothing to chance and powered a shot past Nikolov to end the game 3-0.
With the win, 96 moves into second place behind Dortmund and will look to continue their run next Saturday against Schalke.
Ricardo Clark and Frankfurt will be in Hamburg to take on HSV on Friday.
FC Nürnberg 0 - 1 Borussia Mönchengladbach
Michael Bradley played the last 20 minutes for Gladbach and Timothy Chandler was an unused substitute for Nürnberg as the Foals picked up their third win of the season.
The Foals had more than a little bit of luck on Saturday. A lone goal from Roman Neustädter in the eighth minute turned out to be the deciding factor. Things started off well for Nürnberg, as the home team tried to apply pressure, but it was Gladbach that struck first.
Neustädter connected with a cross from newly-signed Mike Hanke and sent a shot opposite of Nürnberg goalie Raphael Schäfer and put Gladbach up 1-0.
Schäfer was under fire just three minutes later when he deflected a shot from Marko Reus.
Nürnberg first real chance of the game would come in the 31st minute when Julian Schieber volleyed a shot that went just inches past the Christofer Heimeroth's goal.
And just two minutes later, the Foals were dealt a bit of good luck as defender Martin Stranzl – who had already seen a yellow card – seemed to pull Philipp Wollscheid to the ground in the area, but no penalty was awarded.
Hanke nearly had his second assist of the day in the 37th minute, but his pass into the area for Thorben Marx couldn't be put on goal. Nürnberg would also have a chance before the end of the first half, but the shot from Mehmet Ekici went just inches over the crossbar.
After the break, Nürnberg controlled the tempo and seemed to get better as the game went on. In the 70th minute, Mo Idrissou seemed to have fouled Wollscheid in the area – but once again, no penalty was given. Heimeroth then had to jump to clear a shot from Schieber just two minutes later.
Things got really sticky in the 78th minute when referee Babak Rafati called back a goal for Nürnberg. Markus Mendler was able to poke the ball away from Heimeroth into the Gladbach goal, but Rafati called a foul claiming that Heimeroth had posession. Replays would show that the goal should have been given.
Nürnberg would finally get a break in the 84th minute when Christian Eigler provoked a whistle after being bumped by Tobias Levels in the area. But it wasn't meant to be. Heimeroth deflected the shot from Javier Pinola and Gladbach would go on to win.
Michael Frontzeck made a few changes in his starting line-up, as Bradley was used as a 71st minute substitute instead of playing from the startinh whistle. Chandler made his first appearance in the Nürnberg squad but didn't see any playing time.
The Foals face Bayer Leverkusen next Sunday.
Karlsruhe SC 1-1 Greuther Fürth
Goalkeeper Luis Robles played the full 90 minutes for Karlsruhe as his team tied Greuther Fürth at home on Friday.
Just under 9,000 fans were on hand to see KSC play to the draw against Greuther Fürth. Team officials were expecting - or at least hoping - for more than double that amount as an added means of support to get them away from the relegation zone.
The beginning of the game seemed to belong to Delron Buckley. KSC's newly-signed midfielder put a lot of pressure on the wing and and seemed to set the tone for the first part of the game.
But Luis Robles would be the first goalkeeper to get called upon when he had to punch away a Fürth free-kick in the second minute. Just four minutes later, KSC had a great chance when a long-distance shot from Matthias Zimmermann struck the crossbar and bounced back into play.
Buckley was taking care of free-kicks for KSC and he proved his skill in the 21st minute when he placed one just past the post from outside the area.
Two minutes later, Robles would be called on again when Nicolai Müller got a ball in the middle on the other side, but his hard shot was deflected well by the American goalkeeper.
Both teams slowed down considerably until the end of the half, with the only chances coming from corners and free-kicks, and they went into the break tied at zero.
But it wouldn't stay scoreless for long. To begin the second half, Fürth's Danijel Aleksic sent a long cross in to Müller who was left alone to put a shot on goal. Robles got a hand on it but wasn't able to stop it from going in the far corner to put Fürth out in front.
It took KSC a while to get back into the game following this setback. But scoring opportunities for the two brothers Matthias and Sebastian Langkamp - both defenders - in the 60th and 66th minute served as a wake-up call. Then, just two minutes later, a shot from Timo Staffeldt missed the Fürth goal by inches.
The game would take a dramatic turn in the 74th minute when Fürth's Aleksic was sent off. He saw his first yellow for kicking a ball after play had stopped and then his second for complaining about it, leaving the visitors with just 10 men.
Just three minutes later, KSC would even things up. Fürth defender Bernd Nehrig didn't get a clean challenge on Gaetan Krebs in the area and the referee pointed to the spot. Veteran Alexander Iashivili put the shot past Jasmin Fejzic to level things at 1-1.
The game ended in a tie with neither team being able to create any more real scoring chances. Next Saturday Robles and KSC will travel to Aachen.
MSV Duisburg 4-1 VfL Osnabrück
David Yelldell played the full 90 minutes for Duisburg as the team took another step toward the Bundesliga.
Duisburg started the second half of the season off right, scoring four goals at home and defeating Osnabrück. Yelldell put in another good performance for the Zebras and only had to pull the ball out of his own goal once.
The game started quickly with the home team going on the board early.
Filip Trojan made his way past Nicky Adler on the left side before outclassing Tobias Nickenig and shooting past goalkeeper Tino Berbig to put Duisburg up a goal in the fifth minute.
Osnabrück had problems getting out of their own half in the first 20 minutes. Their first real scoring opportunity would come in the 26th minute when Kristoffer Andersen was left open on the corner of the penalty area for a shot on goal, but this was taken care of easily by Yelldell.
Just four minutes later, the visitors would even things up. Duisburg couldn't clear a quickly-taken corner kick and Flamur Kastrati was able to beat Yelldell to even things up.
In the 38th minute, Kastrati would have a chance to put Osnabrück ahead. He collected a long ball and made his way to the goal but Yelldell came up with another save for the home team.
The second half began like the first half, with the home team needing just five minutes to go out in front. Olivier Veigneau made his way down the left flank and sent a cross into Stefan Maierhofer who headed his ball into the back of the net.
The Zebras didn't let up again. Sefa Yilmaz scored in the 57th minute when his shot from the edge of the box was deflected by defender Jan Mauersberger and Berbig couldn't get a hand on it.
Conceding those two goals left Osnabrück shocked and the team wasn't able to get anything going on offense.
Duisburg would make it four in the 83rd minute, when Olcay Sahan scored after a mistake from Osnabrück captain Angelo Barletta.
Yelldell and Duisburg will look to stay on top when the team travels to FC Ingolstadt on Friday.
Jermaine Jones wasn't in the squad in for Shalke as they lost to Hamburg on Saturday 1-0. Reports in the media have stated that the midfielder is close to signing a deal with Blackburn in the Premier League.
Amaechi Igwe and Edson Buddle weren't included in the Ingolstadt team that lost 2-0 to Augsburg on Saturday. Igwe is injured and Buddle hasn't officially been released by the MLS yet. A decision regarding Freddy Adu's future at the club should be made in the next few days.
Daniel Williams is out injured and wasn't in Hamburg for Freiburg's 2-2 draw to St. Pauli on Saturday.
Alfredo Morales has returned to Hertha Berlin's second team, and is unlikely to be present when they visit Rot-Weiß Oberhausen on Monday evening.