DFB Pokal First Round: Bayern Munich And Schalke Advance, Wolfsburg And Bayer Leverkusen Bow Out

The first round of the DFB Pokal concludes Monday when Bayern Munich travel to Eintracht Braunschweig.

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DFB Pokal Second Round Draw: Bayern Munich And Borussia Dortmund Draw 2.Bundesliga Opponents

The 2011-2012 DFB Pokal draw commenced on Saturday. Bayern Munich, Borussia Dortmund and Schalke 04 draw 2.Bundesliga opponents.

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Bayern Munich Vs. Eintracht Braunschweig, DFB Pokal First Round: Final Score, Thomas Müller Guides Bayern To 3-0 Win

It wasn't Eintracht Braunschweig's night at home in the first round of the DFB-Pokal, but at least they look like a team that can stay up in the Bundesliga.2. They put up a solid showing against German football's biggest side, but ultimately fell 3-0 to Bayern Munich, who created two penalties in the first half and killed off the game late with a third goal from open play.

Thomas Müller was the clear man of the match, and he continues to make a case for staying in the starting lineup even on the rare occasion that Franck Ribery and Arjen Robben are both healthy and on form. The German international created both of the first half penalties, scored by Mario Gomez and Bastian Schweinsteiger, then added a goal of his own to seal the victory for Bayern.

Eintracht Braunschweig has already started their Bundesliga.2 campaign and has maximum points from their first two matches. Bayern Munich kicks off their Bundesliga campaign this weekend against Borussia Mönchengladbach.

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Bayern Munich Vs. Eintracht Braunschweig, DFB Pokal First Round: Halftime, Bayern Lead 2-0

Eintracht Braunschweig have done well to hang with Bayern Munich at home in their DFB-Pokal First Round matchup, but a couple of bad fouls in the penalty area have gifted two penalty kicks to the visitors, both of which were converted by Bayern. They haven't been at their absolute best so far, but they've been good enough to draw two penalties and to keep Braunschweig off the board, and as a result they lead by a score of 2-0 at halftime.

Both penalties were drawn by Thomas Müller, who has been arguably Bayern's best attacking player so far. The first penalty was drawn in the 9th minute, converted by Mario Gomez, and the second was drawn in the 39th minute, converted by Bastian Schweinsteiger. Braunschweig have played a physical game and are defending well, but their two slip-ups have likely put the game beyond doubt. Thanks to Dynamo Dresden's win over Bayer Leverkusen we know it's not over until the final whistle blows, but it's hard to see Bayern blowing this one.

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DFB Pokal First Round: Monday Preview: Bayern Munich Face Eintracht Braunschweig

Monday concludes the first round of the 2011-2012 DFB Pokal with Bayern Munich traveling to Eintracht Braunschweig. After seeing Wolfsburg, Freiburg, Werder Bremen and Bayer Leverkusen get eliminated by lower division opponents, Bayern will be looking to avoid the same embarrassment.

Bayern will be taking all 19 fit first team players with them to Braunschweig. The three not making the trip are Arjen Robben, Franck Ribery and Breno. Robben is still recovering from an ankle sprain, but he will likely feature this weekend against Borussia Mönchengladbach in the first match of the new league season. Breno is back running after injuring his knee and will continue to rehab for another week. Ribery is expected to be out for at least another week after spraining his ankle and damaging some ligaments. He is expected to begin running next week.

With both Ribery and Robben out, manager Jupp Heynckes is expected to bring in David Alaba and Toni Kroos to replace them. Heynckes will continue to the 4-2-3-1 formation that Bayern has been using for the last few season. Alaba will move to the left in place of Ribery, Kroos will slide into the middle and Thomas Müller will move out wide right in place of Robben. Behind those three will sit Bastian Schweinsteiger and either Anatoliy Tymoshchuk or Luiz Gustavo.

After his spectacular campaign last season, Mario Gomez is a lock-starter barring injury at the lone forward position. Bayern finally have depth again at this position this season with the return of Ivica Olić from injury and the summer signing of Nils Petersen. 

In defense Heynckes is likely to go with Philipp Lahm at left back, Rafinha at right back and Jérôme Boateng and Holger Badstuber as the two centerbacks. The other alternative at centerback is the big Belgian Daniel Van Buyten.

