Regionalist tensions in Spain, murderously cold weather and French nuclear stroppiness are all important enough in their way, I suppose, but let’s not lose sight of what truly matters: Bayern Munich move ahead to the semi-finals of the DFB Cup. It will be scant comfort to Tobias, I fear, that his boys from Mainz 05 punched way above their weight, owning the pitch during the first part of the match and making Bayern worry down to the very last minutes of extra time. Special mention goes to second-string Mainz keeper Christian Wetklo, who had no reason to feel embarrassed standing on the other end of the pitch from Oliver Kahn.
Germany’s other national keeper and his Highbury comrades didn’t fair as well in their own face-off against an upstart promotee, taking a long walk off Wigan pier and out of the League Cup. But the real nailbiter is tonight in Hamburg, where piratical misfits FC St. Pauli of the northern regional league take on Bundesliga power club Werder Bremen. Come on Pauli!
UPDATE: And damned if on Pauli didn’t come! 3:1 against mighty, mighty Werder; well done the lads!