Yesterday, while Germany celebrated its national holiday (Day of German Unity, read about it here), several of the football associations that are part of the German FA used the opportunity to play their respective cup tournaments.
In Saxony-Anhalt, it is called Lotto-Pokal, and the record winners are 1. FC Magdeburg. As a Regionalliga side they had a bye in Round 1, and the U23 received another bye, on the grounds of having won the cup in the last season. Yesterday, both teams played in the second round, and both won. Naturally I was unable to attend both games, so a friend and I decided t go to Wernigerode to watch the match of FC Magdeburg first team there.
The pitch was one of the smallest I have seen so far. The distance between the touch line and the spectators can’t have been more than two feet and thanks to this the pitch had another peculiarity: both benches were behind one of the goals.
Magdeburg faced a tier VI side, FC Einheit Wernigerode, and so the game was widely expected to be a rather one-sided affair, although some doubt had crept up due to Magdeburg’s series of bad results.
Dirk Heyne fielded an experimental squad, with a freshly fit Ivica Jarakovi? up front together with Matthias von der Weth. Florian Müller got valuable bench time, as did Stephan Neumann and Christopher Kullmann. Nevertheless, Magdeburg dominated the game from the start and took an early lead, only to have it promptly disallowed for offside. Then Wejsfelt scored, with the same result. But when Wejsfelt headed a corner into the goal, it finally stood and Magdeburg were one up. For the remainder of the first half Magdeburg dominated, but were unable to capitalize on their superiority, thanks to some decent reflexes by Einheit’s goalie.
In the second half, this continued and when Magdeburg got a freekick in front of goal, the choice fell on Lindemann to hit it – and hit it he did, firing a low shot past the wall into the corner that was goalkeeper territory. At least it should have been, judging from the position of the wall, yet the goalie was nowehere to be seen.
Eric Agyemang who had been subbed in for von der Weth brought home another goal after some great work by Jarakovi?. All in all, a very fun hundred-mile round trip with a decent result.
Line-up (only the Magdeburg one, I didn’t catch a program so I’m at a loss for the Wernigerode players)
Unger – Wejsfelt (Grundmann), Prest, Otte – Kallnik (Habryka), Müller – Lindemann, Manai, Tornieporth – von der Weth (Agyemang, Jarakovi?
The U23 team beat Tier IV side VfB Sangerhausen with one goal from defender Marcel Probst apparently.
In the next round, 1. FC Magdeburg will not travel very far – the first team will play Magdeburger SV Preußen (last season’s finalists) while the U23 squad will face Germania Halberstadt, who they beat in the semi-final of last season’s competition. Matches are scheduled to be played on October 13 and 14, although at the moment both the first team and the U23 match are assigned the same date – but here’s hoping I can see both.