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Mesut Oezil Goal Sees Werder Bremen Win DFB Pokal

Bayer Leverkusen 0-1 Werder Bremen  

After a goalless first-half shaded by Werder Bremen, the Green and Whites scored the only goal of the game 13 minutes into the second period through Mesut Oezil.

Werder have subsequently booked themselves a place in Europe next season having missed out via their Bundesliga position.      

First Half  

Both sides began the game brightly, but it was Leverkusen who created the more dangerous opportunities in the opening five minutes. A good run from full-back Michael Kadlec forced the first corner of the game, but Simon Rolfes was unable to get any proper direction on his effort.  

However, with just six minutes on the clock, it was Werder who could and perhaps should have taken the lead. Diego, playing his last game for the club, sent a cross into the penalty area where Sebastian Proedl got a good head to the ball but Leverkusen keeper Rene Adler did very well to parry it to safety.

A mishit ball into the penalty area on 13 minutes from Torsten Frings then very nearly ended up in the back of the net. Rene Adler had to scramble back to claw the ball out from the top left-hand corner of his goal.    

Werder were on the front foot and were the ones causing more danger on their opponent’s goal. On the quarter of an hour mark, Claudio Pizarro laid the ball back to Frings, whose shot was well blocked at the last minute by Manuel Friedrich.  

A great run from Renato Augusto on 22 minutes produced the clearest chance of the game when his cut-back from the right fell to Patrick Helmes. His fluffed shot however went harmlessly wide of the post.    

The pace of the game showed no signs of letting up and a free kick from Werder centre-back Naldo caused the next moment of worry. His superbly hit shot from the set-piece caused Adler to spill the ball, and with three Werder players on the follow-up, Diego fired his shot at the Leverkusen keeper when he perhaps should have left the ball to Frings.  

A minute before half-time and Adler once again had to be on his toes to deny Werder once more. Naldo got his head to a Diego free kick, but the Leverkusen keeper pulled off a superb reflex save to keep the match scoreless.  

Second Half  

Werder began the second 45 minutes the brighter of the two sides once again but were unable to convert their slight dominance into a goal with captain Frank Baumann firing well wide on 47 minutes.  

Bayer then got forward and were a little unlucky when Clemens Fritz deflected a free kick from Tranquillo Barnetta over the bar.    

Nine minutes into the second period though and a moment of brilliance from Mesut Oezil almost brought the opener. The midfielder controlled the ball superbly before beating Gonzalo Castro at the byline. His cut-back however found nobody and the chance went begging.  

Four minutes later though and Oezil made up for it with the opening goal. A long punt from Time Wiese was headed on by a Leverkusen player to Pizarro, who laid the ball back to Diego.  He then threaded a great ball through to Oezil, who fired past Adler from a tight angle with a deflection off Manuel Friedrich.      

Leverkusen tried to attack, but Werder managed to keep them largely at bay with Renato Augusto and Stefan Kiessling particularly lively. 

However, on 84 minutes goal scorer Oezil was clean through and Adler had to race off his line quickly to clear.    

Bruno Labbadia sent on both Toni Kroos and ex-Werder striker Angelos Charisteas and reverting to three at the back in the search for the all-important equalizer.  

Werder though were resolute and held out for the 1-0 to claim the Pokal and make up in some way for their defeat in the UEFA Cup final.        

Goals  

0-1  Oezil (58)  

Bayer Leverkusen: Adler, Castro (Charisteas 85), Friedrich, Kadlec, Rolfes, Vidal (Kroos 85), Renato Augusto, Barnetta, Kiessling, Helmes

Werder Bremen: Wiese, Fritz, Proedl, Naldo, Boenisch, Baumann (Niemeyer 60), Frings, Oezil (Tziolis 87), Diego, Almeida (Rosenberg 90), Pizarro

Mathew Burt, Goal.com