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Bundesliga

  • January 28, 2011
  • • 19:30
  • • BayArena, Leverkusen
  • Referee: M. Gräfe
  • • Attendance: 28013
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Live Commentary

  • FULL TIME! Leverkusen move to within eight points of Dortmund as Hannover stumble to another disappointing result. Vidal's goal was pure class and Rolfes' combination with Castro was superb - that's all Leverkusen needed to take three points. That's all from here - I hope you enjoyed tonight's coverage. Until next time, all the best.
  • 90' + 1'
    Stindl takes an ambitious volley from 20 yards, and it loops wide and over the bar.
  • 90' + 1'
    Djakpa to take a corner...two minutes to be added.
  • 90'
    Substitution Renato Augusto Manuel Friedrich
  • 90'
    We're in the closing seconds and the hosts are still running hard. It's a tremendous effort they've put in today.
  • 87'
    Substitution Gonzalo Castro Hanno Balitsch
  • 87'
    Hanno Balitsch replaces Castro now. By the way, a moment ago, Ballack took a good shot from distance, but it was always rising - just a bit over the bar.
  • 86'
    CASTRO! SAVED BY ZIELER! Great work by the goalkeeper to come off his line, but Castro's second touch was far too strong. He had initially taken Vidal's through ball well, but the second touch denied him a shot.
  • 84'
    Hannover really running out of ideas now - they looked dangerous for a spell, but have lacked an edge in the last couple minutes...
  • 81'
    Controversy here - Rolfes wins a free kick and an instant later, Stindl comes in late on Vidal, who goes down in a heap. Surprisingly, no booking is issued by referee Manuel Graefe...
  • 80'
    Hannover cause all the alarms to go off in the Leverkusen defence before a long clearance goes towards Derdiyok Zieler is well out of his goal to clear.
  • 78'
    Substitution Sergio da Silva Pinto Sofian Chahed
  • 78'
    Final substitution for Hannover - Slomka takes off Pinto and brings on Sofian Chahed.
  • 76'
    Substitution Stefan Kießling Eren Derdiyok
  • 76'
    First substitution for Leverkusen: Eren Derdiyok replaces Kiessling. Meanwhile, Pinto has gone off to receive some treatment.
  • 76'
    First substitution for Leverkusen: Eren Derdiyok replaces Kiessling. Meanwhile, Pinto has gone off to receive some treatment.
  • 74'
    RENATO AUGUSTO....SAVED! Brilliant from Vidal to win the ball back before he and the Brazilian combine with a couple 1-2s. Zieler reads the play very well, and blocks Renato Augusto's shot to concede a corner.
  • 72'
    SCHULZ! GREAT SAVE ADLER! Brilliant work as Schulz jinks past Schwaab with apparent ease before firing an excellent shot on goal. Adler reaches an arm out to tip the ball away at full stretch. Much better from Hannover!
  • 70'
    Substitution Konstantin Rausch Constant Djakpa
  • 70'
    Next substitution for Hannover: Constant Djakpa replaces Rausch
  • 68'
    ABDELLAOUE!!! What a cross from Cherundolo! But to the striker's dismay, he heads over the bar - what a waste!!
  • 67'
    Hannover clear and look to break, but are ultimately forced to slow down and build up. The hosts have put in a trmeendous collective effort in terms of distance covered.
  • 66'
    Renato Augusto wins a corner, and Leverkusen bring all their tall figures forward...
  • 64'
    OH, IT BACKFIRES! After a poor free kick, Leverkusen burst forward with numbers. Vidal plays a fine ball to Castro, who is pushed just a bit too far and wide. He tries a cross, but it's blocked. That could have been a wonder goal with a bit more precision.
  • 62'
    Good control by Ya Konan, who wins a free kick from Rolfes. Mirko Slomka singled out set pieces as critical for the Hannover cause today - let's see if they can make something of this one.
  • 61'
    Stoppelkamp is dispossessed at the edge of his attacking penalty area and Leverkusen break forward. Nothing comes of it ultimately, but the visitors are committing more and more resources to attack, leaving acres of open space at the back.
  • 59'
    YA KONANNNNN MISSES! Glorious play by the Ivorian, who beats both Leverkusen centre halves before blasting his final effort over the bar. Credit to Adler for coming out to contest the shot, but Ya Konan should have kept his shot down!
