by Olaf Goldbecker
The team of the season in Germany is VfL Wolfsburg. While they were advancing to the Champions League final and therefore had to postpone yesterday’s league game, Wolfsburg was the winner of the match day. This time Frankfurt did not struggle but Potsdam lost.
The hottest race in the league is not for the title nor for the relegation spots. Those spots are nearly decided, Wolfsburg will most likely win their first championship, while Gütersloh and Sindelfingen will go back to 2. Bundesliga. Yet Frankfurt’s and Potsdam’s surprising struggles make the race for rank 2 – the second Champions League spot – the most important matter of the current season.
After losing five points in the last two games, Frankfurt reacted during the week and fired Coach Philipp Dahm. Dahm replaced Sven Kahlert earlier this season after a bad start, and now youth coach Sascha Glass guides the team until the end of the season. His pre-predecessor Kahlert is now coaching Duisburg and was the opponent this weekend. Frankfurt had little trouble in an expected 5-2 win. Duisburg was able to close the cut twice but at the end of the day it was an easy day for the new coach.
The surprise of the match day happened in Essen where the struggling home team proved their class on the defensive end in a 1-0 win over Turbine Potsdam. Isabelle Wolf was the scorer of the day after 71 minutes. Bayern Munich gained a barely convincing 2-0 win over relegation contenders Sindelfingen on goals by Katharina Baunach and Carina Wenninger. One week after the positive surprise against Frankfurt, SC Freiburg showed their other face and drowned 0-4 at Bad Neuenahr, a team which so far barely was known for offensive quality.
To finish the relegation situation, FF USV Jena defeated rivals FSV Gütersloh with a clear 3-0 scoreline.
Wolfsburg sits on top with 44 pts in 17 games. Frankfurt overtook Potsdam and moves up to 38 pts but just has four games left, while Potsdam at 37 has one more game to play. Bayern Munich will have to worry about leaving so many points at bottom teams since it barely ever was so easy to get the second spot – with 33 points and four games to play the distance seems too big for them now. The spot above the relegation line is occupied by Jena at 19 points and only a miracle can keep Sindelfingen (8 pts and 5 games left) and Gütersloh (7 pts and 4 games left) in the top league.