Battling the Drop | The Rule of Four…

Welcome, to the THIRD INSTALLMENT of ‘Battling the Drop’  – we’ve only played four matches since I last updated you guys, but don’t worry: a lot has changed in the merry land of the Bundesliga…

Luke – Paderborn (Current Position: 9th)

Now, let me make something abundantly clear: I only count my chickens once they hatch – but I’ve made a solid start to life in Germany…

We started the session with an away game against Illertissen in the German Cup – and it compounded my Pre-Season woes (yep, my attitudes have juxtaposed a few times already in this series) – and we scraped a 2-1 win. I selected a strong side – but we were toothless and Illertissen deserved more from the game then an extra-time sucker-punch!

Paderborn

We then started our Bundesliga campaign at home against Mainz, and we were atrocious (again). Ellias Kachunga put in a good shift, and got the goal to prove that point, but there were far too many passengers: and from that moment on I decided to tear up the rule book…

We faced Dortmund, in Dortmund, next and I was expecting a thumping – no matter what I decided to tinker or change. I was wrong. Paderborn Tactic

I made numerous changes to the side, drastically changed out tactical ethos and went into the game with a siege mentality. Out-classing Dortmund was never an option; out-working them was!

We scrimped to a 0-0 draw, and the Paderborn were alive and kicking once more…

My final game of the session was by far the most important of them all: we faced Tom’s Koln side at home! Despite slight fitness worries, I decided to name an unchanged side for the game and we romped to glory in the seasons first head-to-head game.

Koc came on for Kachunga after just 4 minutes and performed superbly: he managed to find twine after just 15 minutes on the pitch! We remained solid defensively and pulled through, despite an onslaught of Koln shots…

Tom – Koln (Current Position: 11th)

Koln faced lower league opposition in their German Cup game and breezed through without breaking a sweat. Tom opted to field a heavily rotated side for the match, with the aim of preserving his first-teamers leagues for the opening day of the season: it worked…KolnKoln (dressed in their offensive 4231) managed to pull off a major scalp on the opening day of the Bundesliga with a well-deserved 2-1 victory over Dortmund. Their first goal came from a well worked corner routine, but Koln were soon pegged back when Adrian Ramos was felled in the box; awarded a penalty; and smashed it home! A piece of individual brilliance allowed Mavraj gave his side the lead, and they were able to cling on for dear life!

Tom’s side faced a road trip to Freiburg next, a so-called ‘winnable game’, but their progress was stunted. An early goal from Maximillian Phillip rattled ‘Der FC’ for much of the game – a lucky bounce brought them back into the match…

Then the game that we were all waiting for: Paderborn v Koln. As you already know, my Paderborn side reigned supreme, but Koln did put up a fight…

Adebayo Akimfenwa lead the line for the visitors, and went close after just five minutes: rattling the crossbar with a lethal long-rang strike! However, aerial frailties in Koln’s defence allowed Paderborn to steal the impetuous, and take the three points!

James – Hertha (Current Position: 12th)

Hertha Berlin most certainly drew the short straw. Trips to Wolfsburg and Hoffeniheim are hardly an ideal way to start a relegation dogfight!

James started the session with a routine victory over SW Rehden, unveiling his new 442 formation with a glossy shine! Solomon Kalou was particularly impressive…

Hertha1

However morale would have deteriorated rapidly amongst the Hertha ranks following their comprehensive 4-1 defeat at the hands of Champions League chasers Wolfsburg. Per Clijan Skjebred gave Hertha an underserved lead after 13 minutes; Naldo, a formidable Brazilian centre back, gave the hosts a way back into the game just shy of the half-an-hour mark. Ivica Olic, Chirstian Clemens and Robin Knoche also found the net to give Wolfsburg a well deserved victory!

Frankfurt were up next for James’ side, and they returned to winning ways: courtesy of a Solomon Kalou penalty brace! Both spot kick were deserved, two silly challenges from Inul gave the referee no choice…

Hertha’s final game of the night came against Hoffenheim and Die Alter Daime continued their return to form. Per Cijan Skjebred continued his fine goalscoring form to equalise on 59 minutes!

Current Standings…

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To conclude!

Things are heating up on ‘Battling the Drop’, but as things stand 4 seems to be the magic number.. Will we be able to keep our sides in the Bundesliga?

Before you and I go our separate ways for now: be sure to surf around the site, drop my Facebook Page a like; join our Facebook Group! But more importantly – have a good day, but have an even better week…

 

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