Manuel Neuer will be the starting goalkeeper for Bayern. The expectations on Neuer are huge as a few of the club's "ultra groups" have come out vehemently against Neuer. He will need to come up big for the club this season.

Eintracht Braunschweig won promotion at the end of last season to the 2.Bundesliga. After two rounds this season they are on top of the table. They've sold all 24,000 seats in the Eintracht-Stadion and the atmosphere is expected to be electric. Braunschweig will be counting on forwards Dominick Kumbela and Dennis Kruppke to continually challenge the Bayern backline and capitalize on any scoring chances they do have.

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DFB Pokal First Round: Schalke 04 Advance With 11-1 Thrashing

Sunday's first round matches saw Greuther Fürth and Schalke 04 put up double digit goals on their way to advancing to the second round.

Sunday

FC Oberneuland Vs. FC Ingolstadt 04

Moritz Hartmann scored a goal in the 8th minute after being set up by Tobias Fink. They doubled their lead in the 19th minute when captain Stefan Leitl converted a penalty. Gökhan Aktas would bring the home side back into the match in the 33rd minute with a great finish. Oberneuland will feel hard done by when the referee missed a clear handball in the penalty area by Ingolstadt's Caiuby. Hartmann would grab another goal in the 70th minute and José-Alex Ikeng put the finishing touches on the match in the 87th minute giving the 2.Bundesliga club a solid 4-1 victory.

SpVgg Unterhaching Vs. SC Freiburg

In an effort not to become another Bundesliga club to be eliminated by a 3.Liga side, Freiburg came out firing and were rewarded in the 9th minute when Cedric Makiadi slotted the ball into the back of the net. Unterhaching was able to get their feet under them and leveled the match in the 17th minute on the foot of mdifielder Roland Sternisko. The remainder of the half was played evenly with neither side developin a full scoring chance. Shortly after halftime Freiburg defender Oliver Barth fouled Florian Niederlechner in the area. Mijo Tunjic stepped up and scored the penalty to give the hosts a lead. In the 74th minute Freiburg defender Stefan Reisinger cleaned up in front of goal on a corner kick and pulled the Bundesliga club even. The visitors appeared to be gaining the upperhand, but it all collapsed in the 87th minute when Unterhaching was awarded a penalty. Tunjic stepped up and calmly put the ball in the back of the net giving the 3.Liga side a 3-2 victory.

Karlsruher SC Vs. Alemannia Aachen

Kevin Kratz scored a penalty in the 7th minuet for Aachen after Dennis Kempe brought down Marco Stiepermann. Karlsruher defender Patrick Milchraum jumped on a loose ball in the Aachen penalty area and fired it into the back of the net to even the match up after 26 minutes. Both defenses went into lock down mode after this until the 83rd minute when Kempe made up for his earlier mistake by heading the home side ahead. Gaétan Krebs would lob the goalkeeper in stoppage time to seal the victory for Karlsruhe.

Eimsbütteler TV Vs. SpVgg Greuther Fürth

Fürth needed 15 minutes to warm up in the match against the club from the 6th division, but after that they were in top gear. Mergim Mavraj would get the scoring started in the 17th minute, and Sercan Sararer would add two more goals before the 25th minute had passed. In the second half the club put seven goals past Jonas Struckmann in the Eimsbütteler goal. Sebastian Tyrala and Sararer grabbed two more goals in the second half. Christopher Nöthe, Bernd Nehrig and Christian Rahn also scored int he second half. The 10-0 result is massive for the 2.Bundesliga club, and they'll be hoping they can bring these scoring boots to their season.

Anker Wismar Vs. Hannover 96

Hannover made sure that they wouldn't be knocked out of the cup for the third year in a row by an amateur club by knocking in four goals before halftime thanks to braces from Mohammed Abdellaoue and Lars Stindl. The finished the match off with ease in the second half on the back of a brace from Moritz Stoppelkamp. The 6-0 victory gives the Bundesliga club a good showing before the season begins.

