The European Champions League finals game at Wembley Stadium in London, England was the first time it has been an all-German competition. Bayern Munich finally got over the hump with a 2-1 win on Saturday against Borussia Dortmund becoming the 2012-2013 champions of Europe. The crowd was electrifying and both German teams did not disappoint, maintaining a dazzling display of up and down field play.
The first half ended in a 0-0 draw, but it was clear that Dortmund had the advantage, controlling the ball and shots on goal. The second half added to the excitement as Bayern finally broke through with Mario Mandzukic scoring the first goal in the 60th minute of play. This was followed by a goal by Borrusia Dortmund in the 67th minute, a penalty conversion by Ilkay Gundogan. The penalty was called when Bayern defender Dante kicked Marco Reus in the stomach.
The game looked like it was going to go into extra time with both teams putting the pressure on each other, but Dutchman Arjen Robben broke through the Dortmund back line with a back heel kick by the Frenchman Franck Ribery giving Munich the win 2-1 in the 89th minute.
This more than compensated for last year’s final defeat to English club Chelsea. Robben had not scored in 24 shots in three champions league finals before his goal against Dortmund. Munich now looks for the tremble after winning the Bundesliga and the Champions League; they now have a chance next Saturday to win the German Cup, and if they win, they will go on to play VfB Stuttgart. The 68-year-old manager Jupp Heynckes will be only the fourth manager to win the European Cup as the head of two different teams, as he won as the coach of Real Madrid in 1998.
In Scotland, the Celtic won their 36th Scottish Cup defeating Hibernian 3-0 at Hampden Park. Celtic’s Gary Hooper scored two goals and Joe Ledley scored another goal, pushing them ahead of the Edinburgh side. The loss for Hibernian leaves them again without winning the Scottish Cup since 1902. The win ended a good season for Celtic, winning the league and doing well in the Champions League.
In Italy, Lazio defeated AS Roma 1-0 to win the Italian Cup for their sixth time.
David Beckham’s 20-year playing career ended on Sunday, as he did not play in Paris St Germain’s last game at Lorient. The 38-year-old was not named on the squad on Sunday in PSG’s last game of the season, which they won 3-1 against Lorient. He did lead them to their first title in 19 years, winning the French Ligue 1.
Rafa Benitez finished his run as the manager of Chelsea football club in Yankee Stadium on Saturday night. Chelsea played the second of two exhibition matches against Manchester City where they lost 5-3. Ending a short run at Chelsea where he came in to the job in November to replace Roberto Di Matteo, he now is set to go on to manage Napoli in Italy. During his time as Chelsea manager he led his team to win the Europa League. However, he was never trusted by the Chelsea faithful who remembered him from his time at Liverpool from 2004 – 2010.
Outgoing Real Madrid coach Jose Mourinho is expected to return to Chelsea for a second stint, the ninth managerial change under owner Roman Abramovich. Malaga Coach Manuel Pellegrini is the probable successor to Roberto Mancini who was fired May 13, exactly a year after leading City to its first league title since 1968, leaving assistant Brian Kidd in charge during the US tour.
The US Tour started in Saint Louis on Wednesday night and wrapped up in New York City at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx. Over 39-thousand fans jammed the stadium to watch this exhibition match which was without the physical tough play that would accompany a in season English Premiership match.
In Major League Soccer, the Houston Dynamo drew 1-1 to Sporting Kansas City at Sporting Park on Sunday. The game had more than 20,000 audience members, a sold-out crowd. This was the second time in two weeks that the two teams have met. Houston’s Brad Davis scored the first goal of the match and his third goal of the year, during extra time in the end of the first half. Kansas City Kei Kamara evened the score in the 68th minute after coming in as as substitute in the 52nd minute. It was the 46th goal in their careers for both Davis and Kamara.
The Dynamo are now 6-4-3 with 21 points and remain in fourth place in the Eastern Conference, a point behind Sporting Kansas City (6-4-4 22 points). The New York Red Bulls are still in first with 25 points, followed by the Montreal Impact with 23 points. The Dynamo on Wednesday advanced to the fourth round of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open with a 2-0 win over F.C. Tucson on Wednesday night. Houston’s Alex Dixon and Giles Barnes scored the goals of the night at the BBVA Compass Stadium. Houston will meet Dallas F.C. in the next round of the competition. Houston plays the Columbus Crew this Saturday at Crew Stadium in Columbus Ohio. Saturday’s game will begin at 6:30 p.m. CT and will be broadcasted live on CSN Plus and Mega TV (Spanish). It can be heard on Yahoo Sports Radio 1560 AM and La Ranchera 850 AM (Spanish).
In other news, Houston defender Corey Ashe withdrew from the US. national team due to a groin injury. He was set to play for the US against Belgium.
Internationally, the United States lost to Belgium on Wednesday 4-2 in Cleveland Ohio at First Energy Stadium. Geoff Cameron and Clint Dempsey scored for the US team and now look to play Germany this Sunday night at RFK Stadium in Washington D.C. Germany started their international play with a 4-2 win over Ecuador on Wednesday.
Ireland played England to a 1-1 draw at Wembley Stadium on Wednesday night. England goes to play Brazil in Rio de Janeiro this weekend, but a Brazilian judge has ruled that the stadium is not safe for fans. The newly refurbished Maracana Stadium has had problems with rock debris and tile across the stadium, making it unsafe to have Sundays matches, according to a military report. The Brazil Football Federation the CBF has appealed the decision, citing missing documents to confirm the stadium is safe. Though they say the paper work is in order, there is still concern for the upcoming Confederations Cup.
For Houstonians, there will be a big match on Friday night, as Mexico will take on Nigeria at the Reliant Stadium. There will be a fan interactive zone right outside the stadium that is free to the public.
· 5:30 PM: Jorge Campos, presented by Bud Light
· 6:00 PM: Claudio Suarez, presented by El Jimador
· 6:00 PM: German Villa, presented by NAPA
· 6:00 PM: Ramon Ramirez, presented by Castrol
· 6:30 PM: Manuel Negrete, presented by Behr
· 6:30 PM: Jared Borgetti, presented by Nature Nutrition