Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : October 19th 2013 Contents A64
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Saturday, October 19, 2013
secured a 2-1 victory over Hoffenheim
yesterday with a goal that wasn t and
Hoffenheim lodged a protest hoping
for a replay.
Stefan Kiessling s header at the near
post from a corner narrowly missed the
target, the ball hit the outside of the net
but rolled into the goal through a hole
in the netting. Although television replays
left no doubt, referee Felix Brych ignored
pleas from Hoffenheim players, who
also appeared to be taken by surprise at
first. Brych was shown the breach in
the netting but the FIFA referee shrugged
and stood by his decision.
"It s a scandal. That was no goal,
there are no two ways about it. We are
definitely going to protest," Hoffen-
heim s managing director Alexander
His Leverkusen counterpart, Rudi
Voeller, also said it was "definitely" not
a goal and said his team was in an
"That s not how we wanted to win
the game," Voeller said. "The fair result
would have been a 2-2."
Kiessling s first reaction was to turn
away in frustration at missing the
chance and hold his head in his hands.
Only when his teammates surrounded
him in celebration did Kiessling also
raise his arms in tepid triumph.
"I didn t really see it, I turned away
but I was surprised to see the ball in.
I didn t know how it got in," Kiessling
The incident resembled Thomas
Helmer s famous "phantom goal" for
Bayern Munich against Nuremberg in
1994. That match was replayed.
It wasn t Brych s only controversial
moment. He disallowed a Hoffenheim
goal that was clearly onside and incor-
rectly awarded a penalty to Hoffenheim,
although the spot kick was missed.
Sidney Sam scored against the run
of play to put Leverkusen ahead after
26 minutes and Kiessling s "goal" dou-
bled the lead in the 70th before Sven
Shipplock pulled one back for Hoffen-
heim late in the match.
In the 82nd, Brych awarded a penalty
for Hoffenheim although Roberto
Hilbert played the ball and Roberto
Firmino fell over him. The tackle was
outside the box anyway.
Firmino himself took the shot but
Leverkusen goalkeeper Bernd Leno
stopped it. Firmino pounced on the
rebound but hit the post and Emir
Spahic s clearing attempt also hit the
post before the ball was finally kicked
Sam found the space to slot into the
low corner despite facing three Hof-
fenheim defenders in the 26th.
Gonzalo Castro did the work, deliv-
ering the ball after an unchallenged run
down the middle and Sam scored his
league-high seventh goal of the sea-
Hoffenheim was the team dictating
play but could not use its chances and
also had the misfortune to have a reg-
ular goal mistakenly disallowed for a
Kevin Volland s attempt was blocked
at the last moment, Sejad Salihovic s
free kick was cleared on the line and
Anthony Modeste missed Hoffenheim s
best chance when Leverkusen goal-
keeper Bernd Leno managed to divert
his point-blank shot into the corner.
While Hoffenheim wasted half a
dozen chances, Leverkusen did look
dangerous on the rare break. (AP)
ROME---Roma was both classy
and fortunate to beat Napoli 2-0
yesterday and match the best start
in Serie A history with its eighth
consecutive win. Miralem Pjanic
scored twice for the Giallorossi
First, the Bosnia midfielder
found the net four minutes into
first-half added time with a sub-
lime free kick that went over
Napoli s wall before dipping down
into the top corner. Then he added
a penalty in the 71st after Napoli
captain Paolo Cannavaro was
shown a red card for taking down
Marco Borriello inside the area,
leaving the visitors with 10 men.
Napoli wasted three close
chances. Goran Pandev failed to
finish with only the goalkeeper to
beat and Lorenzo Insigne and
Gokhan Inler each hit the post.
Former Napoli great Diego
Maradona was in attendance but
he had little to cheer for.
Roma matched Juventus, which
also won eight consecutive match-
es to start the 1985-86 and 1930-
31 seasons. The Bianconeri went
on to win the Serie A title on both
Juventus also won nine straight
in 2005-06 but its title that season
was stripped in the "calciopoli"
Roma moved five points ahead
of Napoli and Juventus, which vis-
its Fiorentina tomorrow.
Perhaps even more impressive
than its record is Roma s goal dif-
ferential, with 22 scored and one
Roma hasn t won the title since
The only negative moments for
Roma came when captain
Francesco Totti exited with an
apparent right thigh muscle prob-
lem after a half hour and Gervinho
went off with a similar injury in
the second half.
