Archive for the ‘German Soccer’ Category

Staying connected with friends, family and football (soccer/fussball) are vitally important (sehr wichtig!) and over the past 3 years in particular technology has led the way in keeping us tuned in … think Skype, Vontage, Facebook, Twitter, etc.  On the ‘access to football’ side of things we have experienced a true Renascence and between cable/satellite/ and online streaming sources I can tune into virtually ANY Serie A (Italy), La Liga (Spain), Bundesliga (Germany) or Premier League (England) match.

Germany's only Bundesliga footie radio

However, my absolute favorite and 100% reliable source for German Bundesliga games is 90elf (90 eleven), Germany’s football/soccer radio, and THE source for live German language audio coverage of all Bundesliga games, German Cup (DFB Pokal) matches as well as select UEFA Europa League and Champions League fixtures featuring German clubs. Thanks to 90elf’s media & PR guy Martin Huelsmann, we recently completed a Q&A (Frage/Antwort) session explaining the who? what? where? when? of the station. I left the original Auf Deutsch (in German) and translated the essence for non-German readers. While the language barrier might keep you from enjoying 90elf coverage to the fullest, I contend listening to a Bundesliga game this way is the best method to learning Deutsch, or if nothing else, getting a true flavor of the beautiful game, German style … Enjoy!

90 sekunden, 11 Fragen (90 seconds, 11 questions)

Am Besten mit etwas 90elf Background starten: Wie lange in Betrieb? 90elf, Deutschlands Fußball-Radio,  überträgt seit August 2008 alle Spiele der 1. und 2. Bundesliga in voller Länge, einzeln und in der Konferenz, dazu den DFB-Pokal.

90-11 background: Germany’s soccer radio has been broadcasting since August 2008 including all Bundesliga (1st and 2nd division) games, in full length, individually or in conference  mode. Additional broadcasts include the German cup.

Warum gegruendet? Weil Fußball das beste der Spiel der Welt ist und in Deutschland für einen Spartensender bei König Fußball das größte Potential ist.

Why did you start/found the station? Soccer is the best game in the world and in Germany provides the best potential as a succesful niche station.

"Einfach Play Button klicken" (just press play) to hear live Bundesliga games

Hoererzahlen (historisch bis Heute): Mit über 2 Millionen Hörkontakten hat 90elf einen meisterlichen Auftakt in die Bundesliga-Saison 2011/2012 hingelegt und feiert damit gleichzeitig ein Rekordergebnis in seiner nun dreijährigen Geschichte. Zum Vergleich: In der letzten Saison wurde Deutschlands Fußball Radio pro Spieltag durchschnittlich 1 Million Mal eingeschaltet.

Listener statistics: Heading into the 2011/12 season, we registered over 2 million listeners, a new record in our short three year history. Comparatively, this is one million more than tuned into Bundesliga broadcasts last season.

Ausser Bundesliga-LIVE, was sind die LieblingsprogrammeGanz klar der 90elf-Bolzplatz, der interaktive Fußball-Talk auf 90elf in der Woche (dienstags, mittwochs, donnerstags 19.00 Uhr CET)  Hier kommen Fußballer, Experten, aber auch Fans zu Wort.

Besides the Bundesliga-LIVE broadcast, what are some other favorite programs? Clearly, our 90elf-Bolzplatz (training ground) show, featuring interactive soccer chats involving our experts, professional players and fans, is a big hit. It airs during the week – Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday- 7PM Central European Time.

Was is der ‘Fan-Favourite’ Lieblingsfeature auf der Webseite? Neben den Livestreams natürlich die Beiträge und Sendungen zum Nachhören, aber auch allgemeine Infos zum Tabellenstand und zum Programm.

What is the fan favorite/ fave website feature? The Livestreams and various on-demand programs and regarding. Also, anything related to the league table and stats.

Bitte erklaeren Sie das Verhaeltniss/Zusammenspiel zwischen 90elf und social media: Social Media ist gelebter Bestandteil unseres Programms: Wir binden die Hörer über Facebook & Co. aktiv ein, wo es geht. Bis hin zur Fankonferenz bei Facebook: Hier werden die User zum Programmdirektor und haben Einfluss zu welchem Spiel geschaltet werden soll und worüber gesprochen werden soll.

