Tag Archives: Admir Mehmedi

Euro 2016 Panini Album – Hardcover version

Now I’ve got the hardcover version of the album I can start my collection, it’s exactly the same as the softcover version with just two small differences. It has a couple of extra pages for some special stickers, the Coca Cola ones and annoyingly a set of the German team which can only be obtained from Mcdonalds. I’ve got two boxes of stickers to go with it and happily each box contains 100 packets of stickers, I’ve opened 10 so far and already have three Germans. Ironically the second German I got was none other than Marco Reus, ironic seeing as how he just got sent home this week. On the subject of irony I also got the sticker of the Slovenian Dusan Svento, not just his Euro sticker but his Bundesliga one too. The other two acquisitions of note were his Köln teammate Jonas Hector and former Freiburg player Admir Mehmedi. Annoyingly enough Christoph Kramer was not only the first German out of the box but the first sticker too. I’ve gotten several of Amir Abrashi’s fellow Albanians but not the man himself so far, hopefully it won’t take too long to get him:

20160524_160632 20160524_160336 20160524_160359Dusan Svento – 1.FC Köln – Bundesliga 2015-16 sticker Dusan Svento - Slovakia - Euro 2016 sticker Christoph Kramer - Germany - Euro 2016 sticker Admir Mehmedi - Switzeland - Euro 2016 sticker Marco Reus - Germany - Euro 2016 sticker Jonas Hector - Germany - Euro 2016 stickerOne other very important sticker I got this week was the 2.Bundesliga Meisterschale:

2.Bundesliga Meisterschale – Bundesliga 2015-16 sticker

Advent Calendar Day 15

Behind door number 15 in the Freiburg calendar was defender Christian Günter. Joining him is the DFB card of Mesut Özil and from the Dortmund calendar defender Marcel Schmelzer.

Mesut Özil - DFB card 2015-16 1 Mesut Özil - DFB card 2015-16 2 Marcel Schmelzer - Dortmund advent calendarToday is the first lot of games of the quarter final of the DFB Pokal, Bayern v Darmstadt is the game I’m watching live. I know how it’s going to end but it’s the one I’m watching regardless. The real excitement for me doesn’t come until tomorrow night when Dortmund play Augsburg, given that it was the latter that knocked Freiburg out, so I want to watch them being knocked out.

Today has already served up some excitement though, I had to wait over month to get my hands on this particular batch of collectibles but I can honestly say it was worth the wait:

Hansi Flick signed photo Hansi Flick & Jogi Löw signed photo Roman Bürki – SC Freiburg 2014-15 signed sticker Marc-Oliver Kempf – SC Freiburg 2014-15 signed sticker Vladimir Darida – SC Freiburg 2014-15 signed sticker Admir Mehmedi – SC Freiburg 2014-15 signed sticker Jonathan Schmid – SC Freiburg 2014-15 signed sticker

Bundesliga MD1 – 2015/16

I’ve been putting off finishing this post, whether it’s because doing so is the final acceptance of Freiburg being in the 2.B or it’s because I was obsessing over the missing video I don’t know. I hadn’t been thinking about it too much last weekend, my fixation on not being able to get the aforementioned video kind of overshadowing everything else. With that and the sleep deprivation I wasn’t really thinking clearly about anything. So it’s only now do I realise that Freiburg lost on the weekend the Bundesliga returned. I know I shouldn’t be superstitious about it, it doesn’t necessarily mean anything, I just can’t help thinking that way.

At least I got everything I wanted on opening night anyhow (baring the video of the Jogi interview that is), I got lots of goals and all of them going in the right direction and I did get the video of Jogi at the match, a kind of consolation prize at least. And I wasn’t too far off in my prediction of the result, I said 3-0 and they won 5-0.

Here are the videos I did get, Jogi at the match and post match interviews with Thomas Müller and Robert Lewandowski:

Saturday did not disappoint either, Leverkusen v Hoffenheim is the game I reluctantly chose to watch at 14:30. Admir Mehmedi with his new side Leverkusen facing off against former team-mate Jonathan Schmid. Mehmedi didn’t start, but came on as a sub and he set up the winner for Leverkusen which was scored by Julian Brandt. A nice goal but all I cared about was the play that led to it. Seeing that really made me miss him, a feeling made all the worse by seeing Freiburg lose in the match before this one. At the end of the game the misery was increased by seeing Mehemdi and Schmid swapping shirts, something which led to the very strange picture of them wearing each others shirts. Because it just wasn’t confusing enough seeing them in another team’s colours, they had to go and make it just a little more confusing.

Then came what I’d really been waiting for, the battle of the Borussias and Roman Bürki’s first Bundesliga start as a Dortmunder. He didn’t disappoint and neither did Dortmund with them starting their first season with Thomas Tuchel in charge. Beating Gladbach, sure, but 4-0, I wonder if anyone saw that coming. Sunday saw Frankfurt lose to Wolfsburg and whilst I always enjoy the opportunity to watch Frankfurt, it was the second game I couldn’t wait for, Stuttgart v Köln. It’s not just because I was right in my prediction about the winning team that I’m happy, I’m happy that they won too. The numbers were in Köln’s favour even if the match itself certainly seemed to be going Stuttgart’s way. The last time Stuttgart beat them at home was in the 1996/97 season, they won 4-0. A very special fact I’ll never get tired of mentioning because that season was Jogi Löw’s first season in charge of Stuttgart.

Getting to the goals of the weekend, well just my favourites anyhow, included in the list is the two goals scored by Marcel Heller for newly promoted Darmstadt against H96. They would have made the list whether I liked them or not, anyone who scores against H96 is more than alright by me.

First up, the very first goal of the season, scored by Medhi Benatia for Bayern against HSV.

Thomas Müller’s second against HSV.

Douglas Costa – Bayern v HSV.

