Guten Tag from Munich, Salman Mitha , European/German correspondent and Bundesliga Radio commentator on Ligaradio.
A discussion point after the Bayern-Milan Champions League tie: What a solid performance Bayern goalkeeper Michael Rensing had covering for the suspended Oliver Kahn in the first leg especially since it was Kahn who gave up four goals at the San Siro last year and two in the loss in Munich to AC Milan in the second leg. The 22-year-old Rensing has been waiting patiently over the last couple of years to take over for Kahn, who is still going strong at at 37 and has 292 wins playing a record playing in 528 matches. Perhaps Rensing’s latest outing was a sign that Uli Hoeness and Co. to change. Kahn has already retired from international competition and soon Jens Lehmann will follow. Could Rensing also be consdiered for the national squad? One does not have to look far from the top of the table. Young goalkeepers are plentiful and performing at a high level in the Bundesliga and German national coach Joachin Loew will have to keep a tab on them all:
1. Schalke Manuel Neuer (21 yrs old, 22 matches rookie sensation) 2. Bremen Tim Wiese (25, 107) solid UEFA Cup run. Haunted by his Champions League mishaps. 3. Timo Hildebrand (28, 216) Champions League experience and international caps and has led team to German Cup Final with a clean sheet vs. Wolfsburg. 4. Michael Rensing (22, 12) Has filled in admirably for Kahn when needed.. 5. Nuremberg Raphael Schaefer (28,90) clean sheet against Frankfurt this week to clinch a final berth for the German Cup. 6. Leverkusen Rene Adler (22,5) clean sheets in 3 of first 4 BL matches. He has forced the change from old guard Joerg Butt.
Further down Hannover’s Robert Enke (29,125 first cap vs. Denmark in March), Christian Fiedler of Berlin, (32, 130) and Wolfsburg’s Simon Jentsch (30, 221 who led team to the cup semi-final). A solid corp of German goalkeepers and I challenge anyone to come up with a list like this is another league or country.
Keep up with all the young German goalkeepers of the Bundesliga with the Match day 29 starting Saturday morning at 8:15 CST. Visit the English Language site of the Bundesliga at www.bundesliga.de/en click on the blinking LigaRadio button and the player will automatically launch. This week has six matches including all 90 minutes of the top match Stuttgart host Bayern Munich for third place and a champions league spot for next year. You can also listen to the conference where we bring you highlights and goals from all the matches as they happen.
Please email us with your comments and questions at firstname.lastname@example.org I look forward to hearing from you! Bis dann! (Till next time) Salman