ZFC Meuselwitz Vs. Hertha BSC

Hertha never looked troubled against the Regionalliga side cruising to a comfortable 4-0 victory. Adrián Ramos scored a first half brace and Andreas Ottl and Patrick Ebert finishing the scoring in the second half. The 4-0 scoreline does not do justice for the impressive performance from Hertha as they were let down by some poor finishing.

Germania Windeck Vs. 1899 Hoffenheim

Hoffenheim seemed to be content with all of the possession in the first half without truly pressuring the Germania goal. The hosts took the lead on their first shot on goal when Florian Buchholz headed the ball just inside the near post. Hoffenheim leveled the match just after halftime thanks to a penalty from Sejad Salihovic. Hoffenheim forward Prince Tagoe would see his sitter cleared off the line just before the final whistle to send the match into extra time. Hoffenheim took it to Germania in the extra period as their opponents were visibly growing more tired. Fabian Johnson scored a nice goal to put the Bundesliga club up 2-1, and Ryan Babel made it 3-1 curling in a free kick with 6 minutes left.

FC Teningen Vs. FC Schalke 04

The holders eased to a dominating 11-1 victory over seventh division Teningen. Klaas Jan-Huntelaar got  the scoring started in the 3rd minute, and defender Kyriakos Papadopoulos doubled the lead just minutes later. Raul made it 3-0 in the 12th minute before the home fans had something to cheer about. Florian Kirstein got on the end of a corner kick and headed it past Lars Unnerstall in the Schalke goal making it 3-1. Huntelaar made the lead 3 once again just two minutes later. Huntelaar would grab two more goals as would Lewis Holtby and Mario Gavranovic and Raul added another bringing the total to 11.

Hessen Kassel Vs. Fortuna Düsseldorf

Dusseldorf dispatched of Regionalliga side Hessen Kassel 3-0 with no problems. The first goal came in the 24th minute thanks to Thomas Bröker finishing a Sascha Rösler corner with a powerful header. Rösler doubled the lead in the 79th minute finishing into the corner of the net. Oliver Fink made the score 3-0 following up a free kick to put the match away.

SVN Zweibrücken Vs. 1. FSV Mainz 05

The match started brightly for Mainz as Zoltan Stieber knocked the ball off the post in the 6th minute, but their performance for the majority of the match was very uninspiring. With the score still at 0-0, Mainz saw fullback Radoslav Zabavnik given his second yellow card of the match and sent to the stands. Mainz finally began to attack with purpose and in the 95th minute Petar Sliskovic finished off a pass from Elkin Soto to finally put a goal on the board. Controversey reigned at the end of the first period of extra time when Zweibrücken were denied a penalty when Malik Fathi handled the ball in the area. They then saw a goal from Jochen Ellermann called back for offside. Mainz appeared to win the match in the 115th minute when Sami Allagui doubled the lead, but Stefan Maul came right down on the kickoff and scored to bring Zweibrücken right back into the match. In the last attack of the game, Maul would see his shot go just north of the crossbar, and Mainz would win 2-1.

SC Wiedenbrück 2000 Vs. 1. FC Köln

The visitors were on the attack early and often thanks to Lukas Podolski. He saw a shot saved in the 23rd minute but the ball went off Milivoje Novakovic and into the net. Just before halftime Podolski laid the ball off for Novakovic and the lead was 2-0. Köln would put the match away in the 78th minute when Mato Jajalo ran onto a long ball and slipped it past the goalkeeper into the net giving the Bundesliga side a 3-0 victory.

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DFB Pokal First round: Sunday Preview: The Holders Schalke 04 Begin Defense

The first round of the 2011-2012 DFB Pokal continues on Sunday. Seven matches will feature Bundesliga sides including defending champions Schalke 04 who kick off against amateur side FC Teningren.

Sunday

FC Oberneuland Vs. FC Ingolstadt 04

The amateur side from Bremen host 2.Bundesliga club looking to get some sort of offense going that can assist them in their season campaign. Ingolstadt forward Caiiuby, on loan from Wolfsburg, definitely needs to find his scoring boots soon if Ingolstadt is looking to have any chance of progressing deep into this tournament.

SpVgg Unterhaching Vs. SC Freiburg

Senegalese forward Papiss Cissé is the man to watch in this match for SC Freiburg. Last season he was excellent and finished second behind Mario Gomez for the golden boot in the Bundesliga.