Marco Reus – BVB v Gladbach.

Julian Brandt (Mehemdi assist) – Leverkusen v Hoffenheim.

Marcel Heller – Darmstadt v H96.

And to finish, pictures, first from opening night on Friday, then some of Mehemdi from Leverkusen v Hoffenheim and finally some of Roman from Dortmund v Gladbach:

MD1 - 2015-16 Allianz Arena 1 MD1 - 2015-16 Allianz Arena 2 MD1 - 2015-16 Allianz Arena 3 MD1 - 2015-16 Allianz Arena 4 MD1 - 2015-16 Allianz Arena 5 MD1 - 2015-16 Allianz Arena 6 Bayern v HSV - teams walking out Bayern v HSV - teams line up MD1 - 2015-16 Allianz Arena 7 Lahm, Neuer & Müller – Bayern v HSV Manuel Neuer – Bayern v HSV 1 Philipp Lahm – Bayern v HSV 1 Manuel Neuer – Bayern v HSV 2 Thomas Müller – Bayern v HSV 1 Thomas Müller – Bayern v HSV 2 Thomas Müller – Bayern v HSV 3 Thomas Müller – Bayern v HSV 4 Thomas Müller – Bayern v HSV 5 Thomas Müller – Bayern v HSV 6 Philipp Lahm – Bayern v HSV 2 Philipp Lahm – Bayern v HSV 3 Manuel Neuer – Bayern v HSV 3 Manuel Neuer – Bayern v HSV 4 Thomas Müller – Bayern v HSV 7 Thomas Müller – Bayern v HSV 8 Manuel Neuer – Bayern v HSV 5 Robert Lewandowski – Bayern v HSV 1 Robert Lewandowski – Bayern v HSV 2 Thomas Müller & Philipp Lahm – Bayern v HSV 1 Thomas Müller & Philipp Lahm – Bayern v HSV 2 Thomas Müller & Philipp Lahm – Bayern v HSV 3 Thomas Müller – Bayern v HSV 9 Thomas Müller – Bayern v HSV 10 Admir Mehemdi - B04 v TSG 1 Admir Mehemdi - B04 v TSG 2 Admir Mehemdi - B04 v TSG 3 Admir Mehemdi - B04 v TSG 4 Admir Mehemdi - B04 v TSG 5 Admir Mehemdi - B04 v TSG 6 Admir Mehemdi - B04 v TSG 7 Admir Mehemdi - B04 v TSG 8 Admir Mehemdi - B04 v TSG 9 Admir Mehemdi - B04 v TSG 10 MD1 2015-16 - Signal Iduna Park Roman Bürki – BVB v Gladbach 1 Roman Bürki – BVB v Gladbach 2 Roman Bürki – BVB v Gladbach 3 Roman Bürki – BVB v Gladbach 4

DFB Pokal – 1st round – 2015/16

No major surprises so far, well unless you count Hoffenheim getting knocked out by 1860 München which wasn’t really a surprise to me since I predicted it would happen. No particular reason why, no reason beyond me wanting it to happen anyway. I may have given them a nickname but that shouldn’t be taken as an indication that I like them. As Toby says in The West Wing, “I’m going to make a suggestion which might help you out. But I don’t want this gesture to be mistaken for an indication that I like you.”

I was just fixed on the idea that they would knock Hoffenheim out, and they did, deservedly so. Their victory wasn’t a fluke, they really were the better team. It’s odd, just last week they were Freiburg’s opponents and this week I’m rooting for them. Even odder is the fact that I was rooting for 1860 against one of Hansi’s teams, in Munich, strange. Hansi’s Hoffenheimers are so far the first and only Bundesliga giant to be slain. I wonder if that will change today because last season’s giant killers Arminia Bielefeld face Hertha BSC whom they knocked out last season. I feel somewhat compelled to root for Bielefeld, partly because of last season, partly because it’s where current Freiburg keeper Alexander Schowlow spent last season on loan and finally because Hertha BSC is where Vladimir Darida went. Also an exciting match-up with some potential for an upset is St Pauli against Gladbach on Monday night.

Two other Bundesliga teams came close to getting knocked out too with both Bremen and Augsburg needing extra time to overcome their opponents. Not only that but Augsburg actually went 1-0 down before equalising in the 83rd minute.

There were some small surprises, Karlsruher continuing their terrible start to the season by losing 3-1 to fellow Baden side SSV Reutlingen. Small in the sense they are a 2. Bundesliga side, the game itself was a huge surprise, three penalties which were all successfully converted and three red cards. It was on my list as a game to see, so I was disappointed to only get to see parts of it on the simulcast. But at least I got to see the best parts. Also knocked out from the 2. Bundesliga are Greuther Fürth and 1. FC Union Berlin. Weird fact, Greuther Fürth and Hoffenheim have something else in common besides both getting knocked out yesterday. They both had a former Freiburg man in goal, Sebastian Mielitz for Fürth (who funnily enough didn’t get one league start last season, only two in the Pokal) and Oliver Baumann for Hoffenheim.

Current champions VfL Wolfsburg beat Stuttgarter Kickers 4-1, former Freiburger and Gladbacher Max Kruse getting his first competitive goal in his new team’s colours. And Admir Mehemdi set up the first goal as Leverkusen beat Sportfreunde Lotte 3-0. Freiburg play today, they got drawn with a team from Hamburg by the name of HSV Barmbek-Uhlmhorst. I know nothing about them other than that they won the Hamburg Cup to qualify for the Pokal. Nothing other than the fact that they would have liked to have been drawn with another club, no doubt they had bigger fish in mind. In the words of their goalkeeper, Freiburg are a “friendly club” and are “more beatable than Bayern.”

