Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Heynckes’ tactics are working & five things we learned from Bayern Munich’s 5-0 thrashing of Hamburg

Bayern Munich won their third consecutive match on Saturday, in what was quite easily their most impressive result of the season thus far. The German record champions hammered Hamburg by a 5-0 margin, a result that saw them break into the upper echelons of the Bundesliga table.

The high score had a very Louis Van Gaal look about it, but the actual play itself was different from that which was seen under the Dutch coach. New trainer Jupp Heynckes has brought not only new personnel, but a new system; the players themselves have evolved, making Bayern an altogether different team now than they were in the spring.

Clark Whitney takes a look at the lessons Bayern can take from their outstanding performance against Hamburg.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Who is the next Lee Young-Pyo? - Five Korean defenders ready for Europe

Korean defensive legend Lee Young-Pyo will be remembered as the player who carved the route from the K-League to Europe after he left his homeland for PSV Eindhoven in 2003. More recently that pathway has become a well-trodden one, with a number of top European clubs increasingly turning to east Asia for talent.

Japan's J-League has been the source of a great deal of talent. However, it's been the K-League which has dominated the AFC Champions League in recent times, with Pohang and Seongnam winning the past two titles, suggesting there's a long list of untapped resources in Korea.

Ben Somerford introduces five defensive prospects who can follow in Lee Young-Pyo's footsteps and succeed in Europe.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Ozil, Khedira, Dzeko, now Sahin & Vidal: How the Bundesliga stars & their former clubs fared after they left

Each year, the Bundesliga sees at least a couple of stars plucked away by foreign teams, and the summer of 2011 has been no exception. Having received attractive offers from abroad, two of the German top flight’s finest midfielders, Nuri Sahin and Arturo Vidal, have completed their transfers to Real Madrid and Juventus respectively.

Much is expected of the duo as they take the next step in their respective careers, but back in Germany the more pressing question is how their former teams will manage.

Below, Clark Whitney takes a look at the Bundesliga’s biggest exports over the last year, rating their performances abroad and focusing on how their former clubs fared.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Possible breakout stars of the new Bundesliga season 2011/12

Last year, and with little warning, a large crop of young talents emerged in the Bundesliga. Some, like Mario Gotze and Mats Hummels, were previously well known but expected to take another year or two before establishing themselves as stars. Others, like Andre Schurrle and Julian Draxler, were largely unknown quantities before they made massive strides in their development.

The emergence of young stars in 2010-11 was no anomaly: especially over the last decade, Germany's youth academies have been hard at work churning out talents, and given its success in the form of qualified national players, this is not likely to cease anytime soon.

Over the course of the coming season, many of yesteryear's starlets are expected to continue their development. However, they are not the only youngsters to watch, and represent only a portion of Germany's youth pool. Below, Clark Whitney takes a look at some of the Bundesliga's finest burgeoning talents, ahead of what could be a breakthrough season for each.



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