Karlsruher SC Vs. Alemannia Aachen

This match features two clubs from the 2.Bundesliga. The match will likely hinge on which team can capitalize on the other team's mistakes.

Eimsbütteler TV Vs. SpVgg Greuther Fürth

Greuther Fürth is always on the border of getting promotion to the first division and it never seems to come. Getting an amateur side in the cup can be a good way to kick start your season. Forward Christopher Nöthe could be in for a big night for the visitors.

Anker Wismar Vs. Hannover 96

Hannover will be playing in Europe for the first time ever this season. They'll be looking for a good performance here against Wismar hoping to translate that into a good run of form in the Bundesliga and the Europa League.

ZFC Meuselwitz Vs. Hertha BSC

Hertha are finally back in the big time of the first division and drew amateur side ZFC Meuselwitz. Their big signings this summer were the free transfer of midfielder Andreas Ottl and goalkeeper Thomas Kraft. Both will be instrumental this season for Berlin.

Germania Windeck Vs. 1899 Hoffenheim

Hoffenheim announced this week that Andreas Beck would be remaining at the club. They will be without Vedad Ibišević as he picked up a knock midweek and will be unable to play against the amateur side from Windeck. Hoffenheim will be looking for some production out of Ryan Babel.

FC Teningen Vs. FC Schalke 04

The holders kick off against amateur side FC Teningen. They'll be coming in off of last week's high of beating archrival Borussia Dortmund in the DFB Supercup last weekend on penalties. It will be interesting to see what two holding/defensive midfielders that Ralf Rangnick chooses for this match. Against Dortmund he went with Lewis Holtby and Alexander Baumjohann. There has been talk that we might see Jermaine Jones make his return to the Schalke squad in this match. The real place to keep an eye on is the forward positions. Rangnick has favored the combination of Raul and Klaas Jan Huntelaar since he took over last year. There have been a lot of rumblings over the last few weeks that Raul could be headed back to Spain and particularly to Malaga. We'll have to wait and see.

Hessen Kassel Vs. Fortuna Düsseldorf

Düsseldorf will be counting on Andreas Lambertz to provide the spark in midfield as they look to advance to the second round of the Pokal against Hessen Kassel.

SVN Zweibrücken Vs. 1. FSV Mainz 05

Mainz purchased Nigerian forward Anthony Ujah from Lillestrøm this summer in a shrewd bit of business. They'll be counting on goals from him and returning forward Sami Allagui to carry the club through the season where they'll be playing in the Europa League.

SC Wiedenbrück 2000 Vs. 1. FC Köln

Köln will be playing their first match in some time without Lukas Podolski leading the club out as captain. New manager Ståle Solbakken has named his captain as Pedro Geromel. This is a situation to keep an eye on for this season. Podolski has given his all for "his club" that he joined in 1995 at the age of 10. With the armband basically being stripped from him, what do we expect from Podolski moving forward?

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DFB Pokal First Round: Dynamo Dresden Come Back From Three Down, Beat Bayer Leverkusen 4-3

Bayer Leverkusen collapsed on Saturday giving up four straight goals to Dynamo Dresden to lose 4-3. They weren't the only Bundesliga club to fall victim to a lower division club on a busy Saturday in the DFB Pokal.

Saturday

BFC Dynamo Vs. Kaiserslautern

FCK traveled to the home of the 10 time East German champions who are now languishing in the fifth division. Ivo Ilicevic got things started for Kaiserslautern in the 17th minute finishing off some good play by new summer signings Itay Shechter and Olcay Şahan. Captain Christian Tiffert finished a cross from Leon Jessen to give the side a 2-0 lead. Just after halftime, Thanos Petsos finished a cross from Tiffert to give the side a 3-0 victory.

Hallescher Vs. Eintracht Frankfurt

An inspired performance from the home side was finally broken when Theofanis Gekas put a penalty into the back of the net to give Frankfurt the 1-0 lead in the 85th minute. Just minutes later, Gekas got onto the end of a goal kick and was able to double the lead and ensure the victory.