It’s funny that he put it that way because just yesterday I got several new DVDs of old Germany matches and I was checking them out, making sure they all worked and I heard words to the effect that Jogi Löw is one of the nice guys in German football but that he rules with an iron fist. Not so long ago some people thought he was too nice in fact. Looks can be misleading. Of course I want nothing more than Freiburg to win anyway, but now I want them to do it just so they can wipe the smirk of that guy’s face.

I’m not going to say anything specific on the matter beyond saying that I’d rather Freiburg to have been drawn with someone else too. I’m not pleased about having been drawn with a side from Hamburg not at all. I have no wish to curse Freiburg and their good start to the season. Jogi Löw may not be superstitious, but I certainly am. All I will say is, Freiburg beat Bayern last season and it’s obvious that whilst he would have preferred a bigger club, truth is they’ll be glad they didn’t get them. It would make for a miserable afternoon, what was it Chandler said in Friends, “your little men are going to get scored on more times than your little sister.”

First up is a video of the complete match of 1860 v Hoffenheim, getting this more than makes up for not being able to watch Eintracht Frankfurt’s match:

Up next is some highlights, not all of them, just the ones that were of interest to me, minus the Hoffenheim ones because annoyingly whilst I have the full match I don’t have the highlights, but then I can’t complain really:

And to finish, pictures of Max Kruse celebrating his first competitive goal as a Wolfsburg player:

Max Kruse - Stuttgarter Kickers v VfL Wolfsburg 1 Max Kruse - Stuttgarter Kickers v VfL Wolfsburg 2

Making changes

There’s been quite a few changes going on lately and there some more to come, the biggest one of all being the impending change to my usual schedule due to Freiburg’s relegation. Just ten days to go now till the season kicks off and thirteen days till their first match against Nürnberg. Them being in the 2. Bundesliga means for one thing that the season starts a whole month earlier and that the weekend will look a little differently. Matches are played on different days and at different times, which will mean having to get up earlier on weekends. And on some weekends there will be three matches on Saturday to watch instead of two.

Talking about days of the week, one thing that’s weird right now is the fact that I’m convinced it’s Monday instead of Tuesday, just as I was convinced that yesterday was Sunday. Because of the World Cup final of course.

I hadn’t thought about this in any great detail until now, I didn’t want to. So only now has it occurred to me that I may occasionally have to miss a Bundesliga match I want to see. There’s no clash on MD1 at least which will be MD3 for the 2. Bundesliga. Then Freiburg play on Saturday and due to the way it’s worked out I get to see everyone I want to see that weekend. Bayern on Friday, Freiburg first on Saturday and then Leverkusen v Hoffenheim. Who do I root for there? Admir Mehmedi with his new team or Hansi’s Hoffenheimers? Then the battle of the Borrusias afterwards. And Frankfurt who visit Wolfsburg on Sunday, followed by Stuttgart v Köln.

So I get to see Freiburg, Manuel Neuer, Roman Bürki, Frankfurt, Stuttgart and Köln all in the same weekend. I should treat that as a one off, to avoid future disappointments. Not every weekend will work out so well, better to be prepared for that eventuality now.

The other big change has been the alteration to my usual cinema routine, somewhere along the way film Friday became football Friday and stayed that way, even when the season ended. And even though in truth, I can go to the cinema and be back to watch the football if I were to either only see one film or to go earlier. I have decision to make of that nature with regards to this Friday, to go and see Self/less or not. I wanted to see 13 Minutes but of course that’s not showing here. I’d definitely go out for that, a German film, no question. I could go and be back in time for Dortmund’s friendly.

It’s not missing the match I’m worried about, that’s just my cover. In truth I don’t want to go out and be surrounded or be in the vicinity of any packs of kids or teenagers. That’s the real reason, and even though I can outline the perfectly logical reasons for that I’m still reluctant to tell anyone in real life that. They most likely already know, without me saying anything. At least they do if the other week is anything to go by. It was about something different but still related. Then it was about me obsessively checking the time. They told me to relax, that I’d get there in time for the train no problem. They knew before I did, that I was anxious about that. I don’t know why but that bugged me somehow, enough to write a chapter about it anyway. I’ve got three pages so far and I’m still no closer to figuring out why.

The first was imposed upon me, the second just kind of happened without me realising it, the others however were done by choice. For example I finally moved Hansi’s boots from where they’ve been since they arrived. I knew I couldn’t keep them there forever, at least I didn’t have to move them far and they are still close by. Right next to my bed in fact and right next to my mini-man of Jogi Löw. The remaining changes whilst by choice, were ones I never thought I’d make. I’m not so good at dealing with change of any kind, whether I know it’s going to happen or not. But I tend to be an all or nothing kind of person, so make one change, you may you as well make some more. I’m going to be freaking out anyway, so it makes no difference.

I never envisaged altering the tagline to my blog, thought about it but never thought I’d actually do it. I did and I’m happy with what’s there now. Although I think there’s something missing from it, I think Freiburg belong there somehow, I just haven’t figured out how yet. I know it’s slightly unfair, having Jogi’s team there and not Hansi’s. But despite him having played for Bayern and despite the fact that Manuel Neuer, Thomas Müller and Philipp Lahm do, I’m still not sure I can put them there. But who knows, things can change after all. And if I were to come up with something suitably catchy or something that amused me, then I may make my peace with it.

Something like this: Jogi & Hansis Fußballwunderland – Ein Herz, zwei Teams: SCF & FCB. Ein Land = Deutschland

Well that didn’t take long, just ten minutes between thinking I couldn’t put them in the tagline or thinking I couldn’t come up with anything and then that comes into my head. I’m starting to like it now. Like the theme, I’m trying it out, I may come up with something else or just decide to keep the original but for now the new one stays. Maybe I could use this to design my new banner. A picture of each of them on either end, one of Jogi in a Freiburg shirt and one of Hansi in a Bayern one, maybe with the badge of each club in the corner of each picture. And a really great picture of the two of them in the middle. Now I know how I’m spending the morning.

