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Bayern Suffer Nine-Year Low In Shock Loss, Slip Eight Points Off Title Pace

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Bayern Munich slumped to a shock 3-2 loss at lowly Bochum on Sunday, suffering a third successive defeat for the first time since 2015 and leaving them eight points behind Bayer Leverkusen in the Bundesliga title race.

The result followed a 3-0 league defeat to Leverkusen last weekend and a 1-0 loss against Lazio in the Champions League as coach Thomas Tuchel came under renewed pressure.

Tuchel was bullish after the match, saying “the loss today wasn’t justified. We were extremely unlucky.”

Bayern were also reduced to 10 men with 13 minutes remaining when Dayot Upamecano elbowed Kevin Stoeger in the box, picking up a second yellow, giving away a penalty and seeing red for the second match in a row.

Stoeger blasted the penalty past Manuel Neuer to give Bochum a 3-1 lead.

Harry Kane scored with three minutes remaining to get Bayern back into the match and even had a chance to equalise late, but directed a tame header straight at Bochum goalkeeper Manuel Riemann.

Bayern had beaten Bochum 7-0 in three of their past five meetings and the visitors scored early, Jamal Musiala blasting in after 14 minutes.

It was the German champions’ first goal in over three hours of football.

Kane had a chance shortly after when one-on-one with Riemann but skied his shot into the stands.

Tuchel lamented his side’s wastefulness in attack, telling DAZN “we had more than enough high-quality chances which those guys would normally put away.”

The home side absorbed waves of Bayern pressure before Takuma Asano levelled after 38 minutes, shooting a low shot past Neuer on a counter attack.

Bayern fell behind just six minutes later, Keven Schlotterbeck heading in a corner.

The visitors turned the screws early in the second-half but the match was delayed for 12 minutes by fan protests against the Bundesliga’s investment plan, after which Bochum held their own against the German giants.

With just over 10 minutes remaining, Upamecano clashed with Stoeger contesting a corner and was sent off.

In teeming rain, Stoeger hit his penalty low and hard to the right, past Neuer’s outstretched hand.

Bayern’s teenage forward Mathys Tel set up Kane after 87 minutes, getting Bayern back into the match but then Kane wasted a golden chance to seize a last-gasp point.

Stoeger said: “It’s an enormous relief. We thought we could get a point and we got three.”

“I think all of Bochum is proud of the performance we delivered.”

Bochum coach Thomas Letsch added: “To win against Bayern is especially nice, given they’re a team stacked with talent.”

– Freiburg, Frankfurt draw –
Earlier on Sunday, Freiburg forward Michael Gregoritsch scored in the last minute to snatch his side a 3-3 draw with Eintracht Frankfurt.

Two goals from Ansgar Knauff, both set up by the impressive Omar Marmoush, who also got on the scoresheet, had Frankfurt on course for three points.

The visitors however failed to clear a corner and the 1.93-metre-tall Gregoritsch headed past Kevin Trapp to level the scores for Freiburg for the third and final time.

A frustrated Trapp told DAZN “we’re shooting ourselves in the foot”.

“It went back and forth, which is a shame for us. We could have taken more out of it.”

Frankfurt’s Marmoush scored first, but Freiburg’s Ritsu Doan hit back just three minutes later on the half-hour mark.

Marmoush’s superb pass allowed Knauff to score on the counter but the match was level again by half-time thanks to a penalty from Italy midfielder Vincenzo Grifo.

Knauff again put Frankfurt in front after 72 minutes before Gregoritsch came to the rescue.

In another match interrupted as fans threw objects on the pitch, Knauff then saved Frankfurt in the ninth minute of added time when he cleared a bouncing ball off the line.

The point moves Frankfurt four clear of Werder Bremen in sixth-place, the last European spot.

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Transfer: I want to play for a bigger club – Nwabali hints at next move

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Super Eagles goalkeeper, Stanley Nwabali, has dropped the biggest hint that he could leave Chippa United this summer.

Nwabali burst onto the scene at the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations in January this year.

The 27-year-old goalkeeper finished the competition with four clean sheets in seven appearances.

He also made two penalty saves in the shoot-out against South Africa in the quarterfinals.

This season, Nwabali has kept 11 clean sheets for Chippa United in 26 appearances.

Following his impressive performances, Nwabali has become a target for clubs abroad.

Saudi Pro League club Al Ettifaq, English Championship side Queens Park Rangers, and South African side Kaizer Chiefs have all been linked.

Following the final game of the season – a 2-0 defeat to Orlando Pirate – Nwabali dropped a hint on his future.

“Well, everyone would love to leave because when you are in some position, you need to grow,” said Nwabali.

“Like everyone in my position, I would like to grow more. I’m talking about clubs higher than this [bigger than Chippa United] because I have been giving my all to my club this season.

“I just wish to have another challenge at some other place,” Nwabali said.

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Just in: 2024-2025 Premier league start date revealed

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The 2024-2025 English Premier League campaign will commence 90 days after the 2023-2024 season ended in a historic way as Manchester City became the first side to win four Premier League titles in a row.

This newspaper platform can confirm that the 2024-2025 Premier League season will kick off on the weekend of August 17 and 18, 2024.

The forthcoming season will feature one Bank Holiday matchweek, 33 weekends of Premier League games, and four midweek rounds of league games.

In the forthcoming season, the Premier League plans to arrange the games in such a way that no club plays within 60 hours of another match. This is expected to prevent the “congested schedule across Christmas and New Year”.

Unlike last season, there won’t be games on the eve of Christmas (December 24) during the 2024-2025 Premier League season.

The forthcoming season is expected to end on Sunday, May 25, 2025, and just like last season, all the games will have the same kickoff time.

As for the 2024-2025 Premier League fixtures, the fixtures and kick-off time of all 20 clubs (380 fixtures in total) are expected to be released at 9 a.m. (UK time) on Tuesday, June 18.

Note that three clubs have been promoted to the Premier League ahead of the 2024-2025 season. The newly promoted clubs are Leicester City, Ipswich Town, and Southampton.

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Onyedika wins Belgian League title with Club Brugge

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Nigeria midfielder Raphael Onyedika has won the Belgian Pro League title with Club Brugge.

Club Brugge were held to a 0-0 draw by local rivals Cercle Brugge in their final game of the season on Sunday night.

Onyedika featured for 90 minutes in the game.

It was his 30th league game of the season for Club Brugge and he has scored three goals.

The 23-year-old also won the league title during his time with FC Midtylland in Denmark.

Nicky Hayen’s side finished the Championship playoff with 50 points, a point ahead of Union St. Gilloise.

It was the Blue and White’s 19th league title.

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