  • 58'
    First substitution for Hannover - Moritz Stoppelkamp replaces Schmiedebach to add a bit more on the flank.
  • 57'
    Substitution Manuel Schmiedebach Moritz Stoppelkamp
  • 57'
    Ballack...close! He just doesn't have quite enough pace anymore! Kiessling plays a through ball in that rolls just a bit too far for the veteran, who tries to chip in a cross from the right byline. Zieler leaps and catches.
  • 54'
    Ooh, close! From the resulting free kick, Kiessling sticks out a leg and only has to volley home, but can't quite connect!
  • 54'
    Pinto comes in from behind Vidal to concede a free kick - the Hannover midfielder is on thin ice now after conceding a number of free kicks...
  • 52'
    Ya Konan reaches a through ball from Pinto, but is well offside - free kick to Leverkusen.
  • 51'
    Silky passing again among the Leverkusen midfielders, who are fully comfortable pinging the ball around the middle.
  • 50'
    Haggui defends well when one-on-one with Kiessling - the defender denies a shot, then wins a free kick after beating the striker to the ball.
  • 49'
    Rolfes has a good idea, but his through ball is intercepted by Pogatetz.
  • 48'
    Schulz gets forward on the left, but swings his cross out of play.
  • 47'
    No changes have been made as of yet, which for Hannover is a rather curious decision - they need two goals to take anything from this match, and by the looks of it, aren't going to get any.
  • 46'
    AND WE'RE UNDERWAY AGAIN!
  • HALF TIME! Leverkusen enter the break with a comfortable and deserved lead - they've by far been the better team thus far, and touches of class from Vidal and Castro/Rolfes have made the difference. Hannover have an Everest to climb - I'll be back in 15 minutes to keep you up-to-date.
  • 45'
    One minute to be added...
  • 45'
    One minute to be added...
  • 43'
    Another chance for Renato Augusto, who fires in a shot from distance, which is saved. The hosts have really dominated this match, although you have to feel sorry for Hannover for having that chance called offside just before the 2-0.
  • 43'
    And just like that, Hannover fall even deeper into trouble. Castro makes it looks easy as he slips a perfectly timed through ball to Rolfes, who collects at the edge of the six-yard box and finishes well past Zieler. 2-0 it is!
  • 42'
    Assist Gonzalo Castro
  • 42'
    Goal Simon Rolfes
  • 42'
    TOOOOOOOOOR ROLFES MAKES IT 2-0!
  • 42'
    RAUSCH! Offsides! Rausch is played into the penalty area and looks onside, but play is called back. Adler makes a good save, anyway.
  • 41'
    Good work by Ya Konan, who brings Cherundolo into the fray with a through ball. The right back's cross disappoints, however.
  • 39'
    Zieler spils Renato Augusto's long-ranged effort, but no Leverkusen man is in position to follow-up, and the goalkeeper pounces to claim the ball.
  • 38'
    Kiessling! Quite an ambitious shot, that - Castro has no angle to shoot on goal and elects to cross to Kiessling, who fires a first-touch volley high and wide.
  • 37'
    ABDELLAOUE! Oh, the Norwegian striker was JUST offside as a through ball deflected off Ya Konan. It's a shame for the Hannover man, who was past Kadlec and on his way towards goal had it not been for the linesman's call.
  • 35'
    Ooh, that's a poor foul by Vidal on Pinto, whose ankle gets caught. That's a painful challenge!
  • 34'
    Hyypia, who hasn't looked all that bright thus far, is beaten by Stindl on the right before Rolfes bails him out with a clearance
  • 33'
    Ooh, close! Ballack flicks a free header towards the back post, but Kiessling is a stride behind as the ball continues out for a goal kick.
  • 32'
    Pinto comes in with a poor tackle on Ballack (no surprise) to concede a free kick. It was a wise tackle from the Hannover man - Ballack was looking ominous as he raced forward.
  • 30'
    Great run by Schulz! The left back is free to tiptoe up the byline after being released on the overlap, but is inches offside!
  • 29'
    Ooh, good interception by Kadlec - Ya Konan tried to thread the ball through to Abdellaoue, who was unmarked.
  • 27'
    Next chance for Leverkusen - Renato Augusto has a 20-yard shot caught in the centre of goal. If this continues, they're bound to get another eventually...
  • 25'
    Silky passing from Leverkusen before Kiessling dribbles to the edge of the box. The German's final shot lacks power, though, and Zieler has no trouble making a save.