Babelsberg Vs. Duisburg

The match could not have gotten off to a more terrible start for newly promoted 3.Liga side, when an own goal by Dominik Stroh-Engel gave Duisburg an early lead. The added another at the half hour mark when Valeri Domovchiyski found the back of the net. Duisburg played enough to keep Babelsberg honest for the remaining 60 minutes on their way to the second round.

Heidenheim Vs. Werder Bremen

Bremen's new defender Sokratis Papastathopoulos broke up a Heidenheim attack and launched a quick counter that saw Aaron Hunt feed the ball to the feet of Markus Rosenberg to give the Bundesliga side a 1-0 lead in the 33rd minute. Five minutes after halftime, Marko Marin saw his shot blocked by the arm of Florian Tausendpfund. Marin's weak penalty was saved by Heidenheim goalkeeper Frank Lehmann. Just six minutes later Christian Sauter curled a free kick into Bremen goal to bring the sides level. Just minutes later the hosts got the winner through Marc Schnatterer knocking the Bundesliga side out of the competition. 

Dynamo Dresden Vs. Bayer Leverkusen

Eren Derdiyok put his header into the Dresden net after just 6 minutes to give Leverkusen an early 1-0 lead. Sidney Sam lobbed the ball over Dresden keeper Dennis Eilhoff just 5 minutes later to give the visitors a 2-0 lead. Just four minutes into the second half, Andre Schürrle seemingly ended the match with a curler in off the post. The goal was his competitive goal first for Leverkusen since making the move this summer from Mainz. Dresden found a small bit of hope in the 67th minute when Sebastian Schuppan headed Cristian Fiel's free kick past Leverkusen goalkeeper David Yelldell. Two minutes later, Dresden struck again with Robert Koch heading a cross from Filip Trojan past Yellell. The fans blew the roof off of the arena when Robert Koch struck again in the 85th minute sliding and knocking the ball into the Leverkusen net past a diving Yelldell. In extra time the home side defended resiliently, and struck just three minutes before penalties when Alexander Schnetzler chipped an on-rushing Yelldell to complete a remarkable come back and win for Dynamo Dresden.

Eintracht Trier Vs. St. Pauli

The Regionalliga side scored in the 15th minute on the back of Ahmet Kulabas. St. Pauli continued to attack the entire match and were finally rewarded in the 88th minute on the boot of Mahir Saglik. The joy for St. Pauli was short lived, because Eintracht Trier marched right down the field and won the match with Martin Hauswald bagging the winner.

Arminia Bielefeld Vs. Nürnberg

Bielefeld kicked off with a fantastic start bagging a goal in the 14th minute. From that point forward Nürnberg grabbed control of the match and never looked back. Markus Feulner scored a hat trick with goals in the 25th, 35th and 38th minute. Robert Mak and Tomas Pekhart put the finishing touches on a 5-1 victory with second half goals.

Rot Weiss Ahlen Vs. Paderborn

Paderborn brought the sword to Rot Weiss early and often. The clock struck 30 minutes and Paderborn already was up 4 goals to 0. The goals would pour in for Paderborn until the very end of the game. When the referee finally blew his whistle, the scoreboard showed 10-0. Matthew Taylor scored a hat trick against his old club, while Enis Alushi and Nick Proschwitz added two goals a piece. The final two goals came from Mehmet Kara and Alban Meha.

Oldenburg Vs. Hamburg

Hamburg defender Heiko Westermann went from hero to goat during the first half bagging a goal in the 25th minute and then seeing his failed clearance put in the back of the Hamburg goal by Sebastian Ferrulli in the 34th minute. It wasn't until the 72nd minute when Mladen Petric scored the winner for Hamburg.

Holstein Kiel Vs. Energie Cottbus

Regionalliga side Holstein Kiel took the match to the 2.Bundesliga side from the first whistle. Fiete Sykora and Rafael Kazior had Kiel up 2-0 after just 32 minutes. Cottbus came out strong in the second half and looked to get a goal to be right back in the match, but a swift counterattack in the 58th minute saw Patrick Hermann put the ball in the back of the Cottbus net and sealing the victory for the fourth division club.