Please explain the interplay between 90elf and social media: Social media is a vital part of our programming and we try to connect our listeners at every turn through popular services like Facebook and our fan conference feature. The conference lets our listeners put on the ‘director’s hat’ and make decisions on which games are broadcast and what the play-by-play reporters should talk about.

Wie lauten die Zukunftsziele des Senders? Englisches Programming? Pay-per-view Abo/Subscriptionmodelle? Videos, Live-Stream oder andere Multimedia Formate? Mit der hohen Qualität unserer Berichterstattung sowie weiteren Live-Rechten und Übertragungskanälen wollen wir ganz klar auf die große nationale Fußball-Bühne. Mit den aktuellen  Zahlen  sind wir auf dem besten Weg dahin und haben die Qualifikation sozusagen erfolgreich bestanden.

What’s in 90elf’s future? Based on the high quality programming and reporting, we plan to take the station to the larger national soccer stage. The current fan interest and downloads give us the demand proof we need to move forward.

Das Prachtstueck des 90elf Fussball-Radios ist meiner Meinung nach der Moderatorkader. Wer gehoert den Bei Euch in die ‘Startelf’ ? Wer ist Mannschaftskapitaen? Kapitän ist Programmchef Fabian von Wachsmann, Chefreporter ist Tom Hilgers. Beim gesamten Kader gilt aber eigentlich: Der Star ist die Mannschaft. Aber natürlich freuen wir uns auch sehr, so einzigartige Reporterpersönlichkeiten wie Manni Breuckmann oder Günther Koch in unseren Reihen zu haben.

I am convinced the ‘crown jewel’ of 90-elf radio is your team of match reporters and commentators. Who comprises your top 11 and who is your captain? Our captain is program director Fabian von Wachsmann, chief reporter is Tom hilgers, and larger than life radio personalities Manni Breuckmann and Günther Koch are among our reporter ranks as well.

Letzte Frage: Der neue 90elf Fan hat nur 2stunden pro Woche Zeit fuer Euer Programming? Was ist eine ‘must listen’ Sendung oder Uebertragung? Beides: 90 Minuten Spiel und die restlichen 30 für den 90elf-Bolzplatz in der Woche, um keine Entzugserscheinungen zu bekommen.-)

Last question: What are the ‘must listen’ shows you recommend for a new 90elf fan who has 2 hours per week to spare? I say they listen to a 90-minute Bundesliga broadcast of their choice (or the conference option for all games in 90 minutes) and spend the other 30 minutes tuning into the ‘Bolzplatz’ broadcast.

Now that you have read this … you know what to do; check out 90elf.de, Germany’ go-to-source for Bundesliga radio broadcast action.

Kevin-Prince Boateng has undoubtedly earned his bad boy image over the years regardless of his spiffy threads

Ask professional footballer Boateng about his match performance on Sunday, October 23rd and you will get two wildly conflicting answers …  AC Milan attacking midfielder Kevin-Prince Boateng scored 3 goals in 14 minutes to lead a second half comeback from 0-3 down. Boateng scored the fastest Serie A hat-trick in 10 years (since former French International David Trezeguet did so in 10-minutes for Juventus back in 2001). And, teammate Mario Yepes grabbed a late winner as AC Milan came back from 3-0 down for a sensational 4-3 victory at Lecce Sunday. Check out this short clip of all 7 goals from the AC/Lecce match including Boateng’s killer strikes

While his brother was scoring a 14-minute hat trick for AC Milan, Jerome fought his way to a red card and early exit vs. Hannover

1900 kilometers North, in Hannover, Germany,  Kevin’s younger brother Jerome, a central defender for Bayern Munich and member of the German National Team, was shown a red card and ejected in the 28th minute of Bayern’s match vs. Hannover. Boateng lost his cool and pushed one of the Hannover players leading to a sideline melee and straight red card. A several-match suspension might follow as well.

The most recent Boateng newsflash is just the latest in what has turned into nothing short of a ‘True Hollywood Story’ especially after Kevin (who wears Prince on the back of his jersey) single-handedly removed Michael Ballack from the 2010 World Cup in South Africa (and as it turns out from the German squad for good!). The 2010 FA Cup Final set the stage when Boateng’s lowly Portsmouth squad faced off against league champs Chelsea in the Wembley finale. Just before half-time, Boateng swooped in and delivered a bone crunching (in this case right ankle twisting) tackle on Ballack forcing his early exit from the match as well as his medical withdrawal from South Africa. To make things stranger, Kevin had years before plead his allegiance to his native Ghana while his brother favored wearing a Germany jersey for ‘Die Mannschaft’. Of course, the press had a field day declaring that  Boateng had fouled Ballack on purpose in order to keep him out of the German lineup and more importantly out of the Germany vs. Ghana first round match. In hindsight, Boateng did Germany a huge favor and a Ballack-less squad played aggressive, fast and team-focused football ending up with a 3rd place world cup medal.  While both Boatengs faced off in the aforementioned Germany Ghana world cup game, their relationship has severely cooled since the dynamic duo played together for Hertha Berlin several years ago.

