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Bayern suffer another blow as they lose their Cup crown

SoccerNews in Bundesliga 4 Mar 2009

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Bayern Munich’s desperate recent domestic form continued on Wednesday as the defending German Cup holders were eliminated from the competition as the equally out-of-form Bayer Leverkusen beat them 4-2 in their quarter-final clash.

Bayern, who have lost two and drawn one of their last three league matches, found themselves 3-0 down after Bayer scored three goals in 16 second-half minutes and with just 20 minutes remaining.

Jurgen Klinsmann’s side fought back to make it 3-2 with two goals in the next four minutes but Bayer ensured they progressed with a goal in the second minute of time added on.

Bayer’s Swiss international Tranquillo Barnetta had opened the scoring in the 54th minute with a superb shot and they quickly doubled their advantage through a header by Arturo Vidal from a corner.

When Patrick Helmes added a third it looked game over for Bayern, who had won four of the last six editions of the Cup.

However at least in attack they showed some resilience as Brazilian defender Lucio pounced to take advantage of a poor punch by German international ‘keeper Rene Adler to make it 3-1 and then Bayer’s nerves were set truly on edge as two minutes later Miroslav Klose scored following a terrific pass by Franck Ribery.

Despite this it was too little too late as Bayer – with three defeats, a draw and a win in their last five matches – added a deserved fourth.

Earlier on Wednesday both Hamburg and Werder Bremen had moved through to the semi-finals – Hamburg beating struggling Second Division Wiesbaden 2-1 while Werder Bremen were impressive 5-2 winners over VfL Wolfsburg.

Brazilian star Diego and Peruvian veteran Claudio Pizarro were the stars of the show for Werder as they grabbed a brace apiece.

Schalke 04’s disappointing season continued on Tuesday as they were knocked out of the German Cup 1-0 by Second Division Mainz in their quarter-final clash.

An 88th minute goal by Burkina Faso’s Aristide Bance was enough to end four-time Cup winners Schalke’s interest in the competition and send Mainz – who are second in their division – into the semi-finals for the first time in their history.

Schalke’s exit heaps the pressure on their Dutch coach Fred Rutten as they are eighth in the league, nine points adrift of leaders Hertha Berlin.

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