Only problem is I have so many good pictures of the two of them. So many which would look good up there, so many which I think I would like to have up there to greet visitors. And it’s tougher knowing that there are two less slots, since the end two are already taken. I think this is not going to be an easy decision to make and is something which will require a lot of thought and a no doubt stringent selection process.

Equally I never thought I’d change the theme, but I’m trying out a new one. I’m not sure if I’ll stick with it or not yet. I want to, because it’s in Freiburg’s colours and because they are (partly) Die Mannschaft’s colours too. One thing I’m not sure about in particular is the text being in white, I can’t decide if it gives me a headache or not.

On the subject of making decisions, I read something earlier, words to the effect that if you make a decision quick enough, you may get a second chance on the off chance you need it. From reading that I got something to add to my “you know you’re obsessed” list, because as soon as I read that I thought about Jogi and about how he wants the team to pass and move the ball even faster, he wants quicker reaction times, but still maintaining a degree of precision and accuracy of course. You have to know exactly where you want to put the ball, the idea being you have that in your head before it even reaches you. I guess you could use that kind of thinking in life. That you know what you’re doing is the right thing, because you’ve thought it through but not so much that you miss the opportunity. Spend too much time thinking about the perfect pass and you’ll end up losing the ball or getting closed down with no options left for a pass.

Continuing that theme, there’s something else he said that can apply in real life too. One of areas he mentioned as needing improvement was clearances, he wants them to be less mindless, a little less of just kicking the ball into touch kind of thing. Don’t just panic in other words and boot the ball out of danger, or what you think is out of danger, because when you respond like that without really thinking, you don’t know where the ball is going to end up. Plus you’re potentially wasting possession, if you take a moment and think about where you’re clearing the ball to, you could end up retaining possession and beginning a new attack instead of needlessly giving it away.

It’s the not panicking that’s key, keeping a level head, not letting fear or anxiety being the key factor in your response to any given situation. That I could definitely learn from. Fighting that instinct to panic and run away, trying to stay calm. I should put some more thought into this, into having a fixed set of strategies. Maybe it’s time to finally get round to making those Hansi cards I got the idea for a few months back.

One final Hansi related thing. It’s now one year and one day since the last time he stood by Jogi’s side. At several points over the last few months I’ve wondered when will it feel real. If it would be when the replacement got there, when the new year started or when the season ended. Or would it be now, when it had been a whole year. The answer, it’s none of them. It’s strange I’ve both accepted and not accepted it. I’ve accepted it in the sense that I’ve worked it into the Löw adventures, and the fact that if I wanted to, I could have two versions of them. It would be more work, but I could have written two versions, one where he stays his assistant and one where he doesn’t. It’s not like I haven’t had multiple versions of the same universe before. But I didn’t do that, so I must have accepted it on some level.

Typical, now I’m thinking about it. About having more versions of it, not changing whether or not Hansi leaves or not but going back and rewriting history, well alternate history. Like what if the first chapter took place earlier, not after the summer but before it. That offers up all sorts of interesting possibilities and is a very intriguing idea.

I’m glad I didn’t take that direction because I already technically have two versions of their adventures. Not exactly two versions in the sense that there’s no real difference in the story, it’s just certain chapters I don’t put online or let anyone read them. Super Jogi and the social stories are not for sharing.

One Roman for another?

That I did not see coming, apparently Borussia Dortmund are interested in Freiburg keeper Roman Bürki. Hence the title, it seems Dortmund want to swap one Roman for another. They want a reliable Roman and not the calamitous error ridden Roman that Weidenfeller so often was last season. I would obviously be very sad to see Roman leave Freiburg, but you can’t deny they have good taste. He was last season the second best keeper in the league, plus he’s a bargain at around €4.5 million. To make it even easier for them he has an exit clause in his contract. This is all so confusing, I have no idea how to feel about any of this. I know it’s just a rumor and I really shouldn’t be reading transfer gossip but in my defence I didn’t go looking for it, it was in my inbox and that was the title, so it wasn’t really possible to ignore it. I couldn’t delete it without reading it, it would be like deleting Roman and I would never do that. How strange these things are. In my FIFA Ultimate team I demoted Weidenfeller to back-up keeper when I got Bürki or as he’s known “the silver Neuer.” Neuer is impossible to get, at least without paying actual cash anyway and I refuse to do that. For me Bürki’s not second best, nor a poor man’s Neuer, as much as I like Manuel I would still choose Roman any day.

I like Dortmund yet I couldn’t like them if they took Roman, I know he has to go somewhere. Would it be better or worse if he went to a team I didn’t like? If that happened would I then not like him anymore? I suppose I should be grateful if he stays in Germany, then it won’t be too difficult to keep seeing him play. It’s all so unfair, I never even got the chance to have a goalkeeper shirt with his name on the back. I know it’s stupid and I wouldn’t be showing any loyalty to his inevitable replacement but I still want to get a shirt with his name on the back. A Freiburg one, though if he went to Dortmund I would save up for one of those too. I liked Weidenfeller and bought one because of him, why should the same not apply for my very favourite Roman?

And now it really begins, the waiting and the worrying. Just when the day was going so well, making that video of Jogi earlier, writing more for the match-day 34 story and the best thing of all, whilst doing both those things I had Hansi Flick’s training shirt sitting next to me the whole time. I think I’ll wait till tomorrow to post pictures now, I don’t want to be celebrating anything whilst thinking about saying goodbye to Roman. Suddenly having the shirt in my possession no longer makes me so happy. I’ve been fairly distracted the past few days, meaning I’ve been too busy to think over or get upset about being relegated and all that comes with it. Now it’s just like the Saturday it happened, the same feelings, just as intense as that day.

