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UEFA Champions League
February 22, 2012
• 2:45 PM
• St. Jakob-Park, Basel
Referee: N. Rizzoli
• Attendance: 36000
V. Stocker 86'
I've been Alex Mott, thanks for joining me. And a special thanks to everyone who messaged me on Twitter. You know who you are!
90' + 4'
AND THAT'S IT. Full time. Basel have beaten Bayern Munich by one goal to nil. A late Stocker goal has given the Swiss side a goal advantage to take to Munich in three weeks time. Amazing stuff.
90' + 2'
Zoua shimmies his way past Lahm and Badstuber, and wins a corner for Basel. A corner which they try to hold in the corner, but fail to do.
90' + 1'
Some brilliantly resolute defending from the Swiss side there. Alaba and Lahm both try for shots on goal inside the area. But both times Huggel is there to block the danger.
Bayern are pumping everyone forward here. They really need that away goal.
Assist Jacques Zoua
Goal Valentin Stocker
GOOOOAAAALLLLL!!!!!!! And it's Basel who take the lead!! Zoua runs from right-to-left across the edge of the area, slips in Stocker, and the substitute smashes it across goal, into the bottom right-hand corner of the net. 1-0.
The ball's pumped into the Bayern box. Streller flicks it on, and for a brief moment, there looks to be some panic within Munich's ranks. But Boateng takes charge, and boots the ball out of the area for a throw in.
Yellow Card Rafinha
Robben on the left. Cuts inside. Shoots miles over. Stop me if you've heard this one before.
Alex Frei tries to get to the ball by the right-hand corner flag. Badstuber comes across though, and barges him off it. Something that Frei isn't too pleased about. I don't know German, but I don't need to be a lip-reader to know what he said wasn't very pleasant.
It's a corner to Bayern now, that Kroos whips in from the left. It comes in, and the referee blows for a foul for some push of some sort.
Shaqiri plays a long diagonal ball to Streller on the left flank. He puts the ball into the box, where Stocker tries to take a touch and shoot. He does the first bit, but it's so poor he has to run about five yards backwards to retrieve the ball again. Needless to say, he doesn't get a shot in.
Yellow Card Thomas Müller
AND IT'S GOMEZ!!!!! But Sommer saves. Again. And for his troubles, Muller comes in and completely takes him out when collecting the ball.
Franck Ribery comes off for Thomas Muller. And it's about time. If I typed "Ribery" and "cut inside" one more time, I thought I might scream.
The corner's played short, but eventually when the ball comes in, it's rubbish. Like you knew it would be.
It's Lahm with the ball now, 25yds from goal. He shoots on his right foot, and it's a great save from Sommer!! The youngster flies to his right, and tips the ball away for a corner.
Robben runs with the ball over the halfway line, cuts inside from the left, and plays the ball outside to Ribery who's making an over-lapping run. The Frenchman gets a cross in, but Basel clear.
Robben goes for power, but it's smashed straight at the wall.
Yellow Card David Abraham
Kroos plays a great ball through to Robben, who runs in on goal. Abraham brings him down just outside the area though, and Bayern win a free kick.
Some nice intricate play between Shaqiri and Steinhofer down the right, but the full back loses the ball wanting too much time. Ribery receives halfway inside the Basel, and goes on a run down the touchline. Huggel is following him all the way though, and puts in a great challenge to dispossess the Frenchman just on the edge of the area.
Half chance for Gomez there, as Rafinha puts a ball into the box for the German striker. He takes a touch, but Dragovic closes him down, and both of them end up on the floor in a bundle.
Toni Kroos finds himself with time on the ball 30yds from goal. There doesn't seem to be any options, so he shoots. Quite poorly.
It's Ribery again on the ball for Bayern, but he's knocked off the ball by Abraham. Brilliant defending from the young Argentinian. Ribery doesn't think so though.
Ribery, on the left flank, tries to take it past Steinhofer and Shaqiri with one touch. But the young, Swiss international isn't fooled, and nicks the ball off the Frenchman.
Whilst I was pretending to understand text speak, Marco Streller had a header saved by Neuer. And now, up the other end, Alaba takes the ball over the halfway line. He gives it out wide to Ribery, who plays it back to the Austrian inside the area. Some good defending by Dragovic though, means Basel clear the danger quite easily.