Napoli started with its standout
forward Gonzalo Higuain on the
bench with a minor injury and
Roma controlled the opening 20
Daniele De Rossi and Pjanic
threatened for Roma early on and
just as Napoli began to assert itself,
Totti went to the sideline.
Totti had his thigh massaged for
a few minutes but then decided
he couldn t come back on and
walked down into the changing
room as Borriello replaced him.
In the 35th, a through ball from
Insigne set up Pandev with only
Roma goalkeeper Morgan De Sanc-
tis to beat but the Macedonia strik-
er couldn t get his shot around De
Sanctis, who played for Napoli the
past four seasons. Despite De
Sanctis deflection, the ball still
trickled toward the net but De
Rossi cleared the danger just in
Ten minutes later, Napoli threat-
ened again when Insigne wasted
a great chance by hitting the out-
side of the post from five meters
Down at the other end, Gerv-
inho earned the foul that set up
the free kick for Pjanic s goal.
Napoli was again dangerous at
the start of the second half with
Inler hitting the outside of the post
with a long shot in the 49th.
De Rossi nearly doubled the lead
when his bouncing a header missed
in the 58th and Higuain replaced
Pandev in the 68th.
Two minutes after Higuain
came on, Pjanic pounded his
penalty into the back of the net
and Napoli didn t have the will ---
or time --- to recover from a two-
goal deficit. (AP)
MEXICO CITY---Miguel Herrera
was hired as the new Mexico coach
yesterday for two playoff games
next month against New Zealand,
with the winning team advancing
to next year s World Cup in Brazil.
Herrera replaces Victor Manuel
Vucetich, who coached only two
matches. The last was a 2-1 loss on
Tuesday against Costa Rica.
Herrera, who is leaving as coach
of Mexican club America, is Mexico s
fourth coach in just under two
months as the team struggles to
reach its sixth straight World Cup.
Mexican federation officials said
they would evaluate after the two
matches to decide if Herrera will
"This is a crisis situation we are
going through," said Justino Com-
pean, president of the Mexican foot-
ball federation. "Nobody planned for
this and nobody likes it. We are sorry
for our fans, we are saddened along
with our club owners, and we are
sorry for our sponsors."
Mexico was lucky to reach the
playoff. Panama missed out when it
lost to the United States 3-2 on
Tuesday after two stoppage-time
goals. Panama was leading 2-1 after
an 83rd-minute goal, a result that
would have eliminated Mexico from
Once the regional football power,
Mexico had a poor World Cup qual-
ifying campaign and managed only
11 points in 10 matches. It also played
badly four months ago in the Con-
federations Cup, a warm-up for the
The United States, Costa Rica and
Honduras claimed the three auto-
matic qualifying berths from the
Concacaf region, which takes in
North America, Central America and
Herrera is the eighth coach in the
last seven years, a sign of the insta-
bility surrounding Mexico s national
Jose Manuel De la Torre was fired
in early September and replaced with
interim coach Luis Fernando Tena.
He was replaced by Vuectich. (AP)
PARIS---Dario Cvitanich scored
the winning goal as Nice beat
Marseille 1-0 yesterday to go level
on points with third-place Lille
in the French league.
Cvitanich collected a through
ball from Mahamane Traore to
score from a tight angle in the
Nice is still undefeated at home
this season while Marseille suffered
its third straight defeat in all com-
petitions to be level with Nice and
Lille, four points behind leader
Monaco. Also, Toulouse beat Reims
2-1 to provisionally climb to sev-
Oscar Trejo gave Toulouse the
lead with a header in the 42nd
before Reims midfielder Prince
Oniangue equalized with a curling
shot in the 56th.
Toulouse forward Martin Braith-
waite converted a penalty in the
86th after Reims midfielder
Antoine Devaux received a red card
for fouling Clement Chantome.
Mid-table Reims stretched its
winless streak to seven games.
Today, it s: Paris Saint-Germain
vs. Bastia; Ajaccio vs. Nantes; Evian
vs. Guingamp; Montpellier vs. Lille;
and Rennes vs. Valenciennes.
Tomorrow, Monaco visits
Sochaux, Lyon hosts Bordeaux and
Saint-Etienne faces Lorient. (AP)
Hoffenheim loses to
Leverkusen on non-goal
Miguel Herrera hired
as new Mexico coach
Roma matches best
start in Serie A history
Nice stuns Marseille in French league
AS Roma's Miralem Pjanic of Bosnia
and Herzegovina scores from a
penalty kick during a Serie A
football match between AS Roma
and Napoli at Rome's Olympic
stadium, yesterday. Roma won 2-0.
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