It’s ruined what I had planned to do with the rest of my free time this week, I was going to make videos from all the highlights of Freiburg’s games of Roman, that doesn’t seem like such a good idea right now.

The other rumor I read has made me feel even worse than the Roman one, if such a thing were possible. It concerns my second favourite Freiburger Admir Mehmedi. Apparently HSV are showing some interest in him, that cannot be, he cannot go there. Not just because of what they did either, it’s not the right place for him, he deserves better than that. Leverkusen also allegedly have some interest in him, if he leaves and he most likely will, I don’t really care which team he goes to. None of them will be tolerable, but there are two in particular that would be unbearable, HSV and the other H that played a part in Freiburg being relegated. Speaking of H’s, it’s strange that one of the departures that has been confirmed is that of Jonathan Schmid to local rivals Hoffenhein and that I don’t seem to be very upset about it. It’s not that I don’t like him or anything, I do, he’s just not a favourite of mine so it hurts a lot less.

This is all so depressing, if I’m not going to post pictures of the latest addition to my collection, I should at least mention the other good thing from today. That is that Germany remain in their place at the top of the FIFA World Rankings, they are no.1 with 1,775 points with just over 250 points more than second placed Belgium. World Cup runners up Argentina are third and 2010 winners Spain are tenth.

There is another numbers related thing to be happy about, Jogi once more being at the top of my YouTube list. Not only that but he accounts for four out of the top five:

screenshot-www youtube com 2015-06-03 22-53-25 Six days to go until Germany play the USA who are ranked 27th in the world rankings.  One final piece of statistics trivia, well several pieces technically. The day before yesterday I got some views from Madagascar, how awesome is that. And then yesterday some from Lebanon. Today there were some more from Lebanon and this is the part that amused me, some from Uruguay. The reason being that a few days ago I finished making the Jogi videos for the 2010 World Cup and the last one was of course the third place game against Uruguay. Plus I actually watched them play late last night (or early this morning depending on your perspective). I watched an old game of theirs from the 2011 Copa America in which they played Chile, a game I only watched because there was nothing else to watch.

It’s also a great source of amusement to me that someone found this by typing in the words “non stop Hansi” into a search engine. I have no clue what that means, or what they were looking for, or even if it’s the right Hansi, but still it’s funny.

2. Bundesliga count-down – 50 days to go.

The Trikot Surprise/A Referee Related Dream

Usually the problem is that something didn’t happen as I expected it to, right now it’s sort of the opposite. It’s not really a problem as such, I mean I’m glad I won, that’s not the issue. The issue is that I had expected to lose and had prepared myself for that fact. So resigned to losing was I that I had already worked out what to do with the money. Alas copies of the Switzerland and Israel games shall have to wait a little longer, as will my next box of stickers. I’m sure it will be worth it when I get to lay eyes on the shirt in person. I already have two pairs of his boots, how could I not do everything I could to get a shirt of his too.

The week may have been not so good to begin with because of the disappointment that Monday’s night game brought. So disappointed was I with the result that not even Jogi being there and getting the video made up for it. But things are looking not so bad now, I won the shirt and I have new pictures of Hansi and Jogi from the presentation related to the new design for the DFB Academy. And now the waiting is over hopefully I can sleep a little better, I’m aiming for seven nights of unbroken sleep, something which I’m not sure I’ve gotten in the past few months. I think all those late nights are finally catching up with me. It’s three days into the month and I’ve not read more than five pages of either of the books I’m currently reading, I hate being too tired to read. Post number 470 and I get to celebrate with something suitably Hansi themed, perfect.

2. Bundesliga count-down – 51 days to go.

As well as pictures I have the snippets from the video of both Hansi and Jogi.

Hansi Flick - DFB Akademie 1 Hansi Flick DBB Akademie 2 Joachim Löw  - DFB Akademie 1 Joachim Löw  - DFB Akademie 2And now to the second part of the title, the referee related dream. It happened the night, well the morning really by the time I got to bed after the Pokal final. It was at a match, right at the end, just when the final whistle is blown. There are people on the pitch mixing with the players, myself amongst them except I seemed to be already there, that is I didn’t get to the pitch from the stands, I was on the touchline. I remember seeing two sets of kits, Freiburg and Bayern. I also remember hearing H96 being mentioned.

I came across the referee who had in his hands the match ball. I asked if I could touch it, he agreed and let me do so. Next thing I know he’s put it in my hands and then walks off. It’s weird, I was reading about German referees before going to bed and then one appears in my dream. That makes me sounds like a nerd, randomly reading about referees, it wasn’t entirely random, there was a reason for it. The reason being an interview with the referee of the Pokal final on the DFB website. Not that there’s anything wrong with being a nerd or reading about referees without any specific reason, I did after all once spend part of an afternoon looking at referee autograph cards on eBay.

To get back to the dream, I now had the match ball in my possession and I got it signed by Admir Mehmedi. I don’t remember this taking place but I know it happened because his signature was on there. It was not like his signature that I have on my card at all, this one was detailed, intricate and extremely neat which is somewhat like him actually. He’d also written the words “Mehemdi, not so small.” I have no idea what that is meant to mean or refer to. These words made Jogi Löw laugh when he saw them. When I came across him I asked him to sign it too, he happily did so. Whilst he was doing so I mentioned Admir and said that I had thought about getting him to sign it like he had, that same kind of signature. I told him that I didn’t ask him to do that because it wouldn’t be “his signature.” It wouldn’t be identifiable on sight as his. I think by asking him to change his signature, it’s like asking him to be something or someone he’s not. After he signed it, we walked around the pitch and talked for a while, unfortunately I don’t remember any details beyond him saying “Hansi Flick.” That I do remember, I can never forget the particular way he says it. There are also three others names that I remember hearing at some point, Mehmedi, Schweinstiger and Stindl.