Finally. Someone willing to stick up for Basel. @DJfemz: "I really think Basels gonna win the match by 1 goal to nil.they're doing gr8." Thnx 4 ur cmmnt DJ.
Second half starts then. And both teams are kicking the opposite ways to which they were in the first half. Which makes sense.
Fabian Zahner, our man on the ground, has given me this nugget: "Only the Bayern players are warming up at half time. None of the Basel subs are anyhwere to be seen." Heiko Vogel is the happier of the two coaches then?
The response is overwhelming on Twitter: Bayern are going to win this. But only if they get Thomas Muller on. Jupp Heynckes, are you listening?
I'll be back in 15 minutes for the second half, but in the meantime, do hit me up @alexjmott on Twitter with any comments/predictions etc you may have.
And that's it. Half time here at St Jakob Park, and the scoreline is still Basel 0-0 Bayern Munich. Somehow.
Gomez receives the ball just over the halfway line, and leads a Bayern counter-attack. The former Stuttgart man though, decides to go it alone, and shoots straight at Sommer from 20yds. Needless to say, the shot's pitiful, and the Basel keeper collects it with ease.
Rafinha, just over the halfway line, knocks the ball through Fabien Frei's legs, and wins a free kick. A free kick that Robben will take. A free kick that is absolutely terrible.
Shaqiri with a corner for Basel from the left. He whips it in, and it doesn't beat the first man, and Bayern clear.
Brandon Hauser on Twitter has offered up his thoughts on tonight's game: "Basel is playing much more exiting, but are being parched from possession. That's why Bayern will win". My thoughts exactly.
Ribery gets the ball on the left, and CUTS INSIDE. He's not closed down though, and gets a shot away from 25yds, that Sommer saves well down to his right.
Shaqiri finds himself in space on the left-hand side of the area. He looks up, sees the run of Huggel, and cuts the ball back to him on the edge of the area. The veteran's touch is poor though, and Boateng clears the ball away long, up field.
Robben gets the ball on the left, and cuts inside. He sees the over-lapping run of Rafinha, and plays him in. The Brazilian tries to get a cross in, but Park's there, and blocks the ball out.
Ribery cuts in from the left - shock - and looks to play a cross field ball to Robben, so he can get it and cut inside. Park gets a good head on it though, and the ball goes out for a throw in.
Alaba gets the ball on the edge of the area, and shoots. The ball is swerving all the time, but Sommer gets a good pair of hands on it, and saves easily in the end.
This game has slowed down considerably, which gives me time to listen to some tactical analysis from our German football expert Clark Whitney, and steal it as my own: the problem with this Bayern back four tonight, is not Boateng or Badstuber, but Rafinha. His runs are all well and good, but he's just not covering back, which means Boateng is coming over to cover, leaving a 20yd gap between him and Badstuber. I know. Get me.
Gomez steals the ball from Xhaka on the halfway line, and plays the ball out to Robben on the right-hand side. The Dutchman then cuts inside - shock - and tries to shoot. It's blocked and Basel clear.
Alex Frei goes through, clean on goal!!! But the flag is up.
This could be about 3-2 already. Bayern look atrocious at the back. Where were Boateng and Badstuber there?
OH. And again Basel hit the woodwork. Park cuts inside from the left, plays A. Frei inside the area, and the former Dortmund man hits it first time onto the bar. What a game this has been so far.
HOW HAS THAT STAYED OUT!!!!!!! A cross from the right-hand side finds Dragovic, who heads from six yards out, only for Neuer to save onto the post, and watch as the ball trickles back across the line. Manuel Neuer might as well have whiskers and a tail after that save!
Kroos risked a back pass to Neuer there, and that really showed how bad the pitch is here at St Jakob Park. The ball bobbled all over the place, and Neuer only just got it away cleanly.
The corner's dreadful.
ANOTHER GREAT SAVE FROM SOMMER. Lahm cuts inside, plays the ball to Ribery, who takes a touch inside the area, and shoots at Sommer's near post. The Swiss keeper gets down well though, and the ball goes out for a corner. Ribery had to do better there.
