Sunday, October 26, 2008

Hannover 96 play to draw against Werder Bremen

The Green Whites trip to Hannover ended in disappointment as they stumbled to a 1-1 draw. Thomas Schaaf was significantly handicapped with a number of absences with which the loss of Per Mertesacker, Diego and Claudio Pizarro had a major impact. The outcome will be particularly frustrating as Bremen was able to generally able to control play but fell far short in creating scoring opportunities and final touches.

Hannover came out inspired as a came close as a Szabolcs Huszt cross into the box was headed by Mikael Forssell to the corner but 'keeper Christian Vander made a good save. However by the ninth minute die Roten had the 1-0 lead as the Hungarian international Huszti played set-up man again, this time re-directing a corner to Christian Schulz who headed it on from in-close. That goal seemed to provide a general match wake-up call as things became a bit more heated. Fouls were a bit harsher and all of a sudden this started to look and feel like a real derby.

The Green Whites started to show some inspiration and came close with Naldo coming close on two separate occasions five minutes later but it was to no avail. Just past the half-hour mark Hugo Almeida provided some inspiration, crossing to Mesut Özil near the spot but his drive was woefully off target. However Almeida continues to be the offensive leader and four minutes before break the Portuguese international scores for the right side of the box to the opposite corner with his left foot. Only two minutes later he nearly gives Bremen the lead with a header from in the box but it falls wide. A flurry of activity begins on the Hannover attack with Huszti once again stirring things ups but the match goes to the break even.

After the break the first fifteen minutes show little final product from either side but tempers are continuing to flare up. However with thirty minutes to go a whirlwind of attacking prowess commences with die Roten 'keeper Florian Fromlowitz robbing Mesut Özil from close range. Not to be out done in this battle of back-up 'keepers Christian Vander stands tall and denies Sergio Pinto in the ensuing attack. With twenty minutes remaining the clubs trades scoring chances but finishing is lacking. Bremen's best opportunity falls into the hands of Özil who pushes a drive from the left side of the box wide. As the match is winding down, it is all Hannover, with a sea of red in the Bremen end. Bremen appear satisfied with a point and in-the-end that is where the match ends.

The result is a tough decision for Green White supporters to take although on a positive side Christian Vander proved himself to be very sturdy and if it wasn't for him, Hannover would have taken the three points. It will be nice to move on from October where we were winless with two draws but before we do we face Bayer Leverkusen at the Weserstadion.