Sandhausen vs. Borussia Dortmund

It took only ten minutes for Dortmund to get on the score sheet when Shinji Kagawa played Robert Lewandowski through the back line and the Polish international put it into the far corner of the net. Kagawa and Ilkay Gündogan put together some nice passes in the 55th minute, and Kagawa finished making the score 2-0. With just stoppage time remaining, Dortmund would grab another goal as Lewandowski scored to make it 3-0.

Kickers Emden Vs. FSV Frankfurt

Frankfurt took on the fifth division club and finally broke the scoring open in the 37th minute thanks to Zafer Yelen. However just before halftime Emden was awarded a penalty and it was easily converted by Steven Janßen. The match would go into extra time where Frankfurt launched an offensive explosion putting four goals in the back of the net on braces from Babacar Gueye and Karim Benyamina to win 5-1.

Hansa Rostock Vs. Bochum

Bochum and Hansa Rostock played to a 2-2 draw in regulation with goals from Mirkan Aydin and Daniel Ginczek for Bochum and Tobias Jänicke and Pavel Kostál for Rostock. Bochum made all five of their penalties while Rostock defender Michael Wiemann saw his penalty saved.

Rot-Weiß Oberhausen vs. Augsburg

Augsburg needed extra time to ensure they wouldn't join fellow first division clubs Bayer Leverkusen and Werder Bremen to fall on Saturday. Oberhausen got off to a great start thanks to Christopher Kullmann in the 23rd minute, but Augsburg tagged them right back through Paul Verhaegh just seven minutes later. It took until the 119th minute for either side to find the back of the net again when Jonas De Roeck headed home the winner.

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2011-2012 DFB Pokal First Round: Saturday Preview

After an exciting first day of matches, including fourth division Red Bull Leipzig upsetting Wolfsburg, Saturday sees fourteen matches including last season's champions Borussia Dortmund.

Saturday

BFC Dynamo Vs. Kaiserslautern

Kaiserslautern finished an outstanding 7th in the Bundesliga last season. Their opponents BFC Dynamo are playing in the fifth division of German soccer. Christian Tiffert was excellent for Kaiserslautern last season out of the midfield, and lead the league in assists. Keep an eye on him.

Hallescher Vs. Eintracht Frankfurt

Alexander Meier will be the difference maker for Frankfurt out of the midfield against fourth division Hallescher. After a stellar first half last season in the Bundesliga, Frankfurt's second half was so awful that they were relegated to the 2.Bundesliga. They should be too good for Hallescher, but it will depend on how well Thomas Kesler organizes his back line.

Heidenheim Vs. Werder Bremen

Bremen will be counting on the attacking force that Marko Marin, Mehmet Ekici and Marko Arnautovic to put the sword to the 3.Liga side from Heidenheim.

Dynamo Dresden Vs. Bayer Leverkusen

Leverkusen will be putting in American goalkeeper David Yelldell in for the injured Rene Adler. Even with a few weeks of working with Yelldell, it will be interesting to see how the backline organizes under his watch. The two players to keep an eye on for Leverkusen will be midfielder Lars Bender and forward André Schürrle. Dresden earned promotion to the 2.Bundesliga after defeating Osnabrück in the promotion playoff.

Eintracht Trier Vs. St. Pauli

The pirates of St. Pauli are looking to rebound after their relegation to the 2.Bundesliga last season. There's no better way than getting a fourth division side in the cup. 

Arminia Bielefeld Vs. Nürnberg

The two biggest Fahrstuhlmannschaften, or yo-yo clubs, in Germany are battling for a spot in the second round. I expect Nürnberg to go through with a simple victory. 

Rot Weiss Ahlen Vs. Paderborn

Rot Weiss Ahlen were relegated from the 3.Liga last season and sold their leading scorer, American Matthew Taylor, to Paderborn in the summer. Paderborn will be looking for a solid performance out of their midfield in order to control the match against the chaotic Regionalliga side.

Oldenburg Vs. Hamburg

Even with seeing Ruud van Nistelrooy leaving the club in the summer for Malaga, Hamburg still has a frightening attack with Paolo Guerrero, Mladen Petric and Eljero Elia. Frank Arnesen has come to the club and brought in Chelsea defenders Michael Mancienne and Jeffrey Bruma in hopes to strengthen a weak backline.