  • 24'
    Ya Konan does well to make a bit of space on the left corner of the box, but his final shot swerves wide of the left post.
  • 24'
    By the way, in case it wasn't clear by now, Vidal is the most advanced Leverkusen centre midfielder - Ballack and Rolfes are deeper.
  • 23'
    Ballack comes in late on Pinto to concede a free kick. Clumsy, or calculated?
  • 22'
    Top class strike from the Chilean, who does well to take down a long ball before setting up Kiessling. The striker is unable to get off a shot, but the ball bounces to Vidal, who strikes a thundrous volley into the net from 20 yards. Brilliant goal!
  • 21'
    Assist Stefan Kießling
  • 21'
    Goal Arturo Vidal
  • 21'
    TOOOOOOOOOOOOOR VIDAL!
  • 17'
    And at the other end, another close call! Vidal stretches out a leg to claim a ball over the top and Cherundolo makes contact to put him off his feet...but again, no foul.
  • 17'
    Ooh, clever ball over the top to Abdellaoue, but Hyypia and Reinartz are all over the Norwegian, who appears to be pushed from behind by Hyypia. He falls over and Adler claims, but there is no foul called.
  • 16'
    Ya Konan and Stindl hold up the ball deep in their attacking third, but the pair are cornered and never look like breaking down a very well organised Leverkusen defence.
  • 14'
    Hannover look to counterattack, but Ballack fouls Ya Konan near the midfield line.
  • 12'
    KIESSLING AGAIN! And offside again, this time by a much closer margin - the Hannover defence is living dangerously in such an advanced line...
  • 10'
    VIDAL! Ooh, just wide of the left post! Ballack picks out Castro with a precise ball out to the left before the recipient sets up Vidal at the edge of the penalty area. The Chilean shoots from distance, but misses by a close margin.
  • 9'
    Great run by Stindl up the middle before Hyypia makes a strong challenge to deny the winger.
  • 8'
    KIESSLING IS THROUGH ON GOAL AND!!! offside! Kiessling and Vidal had a 2 vs 1 with Zieler, but the German was a stride ahead of the last defender when Castro played the final ball.
  • 7'
    Good defending by Schwaab, who prevents Ya Konan from dribbling into the penalty box. The Ivorian striker then gets the ball back in good position before Reinartz makes a timely intervention to concede a corner.
  • 4'
    Renato Augusto is looking bright for Leverkusen thus far - he's constantly finding himself in the midst of the action.
  • 2'
    And there's the first shot of the game - Abdellaoue fires from 35 yards or so and the ball is easily collected by Adler on one bounce.
  • 2'
    Here's the first foul of the game - Renato Augusto comes in late on Abdellaoue to concede a free kick.
  • 2'
    It will be interesting to see how Ballack reacts to Sergio Pinto - it was Portuguese-German's tackle that broke his tibia earlier in the fall!
  • 1'
    AND LEVERKUSEN KICK OFF!
  • Manuel Friedrich comes on for the final few seconds, replacing Renato Augusto...
  • Hello, and welcome to Goal.com's LIVE coverage of Leverkusen vs Hannover! I'm Clark Whitney, and I'll be keeping you company for the next two hours or so...
  • Leverkusen enter tonight's match in second place, having won their most recent match against Gladbach. Michael Ballack returns to Jupp Heynckes' starting line-up as part of a central midfield trio including Arturo Vidal and Simon Rolfes.
  • Hannover are just two points behind Leverkusen , and would leapfrog their hosts into second place with a win tonight. The 96ers will have to improve upon last week's loss to Schalke if they are to take something from tonight's game, however.
  • Here's the starting line-up for Leverkusen, in a 4-3-2-1 shape: Adler - Schwaab, Reinartz, Hyypia, Kadlec - Vidal, Ballack, Rolfes - Renato Augusto, Gonzalo Castro - Kiessling
  • The Leverkusen attack might also morph into a 4-2-4 with Ballack in the deepest part of an attacking diamond.
  • Here's the line-up for Hannover, in a 4-4-2 formation: Zieler - Cherundolo, Haggui, Pogatetz, Schulz - Stindl, Schmiedebach, Pinto, Rausch - Abdellaoue, Ya Konan
  • The players are on the pitch, and The Verve's "Bittersweet Symphony" is sounding on the PA system. Curious choice!
  • Kick-off approaching now - we're just moments away!