Rafinha has the ball now, just over the halfway line. He plays it to Robben on the right touchline, who cuts insdie, and looks to find Alaba, who's making a charging run into the box. The cross though, is overhit, and Basel clear away any danger.
It's F. Frei now, down the right. He puts in a low, fizzing ball into the box, but Boateng gets his body in the way, and Bayern clear.
Basel go on their first attack, as Park plays it inside to Huggel. The Swiss international takes a touch, and lays it through to Streller, who goes down under a challenge in the area. The referee though, waves play on.
OHHH. That is a great save by Sommer. Robben plays a chipped ball into Ribery. The Frenchman chests it down, turns, and shoots straight at the keeper from eight yards out.
The Bavarians are just keeping it between themselves along their backline. So while they do that, the first thing to say, is that the pitch looks shocking.
Bayern get us underway, kicking from left-to-right, playing in their all black away kit.
Here we go then. The players are entering the pitch. Do not go anywhere. This'll be a good one.
Five minutes until kick off here at St Jakob Park. And it's absolutely buzzing.
Our man on the ground, Fabian Zahner, has an update on Bayern youngster, David Alaba: "Alaba stopped warming up with some pain in his foot. After some treatment he walks again."
"A lot of disappointment at Bayern. Everybody is searching for reasons, you can feel that everybody is unsure. The best medicine is to play good not to blame each other. Lahm should be the one to open his mouth. He is more a quiet charachter, but my wish is that he could kick some players in their butt"
Franz Beckenbauer has his say on German TV tonight. Of course he has: "Bayern are not stabile. They have to fight to get back their form. You can't win only by playing good. For decades it is like that, opponents give everything against Bayern. That's no news. The players have to give everything"
As always, if you have any comments/predictions/abuse direct your tirades @alexjmott on Twitter.
Bayern though, have Rib-Rob on the pitch. At the same time. And Mario Gomez. And Philipp Lahm.
The midfield pairing of Shaqiri and Xhaka is a really exciting prospect for tonight. Shaqiri, of course, has impressed massively for Basel this season, and was the lynchpin for Switzerland in their Euro U-21 championship final loss last summer. But it's his international team mate, who I'm really looking forward to watching. Granit Xhaka is only 19, but he's already on the radar of Juventus and Man Utd. A big performance tonight, and he could be joining his mate Xherdan with a move to one of Europe's big boys.
Bayern Munich: (4-2-3-1) Neuer; Rafinha, Boateng, Badstuber, Lahm; Tymoshchuk, Alaba; Robben, Kroos, Ribery; Gomez.
TEAM NEWS: FC Basel: (4-4-2) Sommer; Steinhofer, Abraham, Dragovic, Park; Shaqiri, Huggel, Xhaka, F. Frei; Streller, A. Frei.
This really though, does look like Bayern's to lose. Jupp Heynckes' side were utterly dominant in the group stage, only losing once, having put out a weakened side away at Man City. They beat Basel twice in last season's group stages: 3-0 and 2-1. And haven't lost to a Swiss side since 1987. Basel meanwhile, conceded 10 goals in their group: the most of any side to have qualified for the last 16.
It's going to be an absolutely fascinating encounter this one; there's that many sub-plots, it looks like the second act of a Dan Brown novel. Xherdan Shaqiri, Basel's young starlet, is on his way to Munich in the summer, and has his first chance to show the fans in Bavaria what he can do. Heiko Vogel, the Swiss club's manager, was a youth coach at Bayern for nine years, and has seen through the likes of Toni Kroos, Thomas Muller and Philipp Lahm. And, Markus Steinhofer, Basel's right back, left Bayern in 2008 for pastures new across the border.
Good evening everyone, and welcome to Goal.com's LIVE, play-by-play coverage, of FC Basel vs Bayern Munich. I'm Alex Mott, and I'll be your commentator for tonight's last 16 game from St Jakob Park. In an alternate world, this would have been Man Utd vs Bayern Munich, and I, almost certainly, wouldn't have been writing this for you. As it is, the Swiss side pulled it out of the bag, and I get the pleasure of writing about a team I've only ever seen play twice. Good luck everyone.
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