DFB Pokal final: How Bayern Munich and Bayer Leverkusen booked season finale places

Hold your horses, people! German football is not over yet.

Although the title was over, Joshua Kimmich’s genius resulted in seven matchdays remaining, the race for the Champions League places and the relegation dogfight between Fortuna Dusseldorf and Werder Bremen meant that the 2019/20 Bundesliga The recent end of the campaign was a charm. one

And now we’ve got the DFB-Pokal final to enjoy.

Byron celebrates his eighth consecutive Meister Schell / KAI PFAFFENBACH / Getty Images

Germany’s FA Cup tie comes to an end on Saturday night as Bayern Munich take on Bayer Leverkusen in Berlin.

The former are looking for another piece of an unlikely treble following the arrival of the Laughing Flick in November, while the latter – a club regarded as the perennial underachievers or ‘Bottlers’ – have two Considered blunt – will be looking for his first piece of silverware ever since. 1993.

There is sure to be plenty on the line Saturday night but first, let’s take a look at how the two sides got here in the first place.

Bayern’s DFB-Pokal journey begins with Niko Kovac / TF-Images/Getty Images

Die Rotten’s journey began amid Niko Kovac’s dark spell in Bavaria, as the Croat led his title-winning side to fourth-tier FC Energie Kottbus from last term in the opening round last August.

Goals from Robert Lewandowski (shock), Kingsley Coman (actually a shock) and Leon Goretzka ensured Bayern overcame potential banana skins in a 3-1 victory.

However, by the time the second term began, cracks had begun to emerge in Kovac’s de facto regime.

2. In the weeks leading up to their trip to Bundesliga outfit VfL Bochum, Bayern were beaten at home to Hoffenheim, drew at Augsburg and fell behind newly promoted Union Berlin at the Allianz. As such, it wasn’t much of a surprise to see Kovac’s side trailing Die Anabstegbern with ten minutes remaining after Alfonso Davies’ hilarious first-half own goal.

However, the visitors struck late on either side of Ermel Bila Kochip’s dismissal through Serge Gunbury and Thomas Muller to avoid humiliation.

Bayern hold off Hoffenheim’s late resurgence to advance to quarterfinals / DeFodi Images/Getty Images

Now in the last 16, Bayern’s ascension to Hansi Flick was well underway as they hosted Hoffenheim in early February.

And after Robert Hübner’s own goal saved Jerome Boateng’s embarrassment, before Müller and Lewandowski struck to turn the ball into their own net for the game’s opener – Bayern looked set for another emphatic victory. gave

Lewandowski scored another goal with ten minutes remaining, but the visitors came into play after that. Monas Duber grabbed a late double for Die Creich Gower to set up a tense final in Bavaria, but Flick’s men held on for a seven-goal thriller.

Kimmich’s stunning half-volley was enough to see off Schalke in the quarter-finals, before Bayern faced their toughest test against Eddie Hitter’s Eintracht Frankfurt in the semi-finals.

Ivan Perisic led the way in the opener against Eintracht/Pol/Getty Images.

Die Rotten’s early lead was rewarded by Ivan Perisic’s opener but an impressive display from Entracht led to a second-half equalizer through Danny Da Costa. Lewandowski would soon score the winner to secure their progress to the final, but the boy was made to work hard for it.

Kai Havertz returns to his former club in the first round /TF-Images/Getty Images

Like Bayern, Bayer’s journey began against lesser opposition. Kai Havertz’s former youth team and semi-pro outfit Alemannia Aachen were first on the agenda for Peter Bosz and after strikes from Kevin Volland, Leon Bailey and Havertz, the visitors progressed to the second round with a 4-1 scoreline. .

An exceptionally sound defensive display then saw Die Werkself squeeze past SC Paderborn – who have finished bottom of the Bundesliga this term but often spring a surprise or two through Lucas Alario’s first-half strike. Argentina benefited from the absence of VAR as replays showed the forward was slightly offside before crashing home.

The long break between rounds meant that a new Bayer outfit came out to play for their home round of 16 clash in Stuttgart.

The second-tier unit made life difficult for the confident hosts, Brains, and broke the deadlock with just over 20 minutes remaining with a goal past Stuttgart shot-stopper Fabian Bradlow. That man Alario later doubled the hosts’ advantage but a quick reply from Silas Wamangituka meant Bayer had to force out a 2-1 victory.

Moussa Diaby scores a swift counter to seal a 3-1 victory over Union Berlin in the quarter-finals / Jörg Schüler/Getty Images

Die Werkself made the last four after coming from behind to defeat the Union at the Bay Arena in early March. Marcus Invargatsen gave the visitors the lead just before the break, but Bayer were merciless after Christopher Lenz’s second yellow card gave them a numerical advantage.

Havertz set up Karim Bellarabi to equalise, before Charles Arangois headed home from Kerem Demirbe’s corner and the brilliant Moussa Diaby finished off a typically slick counter with a fine stoppage-time finish.

Fourth-tier FC Saarbrucken were a miracle in the semi-finals of the 19/20 Pokal and Leverkusen’s surprise opponents. They knocked out Bundesliga opposition in the form of Cologne and Fortuna to set up a clash with Leverkusen, but when Diaby and Alario gave the visitors a quick 2-0 lead, Saarbrücken’s fairies The story seemed ready to end after closing. The doors

The hosts may have feared defeat but Leverkusen only scored once more, as Bellarabi fired the ball into the roof of the net to give Bosz’s side a 3-0 win and their first DFB-Pokal since 2009. Made it to the finals.

Hansi Flick has helped establish Bayern as one of the most powerful organizations on the planet since his arrival last November / Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images

Since Flick’s appointment, Bayern have been unremarkable and their style has rarely changed. Flick is all about spell fluency, pure speed, half-space penetration, a superior defensive line and suffocating intensity out of possession.

Bosz has a monumental task on his hands if he is to slow down this ruthlessly well-oiled machine but he had some success in their recent 4-2 defeat to Die Rotten without Kai Huertz.

Bayern’s press in a 3-4-3 formation disrupted Bayern’s build-up in the early stages, while they also managed to bypass Flick’s press as the game wore on after switching to a 4-2-3-1. was The key for Bayer is to make the most of the potentially rare moments they will have against Bayern in transition. They can certainly be gotten to with their ridiculously high defensive line and are especially vulnerable to right-handers.

Peter Bosz faces the daunting task of masterminding a Saturday night upset / Lars Baron / Getty Images

Creating overloads against the double axis of Kimmich and Goretzka will be crucial in the development of the ball and this is where the brilliant space exploiter Havertz comes to the party. However, the Bos will have to be wary of their superior defensive line – they were badly disorganized in the 4-2 defeat and were rightly exposed by an effective Die Rotten attack.

It’s safe to say that it would be a bit of a surprise if Leon Bailly lined up as a left wing-back.

All in all, although Bayern are heavy favourites, there’s no doubt that Bayer have the tools to pull off the upset on Saturday night – especially with Havertz at Bosz’s disposal this time around. Either way, it’s set up to be a corker.

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