Holstein Kiel Vs. Energie Cottbus

In a battle between a 3.Liga side and a 2.Bundesliga side, the conventional wisdom is that the 2.Bundesliga side has the advantage. Will Cottbus have the advantage over Kiel? More than likely they will. Expect the experience of Cottbus to come through.

Sandhausen vs. Borussia Dortmund

The champions should make easy work of the third division side. After last week's disappointment against Schalke in the Supercup, Dortmund will be out for blood. Robert Lewandowski will likely get the start up top again with Lukas Barrios out with his thigh injury suffered at the Copa America. 

Kickers Emden Vs. FSV Frankfurt

The second club of Frankfurt will look for a quick and easy victory over the fifth division club from the border with the Netherlands

Hansa Rostock Vs. Bochum

Rostock is coming off of a successful campaign in the 3.Liga that saw them promoted back to the 2.Bundesliga. Until last season, they had been in a free fall being relegated from the Bundesliga to 2.Bundesliga to 3.Liga in a three year period. Bochum lost the promotion playoff against Borussia Monchengladbach last season, but they are favorites again to win that promotion this year. Hansa will be hoping that some magic falls on the foot of their playmaker Björn Ziegenbein in order to advance to the next round.

Rot-Weiß Oberhausen vs. Augsburg

These two sides saw opposite fortunes at the end of last season. Augsburg won promotion to the Bundesliga while Oberhausen was relegated to the 3.Liga. Is a cup run a distraction that Augsburg needs as they look to embark on their first ever season in the first division? I'm sure the supporters won't complain. 

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DFB Pokal First Round: Wolfsburg Eliminated By Fourth Division RB Leipzig

The first day of the 2011-2011 DFB Pokal has come to an end with some spectacular results. 

Friday

Rot-Weiß Essen Vs. Union Berlin

The first match of the tournament to go to penalties resulted in a win for the 3.Liga side Rot-Weiß Essen. Berlin were unable to get going on the offensive end until the second half when they were already down 1-0. Essen defended deep, and well, and capitalized again in the 70th minute when Berlin goalkeeper Jan Glinker fumbled a free kick and Essen substitute Benedikt Koep put the loose ball in the net giving the home side a 2-0 lead. It appeared that all hope was lost for Berlin, but a fantastic individual effort from Patrick Zoundi brought life into the visitors game. Berlin continued to attack and Simone Terodde snagged the equalizer in stoppage time to send the match into extra time. No goals came in extra time, and Essen goalkeeper Dennis Lamczyk was the hero saving two penalties.

RB Leipzig Vs. Wolfsburg

The fourth division club from Leipzig hosted Wolfsburg in front of a record crowd of 31,212. Red Bull forward Daniel Frahn opened the game with a goal in the 6th and 17th minutes putting the Wolves on their back heels early in the contest. Two of Felix Magath's summer signings, Srdan Lakic and Hasan Salihamdzic, opened their Wolfsburg goal scoring accounts to make things even in the 27th minute. It appeared that the Bundesliga side were going to roll to victory, but moments before halftime Frahn struck again. The forward headed in a cross from Rockenbach da Silva to put Leipzig on top. Wolfsburg were on the attack for the entire second half but were unable to put another goal past Red Bull goalkeeper Pascal Borel. The upset for Leipzig was monumental and will see them on to the second round.

FC Saarbrücken Vs. Erzgebirge Aue

It took extra time, but Erzgebirge Aue were able to put away FC Saarbrücken in extra time. A penalty by Thomas Paulus put the visitors on top in the 35th minute. The hosts continued to work hard in the midfield and were finally rewarded in the second half when Marc Lerandy was able to squeeze a ball over the goal line in the 70th minute. In extra time, it appeared as though Saarbrücken was going to take the lead but Lerandy saw his header clang off of the crossbar. Saarbrücken failed to clear their box on the other end and Jan Hochscheidt would bang the ball into the back of the net to put Aue on top 2-1. With just a few minutes remaining, Mike Könnecke put another one in the Saarbrücken net to seal the victory.