We want you ... to remember us like this: happy and united in Berlin (circa 2006)

Miroslav Klose, discarded by Hollywood FC (Bayern Muenchen) and released transfer fee-free past July, found a welcoming home in Roma and S.S. Lazio, the ‘other Italian 1st division (Serie A) team in the nation’s capital. The 33-year-old Polish born German who has set all sorts of scoring records with the German National Team, has enjoyed the move south due in large part to something very simple … he’s playing soccer regularly … and doing it very well. Since joining Lazio, Klose has scored 6 times in Serie A and Europa League games including match winners two weeks in a row. The latest, Sunday’s 93rd minute thriller against arch rivals AS Roma in front of rabid Lazio supporters at the Stadio Olimpico, marked for me Klose’s homecoming to Italian football and the beginning of another chapter in the series “German Footballers kick ass in Italy” … molto impressionante! I say homecoming, because to me, Klose has been a wanderer, looking for respect, ever since he ‘sold out’ and left Bremen for Bayern after the 2006/7 Bundesliga campaign. His saving grace … consistently dominant performances for Germany at all international competitions.

Out of this world, like the sign says ... Klose again displays extraterrestrial abilities with his ice cold winner to secure Lazio's victory over arch-rival Roma on Sunday

So Sunday, the world stage was set for the 167th edition of the  Derby della Capitale, the local derby between Rome’s major teams Roma and Lazio. Considered to be the fiercest rivalry in the country and one of the greatest and hotly contested capital derbies in Europe, the game and Miro Klose did not disappoint. A bit of background – since November 1953, all matches have been played in Stadio Olimpico, the 72,000+ capacity home pitch of both Lazio and Roma, and in total the two rivals have battled 167 times, 135 of those in Serie A competition. While Roma has tallied 17 more victories including the last 5 since December 2009, Sunday’s Lazio home performance and last-minute heroics put an end to that streak. If a picture is worth a 1000 words, a thrilling video clip is worth a million … here’s Miro’s goal and the ensuing mayhem.

 

Football is about passion and inspiration and Klose’s latest performance fueled my tank on both accounts. If you don’t ‘buy it’ from me, take the Lazio faithful’s word for it … Ole Ole Ole Kloseee

 

I am back to blogging and posting fun and hopeful interesting football/soccer stuff on the site so you can again get used to lots of fresh content … all leading up to UEFA’s EURO 2012 competition next summer in Poland and Ukraine

Last week kicked-off the first round of the 2011/12 DFB Pokal competition including 64 German professional and amateur football teams. The German Cup, equivalent to other countries’ domestic competitions such the FA Cup (England), Copa del Rey (Spain) and Coppa Italia (Italy),  lasts 10 months culminating in the cup final in Berlin on May 12, 2012.

To me, the coolest thing about this competition is the many ‘David vs. Goliath’ scenarios that unfold, especially during the early rounds. One such match-up last weekend included 5th tier BFC Dynamo vs. top flight Bundesliag club 1.FC Kaiserslautern. My dear friend, fellow Speyer Boy, and German football rowdy Wolfie D. braved the elements and attended the 1st round match-up which ended up with a lot more action than ‘just’ 9o minutes of cup football. This is much less a football match review but an eye-witness report of goonish rowdies looking for ‘aggro’.

Here’s Wolfie D. … The German Cup, like almost all national cup competitions in Europe, often provides great drama opportunities, especially in the early rounds. The early match-ups are often replays of old rivalries or like this one, brand new, never before played ones. This match featured the former serial champion of the GDR Oberliga, East German secret police Stasi backed Berliner FC Dynamo, which racked up an unbelievable 10 championships in series thanks to successful match-fixing commissioned by Stasi chief Erich Mielke between 1979 and 1988. On the visitor’s side, the glorious 1. FC Kaiserslautern, in no need of further introduction (at least I hope, as the merits of this club from deep in the Palatine Woods easily fills a proper book!).