The Final Sleepless Night/SC Freiburg Autogrammkarten

Post number 447, I maybe should have saved this hopefully lucky number for later today, but I’ve got enough on my mind to need a little of that luck myself right now.  I know I shouldn’t still be awake but I’m too excited/worried to sleep. Just about ten hours now until the moment of truth. After reading the DFB site I found something else to preoccupy me and keep me awake, an article about the film “Die Mannschaft.” It’s about making and submitting a video, about explaining what the team means to you and how you are connected to it. Should be fun, right, after all I love making videos. Except I like making videos that amuse me, using a video to communicate something, to express feelings, that sounds very uncomfortable all of a sudden. I’m torn, I want to try and make something for it, but I have no clue what. Maybe because first of all I don’t know exactly what the answers to those questions are. Or maybe it’s that I do know the answers and I’m afraid of putting those answers in a video, or afraid that they won’t come across well or that other people will think them strange.

I wish they would explain more about what they are looking for, about what they want from a video. For example, does it matter if there are no people in your video, can you use just pictures and footage? I mean, they don’t expect the person who made the video to be in the video do they? I hope not because that would be a deal-breaker for me, absolutely impossible.

If I were to make something I would want to focus on Jogi & Hansi obviously. And Manuel Neuer too. But mostly the former, but still I’m not sure what it is I want to say.

Why is this so hard, how is it that I spend hours watching matches and videos of them and reading about them, have spent absurd amounts of money on collectibles related to them, have sacrificed my all important cinema schedule for them at times and made many other sacrifices yet I still can’t say just what it is they mean to me. I just like Germany a great deal. But there has to be more to it than that, doesn’t there?

Is it that I don’t know or I don’t want to say? Because in the case of Jogi & Hansi I think I have a pretty good idea about what they mean to me. I just don’t know if I can put into words, let alone make a video expressing any of it. The idea of having someone you can trust, someone who knows how you think, someone who is always where they are meant to be. And then the weird stuff, or what I think is weird or could be seen that way. That the sometimes strange ways in which Jogi expresses himself on the touchline are more than just a source of amusement to me, they mean so much more than that. It’s given me a license to feel a little bit more comfortable in my own skin, a little bit less worried about seeming weird to other people, a little less inclined to hide my tics and stims. Now if anyone says I’m acting or looking strange, I have one thing and one thing only to say, if it’s good enough for Jogi Löw then it is good enough for me.

But is that a suitable topic for such a video? Or is it acceptable because it is my honest answer, they did ask what the team means to you and they are part of the team. I wonder, does my collection in itself say something, that for me that is how I express myself. But how can you communicate that in a video?

The only thing I can say on the subject that comes close to making any sense, can only be expressed or explained in the context of autism. But even then, I don’t think it explains what they mean to me, it just demonstrates how much they do. Is that even relevant? The fact that half my universe is built around them (the other half is of course reserved for Freiburg), that I abandoned pretty much all of my other special interests for them.

A while back I wrote about playing the autism card in relation to a certain Hansi DFB related mission, I still haven’t completed that nor am I close to doing so. I guess what I’m trying to get at is, not so much is it ok to play the autism card here, but that I think what I want to say will make a lot more sense if I did.

I have no idea as to how to answer the question “how are you connected to the team?” What does that even mean? I hope this makes more sense when I’ve gotten some sleep, if I ever get any that is.

Last night was the final of the under 17s European Championship, Germany lost 4-1 to France. I forgot to record the game, now I won’t get to watch it in English or German. On the upside I did get a new photo of Hansi Flick:

Hansi Flick - U17 EMI also got a new one of Jogi from last Saturday’s game:

screenshot-www t-online de 2015-05-22 21-56-13Three of my latest and rather special collectibles:

Roman Bürki - SC Freiburg 2014-15 Admir Mehmedi - SC Freiburg 2014-15 Vladimir Darida - SC Freiburg 2014-15

19-03-1996 SCF 3 FCB 1/ 16-05-2015 SCF 2 FCB 1

So many fantastic titles, all of them equally awesome, it was not easy to pick between them all. One of the close contenders was “Mehmedi – the Man.” But seeing as how I’m going to use that phrase in the post itself, I thought I should use something else for the title.

History was made once more, nineteen years ago was the last time this happened. Nineteen long years. Freiburg have now beaten Bayern four times. How fitting it is, the year after the most famous Freiburger leads Germany to their fourth World Cup, his home team beat the mighty Bayern for just the fourth time in history. That makes seven victories in total now this season. Lucky number seven. Dare I hope they can make it eight against Hannover? And just to make things even better, this is post number 434.

Bayern, you can keep your record number of Bundesliga titles and other trophies, your international superstars, your WM champions Neuer, Götze, Lahm, Müller, Boateng and Schweinstiger. You can keep it all (except for Hansi Flick, we need him), whatever the result was today, win, loss or draw, there is nowhere else I would rather be. Nur der SCF.

Last night I stayed up late because I was worrying about the game, as a result I watched Inglourious Basterds on TV, there’s a line from the film that’s a favourite of mine and is very appropriate here: “every once in a while, fate reaches out and extends its hand.”

Whilst I didn’t get much sleep I did have a dream in which Jogi and Hansi featured. It was at a Freiburg game, I didn’t know who they were playing but it was a big game. Here’s the really weird part, instead of being on the touchline Jogi and Hansi were in a bunker type room below the stadium. A room which contained a bowling alley. Michael Ballack was also there and him and Hansi were bowling together. Jogi didn’t want to play. You might wonder what bowling has to do with Hansi or Jogi, the answer is nothing. I think the answer can be found in my fascination with the film The Big Lebowski. I like to think it was a message from the Dude. A message to take things as they come, to stop stressing out and just enjoy the game. A good piece of advice, of course it was impossible to follow. I’m just glad that I dreamed about Freiburg and they didn’t lose, a curse which has befallen other teams. I had wondered what I was going to do Sunday because there’s no games then, now I know what I’m doing, I’m going to watch the English highlights of Freiburg beating Bayern. What a wonderful thing to wake up to. The new Danish show 1864 can wait, this is much more important.