Jahn Regensburg Vs. Borussia Mönchengladbach

Borussia Mönchengladbach defeated Jahn Regensburg with ease as they won 3-1. The scoring was started when a Marco Reus cross was headed in by Martin Stanzl. Reus made it 2-0 in the 22nd minute when he cut through the Regensburg defense with some fancy footwork before putting the ball into the net. Tobias Schweinsteiger pulled one back for the home side on a penalty. The match remained at 2-1 until midway through the second half when Igor de Camargo scored to make the score 3-1 and clinch the victory for the Foals.

SV Wehen Wiesbaden Vs. Stuttgart

Stuttgart kicked off to a perfect start snagging a goal in the 6th minute. Centerback Ermin Bicakcic saw a deflected ball fall to his feet in the Wiesbaden penalty box and was able to score. Zlatko Janjic equalized for Wiesbaden later in the first half on a penalty. Just after halftime Zdravko Kuzmanovic was able to deflect a Tamas Hajnal free kick into the goal to give Stuttgart a 2-1 lead that they would not relinquish. 

Osnabrück Vs. 1860 Munich

1860 battled back twice two overcome deficits and still needed extra time to defeat 3.Liga side Osnabrück. The hosts 18 year old forward Gerrit Wegkamp scored with just seconds gone to start the match. Benjamin Lauth pulled Munich level after just 10 minutes on a penalty after Kevin Volland was fouled in the area by Jan Mauersberger. He quickly made up for that mistake and put the Osnabrück back on top later in the first half. Just after the half Kevin Volland pulled 1860 even once again. The match would go into extra time where Lauth would bag the winner for Munich.

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2011-2012 DFB Pokal First Round: Friday Preview

The first round in the 2011-2012 DFB Pokal begins this weekend. The first round of the cup is designed for upsets. The 18 Bundesliga clubs are matched up against, at best, a mid-table 2.Bundesliga club. For a full review of the draw and how it's structured, you'll want to check here.

The tournament kicks off Friday afternoon, continuing Saturday and Sunday before Bayern Munich's match against Eintracht Braunschweig on Monday.

Friday

Rot-Weiß Essen Vs. Union Berlin

The Regionalliga side (fourth division) will be hosting the second division side from Berlin. Union have struggled in their first two matches two start their 2.Bundesliga campaign, and I don't think it's completely out of the picture to see the lower division club spring the upset.

RB Leipzig Vs. Wolfsburg

After their disastrous season last year which nearly saw them relegated, expect Wolfsburg to come out and make an early statement for their intentions on this upcoming season against the fourth division side from Leipzig. Felix Magath will have his team ready to run all day, and they should make light work of their opponents. Oh yes, in case you didn't know, the "RB" in "RB Leipzig" stands for Red Bull. Yeah, they own a German club too.

FC Saarbrücken Vs. Erzgebirge Aue

In the least glamorous tie of the day, newly-promoted-to-the-3.Liga side Saarbrücken hosts second division Erzgebirge Aue.

Jahn Regensburg Vs. Borussia Mönchengladbach

'Gladbach scraped through their promotion playoff scare by the tiny hair on their chinny chin chin. So far this summer they've been able to hold on to Brazilian defender Dante which is remarkable in and of itself. They'll take on solid 3.Liga mid-table club Jahn Regensburg in what should be quite the interesting match. Of note: Bayern Munich midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger's older brother Tobias Schweinsteiger plays for Jahn Regensburg.

SV Wehen Wiesbaden Vs. Stuttgart

Stuttgart struggled in the Bundesliga last season and will be looking to immediately turn that around this season. Wehen Wiesbaden missed out on the 3.Liga's promotion playoff spot by only one point last season. This year they'll be pushing hard for one of the two automatic promotion places. A rejuvenated Stuttgart side should come out on top in this one.

Osnabrück Vs. 1860 Munich

After finally appearing to have squared away the majority of their off the field problems with the new financial investment, this season is massive for 1860 to begin their move back to the Bundesliga. They finished mid-table in the 2.Bundesliga last season, and their supporters would love a nice cup run to get that "winning spirit" back among the club. After losing the relegation playoff last year down to the 3.Liga, Osnabrück will be hoping to make the jump right back to the 2.Bundesliga. Is the cup a distraction they want/need?

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