After the long winter break, the Bundesliga is finally back in action. Champions Bayern Munich started the second half of the season with a victory and another step towards a record fourth straight Bundesliga title.
Pep Guardiola’s Bavarians enjoyed a 2-1 victory at Hamburg.
Robert Lewandowski got Bayern off the mark from the penalty spot 10 minutes before half-time.
Aaron Hunt’s free kick caused chaos in box and led to Xabi Alonso scoring an own goal to level for the hosts soon after the restart but Lewandowski was on hand again to fire home his 17th goal of the season and secure his side all three points.
Bayern’s win on Friday had put them 11 points clear at the top of the table, but the following day that was reduced back to eight when closest rivals Borussia Dortmund beat Borussia Monchengladbach to keep the champions in sight.
Marco Reus, Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Ilkay Gundogan all scored to hand their side a 3-1 victory.
As well as keeping the statues quo between themselves and Bayern – more importantly perhaps is the fact they stretched their lead to eight points over third placed Hertha Berlin who drew with Augsburg.
Dortmund next player promoted Ingolstadt on Saturday while the following day Bayern take on Hoffenheim.
Up and down
Three clubs make the lineup for this week’s up and down segment. One that continues to shine, another that continues to disappoint and a third that has started to wobble following a good run of results.
Barcelona are on the up after they beat Malaga to regain the La Liga lead. Barca have now gone 24 matches without defeat in all competitions.
It equals the unbeaten run of Franck Rijkaard’s Barca in 2005/2006.
Their last defeat came against Sevilla on 3 October.
On the down are Manchester United who were booed off at Old Trafford after losing to Southampton and a Charlie Austin late goal.
It was United’s 6th league defeat of the season and left them on 37 points – the club’s lowest-ever Premier League tally after 23 games.
Slipping down the Premier League table are Arsenal who lost at home to Chelsea in their last fixture.
Their third straight game without a win has cost the Gunners top spot in the league – they are now third three points behind surprise leaders Leicester and level on points with second-place Man City.
Road to Euro
Denmark should not have participated in Euro 92. The Danes actually failed to qualify, but they took the place of Yugoslavia, who were disqualified as a result of the breakout of war in the country.
A dream participation for Denmark turned out to be a nightmare for the rest.
The ninth edition of the European Football Championship was held in Sweden, in June 1992.
After failing to qualify, Denmark were invited to replace Yugoslavia at the last minute. Møller Nielsen’s squad beat defending champions the Netherlands on penalties in the semis, en route to the final in Gothenburg. With Jelsen and Vilfort’s goals, Denmark downed Germany to claim the title.
We might be wrong
We’ve now arrived at our predictions page. We’ve selected three games from across Europe. If you don’t agree with our forecast, send us yours using the social networks and #TheCornerScores.
Barcelona 1-1 Atletico de Madrid
AC Milan 0-1 Inter
Saint-Etienne 0-2 Paris Saint-Germain
We end this episode with the images of an elderly Greek women who decides to take a short cut across a field on her way home – the only problem is that the field is a football field and was being used at the time. Enjoy this slow paced pitch invasion and join us again on The Corner next Monday!
(See video above for bloopers)