There are no words sufficient to describe how happy I was then and how happy I am now. I wish there had been someone here to hug, someone to celebrate with. That is not something I think often, at least I wasn’t completely alone, I did have my mascot. It was a nerve-wracking experience watching the game, made all the worse by keeping track of events elsewhere at the same time. When the commentator announced that Augsburg had equalized I had never been more appreciative of being able to understand German. Of course Augsburg went on to lose to Hannover anyway which isn’t great, but who cares when you not only win the last but one match of the Absteigskampf but against Bayern. Paderborn lost too but only because of a last minute own goal. And Stuttgart beat HSV. Which means the table looks like this:

Bundesliga table - 16th May

To think if that penalty had been given, it may have been just like it was nineteen years ago. It could have been 3-1, just like then. But I’m not greedy. I’m happy with the result, I know safety is not secured yet and cautious optimism is the phrase of the day, but after that it feels like they can do it, they can survive.

It’s just so funny, if the penalty had been given and it had been three. It’s funny because of how Nils Petersen (former Bayern player) celebrated his last minute winner. He took a dive.The source of the amusement is that Klinsmann had kind of a reputation where that was concerned, a reputation he shed when he moved to England by asking journalists in his first press conference if they knew of any good diving schools. It was Klinsmann who scored Bayern’s only goal, via a penalty in 1996. In 1996 on the day Freiburg were beating Bayern, Jogi Löw was in Leverkusen, he was Rolf Fringer’s assistant at the time, they drew 0-0. I just realised, I didn’t know that last night, that Stuttgart played Leverkusen that day and yet Michael Ballack was in my dream anyway. Relevant because he played for both Leverkusen and Bayern.  Another weird coincidence is that back then the third winning goal was scored in the 88th minute and here the winner was scored in the 89th.

Petersen is only on loan from Bremen, I hope he stays here. I feel like a kid who has just found an abandoned kitten because the phrase that is stuck in my head is “can we keep him, please, can we keep him?”

Anyhow, a GIF of Petersen’s dive:

Petersen_takes_a_dive_goal_celebration_against_BayernIt was Nils Petersen who got the winner but credit also goes to Admir Mehemdi who scored the equaliser, another beautiful goal from him. I hope he scores quite a few more like that next season. The goals:

Back-up link.

Wir brauchen nicht Messi
Wir haben Mehmedi
Mehmedi ist kein der Schweizer Messi
Er ist Mehmedi
Mehmedi = Der Mann

I wish I had some pictures of him celebrating but wisely he decided not to go over the top in that regard, there were after all 58 more minutes to play and one should never take anything for granted in football, least of all against Bayern. How heavenly it sounds, to hear the fans chanting his name when he’s substituted. The following picture is the only one I have:

Freiburg players celebrate equaliser against BayernTo continue with the pictures, those two from last night’s post are more fitting than I ever could have realised. I’m going to add another one here, one of a very happy Jogi.


vlcsnap-2015-01-23-11h53m33s70vlcsnap-2015-05-04-07h29m26s170One would think there could be no downside to all of this, but there is one small one. Last night whilst I couldn’t sleep I was reading my latest Jogi & Hansi adventure, the chapter that was inspired by seeing them at the game on Tuesday night. Whilst I was reading it and thinking over the end, how the game would go and what the result would mean for the end of the story, I came up with the idea that if Freiburg were to pull off a shock victory today, I would post that story. I went a little further than that, I promised myself in fact and made a note so as not to forget. And of course they did win, so now I have to post a Jogi story which is one of the ones I said I would never post though I have to finish it first, I can’t make my mind up about how to end it.

Jogi tells Hansi that he can’t hug him on Saturday because he’ll be the enemy. Hansi asks him if Freiburg were to do the seemingly impossible, could he refuse Jogi a hug. What I’m trying to decide is, would Hansi enforce the rule, he says that he can’t say no to Jogi but he never thought he’d have to put it to the test. The other thing I’m thinking about is whether or not Jogi will use it against him, to tease him. I don’t know if I can finish it right now, it may have to wait until tomorrow. After such a late night and the excitement of today I am exhausted.

Last thing, the videos. A very angry Christian Streich when the penalty wasn’t given. The celebrations after the final whistle.  And the full highlights of the game. I do have the highlights of all of today’s games but they shall have to be uploaded tomorrow.

The Final Friday/Abstiegskampf

It is going to be very long weekend, that’s the disadvantage of playing on a Friday, now you have to spend the rest of the weekend watching and waiting. I didn’t get a lot of sleep last night worrying about tonight’s game and I suspect the rest of the weekend will go much the same way. Only it won’t be one long night ahead of me but two because whilst Hannover play Bremen tomorrow and Stuttgart play Mainz later the same day, Paderborn do not play till Sunday.

I should not have written that, I should never have written that Hamburg would be allowed to ruin my Friday. Because that’s exactly what happened, they got a goal and a point that they did not deserve. Someone online the other day said that the Bundesliga is not for those with weak nerves, oh how right they were. How nerve-shredding it is to go one up in the twenty-fifth minute and the spending the next sixty-five minutes in a perpetual state of fear, knowing that at no point can you think we’re safe now. Not even when the 90th minute has passed can you breathe and think it’s over now, made that mistake before against Hannover, won’t be doing that again any time soon.