Right after the 1st round draw, I absolutely knew this would be a big one! It’s no wonder BFC Dynamo’s luck went down the drain after the wall came down. With the Stasi (officially) disbanded, Erich Mielke behind bars, and all the best players hitting the exits for the wealthy clubs in the West, the club didn’t even make it into the combined German second division in 1991 and had to start again in the regional Northeast division, a league they have not been able to be promoted out of since. Money was tight with crowds getting smaller and smaller, and having probably one of the most violent and right-wing followings in Germany, didn’t really help acquire lucrative sponsorship deals. You might now rightfully ask why a communist secret police backed club attracted a bunch of right-wing violent loonies from the worst tower block areas of East Berlin?! Simple answer: they chose to support the most-hated club in the country because aggro following the club was almost guaranteed!

Which brings us to the present day, where the club plays in a lowly fifth division in the northern part of the German East in front of a couple of hundred fans at average games against teams who have only a handful supporters let alone hooligans. To put it bluntly, they’re in deep shit and qualifying for the national cup brings them BACK WIV A BANG on the big German football stage, prime-time TV coverage included.

Thanks to having resided in Berlin for quite some time now, this 1.FCK-BFC Dynamo match really wasn’t an away game, just a fifteen minute car ride and a ten minute walk and we were in the thick of things, literally! Making our way towards the away-end in the pissing rain – almost constantly pouring down for 36 hours at that point – we walked down the street where hundreds of proper hard-hitters, a lot of them in their forties, were boozing it up in front of a few pubs, closely monitored by a serious police presence, all with worried looks on their faces.

Entering the away-end and definitely feeling a lot safer (for the moment) it was a nice surprise to see almost 2000 FCK fans who had made their way to Berlin, sadly only about 20 who would be willing to have ‘a go’ if push came to shove. Violence would of course not be a smart move on a day like this, but that’s not what this whole game is about anyway.

Oh yeah, there was also a football game played that day, a quite uneventful 3:0 win for an FCK side which didn’t do more than they had to, but this was not what the majority of the spectators had come for on that day anyway. The away end consisted of one half of the stands behind one goal, separated by a large empty block towards the covered main stand, filled with 4000 to 5000 BFC supporters. The locals put on a good show singing and celebrating and started to let off smoke bombs during the second half, which led to a break by the referee trying to achieve the impossible: get things in order again… Not with this lot, my friend!

About five minutes before the end, we had already talked about leaving early to not get cordoned in for an hour until the police had cleared the surrounding streets, it was clear that something was seriously happening on the other side. People were leaving the covered stand towards our end although there wasn’t even an exit for them on that side. So we thought we better have a look what was going on outside while the majority of the all too care-free FCK supporters celebrated the team after the game had finished. Walking down the steps behind the end it was pretty clear what was going on; we basically walked in the middle of about 60 BFC boys on the right opposite of 10 K-Town lads on the left, with the police standing 30 meters behind looking away and unbelievably having no clue what was happening right in front of their eyes. This was the same police who had manned the separating block during the whole game but had mysteriously disappeared five minutes before the end of the game!

All hell started breaking loose after hundreds of BFC hooligans now made their way over the empty separation block abandoned by the police ten minutes earlier, chasing away families, kids, dads and younger FCK supporters, punching everyone in their way. Outside the grounds, the police were a sorry sight, with everybody, BFC and FCK, mingled together. It was sheer luck K-Town only had a small crew and BFC was too surprised about the ease of ‘infiltration’, that nothing more happened. BFC were now swarming in from the streets on all sides as well, but so were the police reinforcements so we got the hell outta Dodge and starting drinking to having gotten away…

The whole incident was all over the TV in the evening and the newspapers in the following days, with the police blaming the stewards for not having followed protocol. Apparently, they really had opened the gate between home and away ends, either because they were incompetent, scared of getting leathered by the big boys, or simply in on the whole goddamned thing! I just have a sneaking suspicion that the truth will somehow never come out.  Aside from this black mark, things might not be looking too good for BFC Dynamo’s footballing ambitions. Berlin suburb club Lichterfelder FC, the hosts of their first away game this coming weekend, have already announced that they’re not willing to play BFC under these circumstances. Stay tuned how another eventful 5th division season unfolds for BFC Dynamo.