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The World Seen With  A Football Fan's Eye

HSV Hamburg

27.11.2012 1.BUNDESLIGA 2012/2013
HSV Hamburg - Schalke 04 3:1

According to the observers of the match, the best performance of HSV in the season so far. Indeed, the chances for a win over Schalke 04 were close to zero. It is again the Gelsenkirchen team who aspire to the upper ranks in the Bundesliga table thus ensuring appearances in either Champions (obviously preferred) or Europe’s League respectively. Huntelaar and Co. came to Hamburg to harvest three points, considered almost given. All in all, they did not perform badly and still had to swallow the taste of defeat – which only confirms the beauty of football and the reason for it being so much loved by billions of people across the world. All is theoretically clear before the game and all cards tossed and given away and still, somebody will leave the table disappointed, or with a strong feeling of having been cheated.
The kick off brought surprising silence in the fans sectors, both hosts and guests behaved as if there was no kick off. This lasted precisely 12 minutes and 12 seconds thus alluding to 12th December – the date of a meeting in Frankfurt with 36 professional Bundesliga clubs present to discuss “fans freedoms” which – according to some insights – were supposed to be dramatically limited. It was not fully clear to me what the point exactly was however the protest was supported by a vast majority of the German supporters clubs.
Rafael van der Vaart appeared the Great Absent One, as a result of an injury he suffered from in the previous match. The Dutch international was at the stadium though and was watching his team mates performance from one of the VIP lounges which he rented for the entire season (100 thousand Euros) shortly before. A word of mouth says Rafael has got a big family and several good friends whose one the greatest passions is (surprise, surprise) football. HSV played extremely cautiously in the rear line, skillfully directed by the team’s captain Westermann. A 22-year old Maximilian Beister was actively annoying the Schalke 04 defenders and, having scored an impressive goal, was just about to fly out. Artjoms Rudnevs was the other front man of HSV (known from his appearance in Ekstraklasa to the Polish audience). He made it 2:0 however my personal view is that Bundesliga is not the right shoe size for the Latvian player and he is likely to soon depart for another challenge. A superb performance by Rene Adler in the goal. He almost saved the penalty (Huntelaar made it to the net only at the second attempt) and fascinated the Hamburg audience with his outstanding interventions in the closing phase of the match. The crowds were shouting his name long after the final whistle.
The break created an opportunity to enjoy some good memories from the past – Horst Hrubesch, the legendary striker of HSV was kind enough to step into the pitch and wave towards the audience. He is one of the players never to be forgotten, not only because his goal hunting instinct but also because his face – he could easily back up the “Elm Street” movie's main character. Hamburger Sport Verein turned 125 years old in 2012. It is unlikely for the football team to celebrate any big trophies this season however I wish the club for the best, and this also because quite a numerous group of Polish players proudly wearing the clubs colors in the past: Okoński, Furtok, Matysik, Cyroń, Saganowski, Wojtala, Dembiński. The first two enjoyed a truly excellent time in Hamburg and I bet that many local supporters do still have pretty good memories of their performance even these days.