While today demarks the exact half-way point of Kansas City Wizards preseason — 4 1/2 weeks down, 4 1/2 to go — former Wizard Josh Wolff is in a mid-week ‘game of the year’ for TSV 1860 Munich today. The Lions face rival and perennial powerhouse Bayern Munich at 1:30, shown live on Setanta Sports, in the quarterfinals of the German Cup. Bayern sits in first place in the Bundesliga, while 1860 are four points off promotion in the Bundesliga 2. Already, one second division side has reached the semifinals, as yesterday Carl Zeiss Jenna defeated Stuttgart on penalties.
While 1860 are technically the away side, both clubs share Allianz Arena (whose outer walls will be lit in Bayern’s red today rather than 1860’s sky blue). Though the two teams played in a friendly last month, ending in a 1-1 draw, they have not met in actual competition since the stadium opened for the 05-06 seasons. In fact, in the last four meetings (all friendlies) Bayern is 0-3-1 versus 1860. The derby — one of the game’s greatest and well detailed by The Scotsman today –is sold out at the stadium’s nearly 70,000-seat capacity. Bayern goalkeeper Oliver Kahn also chimes in with his take on the clash, including his hopes for the game ending in penalties, 10-9.
I’ll close with quotes from both sides:
Bayern manager Uli Hoeness: “There is only one option – a win. We don’t have the excuse that it’s just a friendly, this time it’s serious. And there can definitely be no excuses for losing to a second division side in the Cup. We’d be desperately disappointed with anything less than a place in the semis.”
1860 coach Marco Kurz: “My lads are really up for it. We want to achieve the impossible; we want a place in the semis….We’ll run and fight like lions.”
UPDATE: Wowza. In a game that featured three red cards and two disallowed goals but no Josh Wolff, Bayern advances on a controversial penalty given with 30 seconds remaining in the 2nd extra time period. It appeared the tackle was outside the box, but — despite having strong claims for a penalty ignored earlier in the match — the ref pointed to the spot for Bayern. The drama didn’t end there. After Ribery’s attempt found side netting, the man in the middle whistled for the kick to be retaken after a Bayern player entered the area too soon. Ribery’s second effort, this time a chip down the middle, was as successful as his first and saw Bayern through to the semi’s.
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