Last night I dreamed that Jogi was at the game, that Freiburg scored and despite being in the crowd, he celebrated in the manner he does down on the touchline. It wasn’t entirely wrong, they did score and in doing so provided a reason to celebrate, just a shame they didn’t give him and us a reason to celebrate again sixty-five minutes later. Though I have to say, at this point I wouldn’t be celebrating too much, more breathing a sigh of relief. Right now that would be enough, just knowing that they are safe. As things stand at the moment, I don’t have that and won’t have that for the next two weeks, it will be undecided right until the final day.

Bayern may have the title all sown up but there is still plenty to play for everyone else, there’s still the battle for second place with Gladbach gunning for Wolfsburg and whilst the battle for Champions League places has been definitively settled, the fight for the Europa League spots continues. Leaving of course the relegation battle which is going to go right down to the wire, right down to the very last game. The last day is not going to be fun at all, two games in which four of the teams in the bottom will fight it out for survival. Freiburg visiting Hannover and Paderborn playing host to Stuttgart. Even though I complained about it, I suppose it’s a blessing in one way that all the games on the final two days are played on the same day and at the same time for it means there will be no waiting. You’ll know straight away who is safe and who is not. Normally when I’m watching one match I don’t like to check how the others are going, partly because it’s distracting and partly in case I want to watch them later. I won’t be able to avoid doing that on the next two Saturdays, no way can I wait to find out how the other games turned out.

Time and time again they have taken the lead and then thrown it away late in the game thanks to a careless mistake or a moment of last minute indiscipline, here it wasn’t the case, they really couldn’t have done anything about it. Somehow it hurts more knowing that the goal couldn’t have really been prevented, that it wasn’t a mistake on anyone’s part.It wasn’t Bürki’s fault, in fact he may have been fouled by Kacar. That’s irrelevant now, there’s no point in obsessing over whether or not that was the case.

Last week I was I have to admit a little disappointed in them, they’ve obviously lost many times this season and have thrown many a lead away but there was something particularly annoying about losing to Paderborn. This week I’m not disappointed in them just a little disheartened if that’s the right word, to watch them play so well and with such intensity, to see them clearly be the better side, to be the side that clearly wanted it more and to still not come away with the three points.

A point is better than nothing, it means survival is still theoretically possible, though it does depend on other results going the right way. For example it’s imperative that Paderborn lose to Wolfsburg on Sunday. It’s equally important that Hannover lose to Bremen, whilst I’d place good money on the former I would not place any bets on the latter. Hannover have a new coach and did well to get a draw against Wolfsburg last week so their game could go either way as could events in Stuttgart. Seeing as how Freiburg played tonight I’ll most likely watch Frankfurt’s game, they play host to Hoffenheim. That game has no significance for Freiburg, I should really be watching the Hannover game but I can’t bear to watch another team fighting for survival, I’d rather take the opportunity to watch Frankfurt instead. Besides that it’ll be fun, one of Jogi’s teams against Hansi’s Hoffenheimers.

After conceding that goal, Hamburg now hold a record no team wants to be the holder of, they are the first team in the Bundesliga to concede 2,500 goals. Given that defensively speaking they’ve been one of the worst teams in the bottom third of the table, that comes as no surprise. They are breaking all the wrong kinds of records this season and if they were to get relegated they would break another because they are the only team who are one of the founding members of the Bundesliga to have never been relegated. There’s another record that they’ve been scarily close to as well this season, that of the least goals ever scored in a season. That record is held by the infamous SC Tasmania 1900 Berlin who in their one season in the top flight scored just fifteen goals, only seven less than Hamburg’s current tally. The story of Tasmania Berlin has to be one of the strangest Bundesliga stories ever. They only got to be in the top flight because of Hertha BSC’s relegation due to their breaking of the player salary rules. Unbelievable as it sounds the Berlin Wall was the reason for their promotion. The authorities decided that there had to be a team from Berlin in the top flight, for political and symbolic purposes. That season was also when the Bundesliga was expanded to eighteen teams, in order to provide space for the two promoted teams.

Speaking of the league table, this is how things look until tomorrow’s games are played:

screenshot-www bundesliga com 2015-05-08 23-08-08Admir Mehmedi is the man who got the goal for Freiburg, only his third of the season, an excellent goal it was too. It’s funny that he’s one of my favourite players and that he plays for Freiburg, the reason for that being the fact that he scored his first international goal for Switzerland in their 5-3 victory over Germany in 2012. A result which resulted in a more than a little criticism for Jogi Löw and was something of a surprise given that Switzerland had not beaten their neighbors since 1956. I don’t have a copy of that game yet, the reason being the only person who has the whole game has it in Spanish, I’m still holding out for a German copy before I give in and get it from them. Partly for completion sake, partly because of the score line and because of Mehmedi but also because it was the game in which Marc-Andre Ter Stegen made his international debut.

It’s cool that I got Mehmedi’s Bundesliga sticker just last night, a nice little prophecy that was. Getting his sticker wasn’t the only good thing this week, today I reached ten thousand views, something that is even better because when I saw this, I had seven views from Brazil. How perfect is that, seven goals, seven views and Brazil, you couldn’t ask for a better trifecta of number perfection.

It’s a real shame that they didn’t win, it really was a super sweet one touch goal from Mehmedi. It’s also a shame that he hasn’t scored more often this season, he has the talent to do so. The following videos and pictures would be a lot more joyful were I celebrating their victory obviously, they still bring a little bit of joy, victory or not. First up is a GIF of Roman Bürki celebrating, then a video of  a super save of his followed by a video of the goal. And to finish pictures of Mehmedi and some of the team celebrating:

Roman Bürki celebrates - HSV v SC Freiburg

Back-up link.

Admir Mehmedi & Jonathan Schmid - HSV v SCF SCF celebrate Mehmedi goal against HSV Admir Mehmedi - goal celebration - HSV v SCF