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FOOTBALL

Bayern goalkeeper takes blame for Cologne draw

Goalkeeper Hans-Jörg Butt admitted he was to blame as Bundesliga leaders Bayern Munich needed a second-half equaliser to take a point from Saturday's 1-1 draw with Cologne.

Bayern goalkeeper takes blame for Cologne draw
Photo: DPA

Bayern went behind on 32 minutes when Cologne’s ex-Munich striker Lukas Podolski drilled in an indirect free-kick which flew into the top left-hand corner of the net after deflecting off Butt’s hands.

Podolski’s Germany teammate Bastian Schweinsteiger hit a second-half equaliser on 58 minutes to make sure Munich left Cologne with at least a point, but Butt said the guests should not have conceded the equaliser.

“The ball wobbled (in mid-air) when we went 1-0 down, but I should have been able to hold on to it,” said the 35-year-old. “We gave away the two points in the first-half. We hardly created any chances and left ourselves with work to do at the back. In the second-half, we could still have won the game.”

Bayern coach Louis van Gaal, whose team is now unbeaten since November, said his side had not created their own luck. “We played the way we wanted to in the first 20 minutes,” said the Dutchman. “After that, we did too much in midfield where there were many Cologne

players and we were not very intelligent.”

“You have to create your own luck from time to time and we didn’t do that for the first 30 minutes,” the veteran coach said.

Bayern play Fiorentina in the second leg leg of their last 16 Champions League tie on Tuesday where they hold a 2-1 advantage from the earlier game in Munich.

But goal-scorer Schweinsteiger admitted they would have faced the trip to Italy with more confidence had they defeated Cologne. “We did not create enough chances to beat Cologne,” said the Germany midfielder.

“We did not play as simply as we wanted to and we made a few mistakes. We knew Cologne would build a brick wall for us to break down and so it proved. But we were good enough to take the three points and should have done so,” he said.

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MUNICH

Four injured as WWII bomb explodes near Munich train station

Four people were injured, one of them seriously, when a World War II bomb exploded at a building site near Munich's main train station on Wednesday, emergency services said.

Smoke rises after the WWII bomb exploded on a building site in Munich.
Smoke rises after the WWII bomb exploded on a building site in Munich. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Privat

Construction workers had been drilling into the ground when the bomb exploded, a spokesman for the fire department said in a statement.

The blast was heard several kilometres away and scattered debris hundreds of metres, according to local media reports.

Images showed a plume of smoke rising directly next to the train tracks.

Bavaria interior minister Joachim Herrmann told Bild that the whole area was being searched.

Deutsche Bahn suspended its services on the affected lines in the afternoon.

Although trains started up again from 3pm, the rail operator said there would still be delays and cancellations to long-distance and local travel in the Munich area until evening. 

According to the fire service, the explosion happened near a bridge that must be passed by all trains travelling to or from the station.

The exact cause of the explosion is unclear, police said. So far, there are no indications of a criminal act.

WWII bombs are common in Germany

Some 75 years after the war, Germany remains littered with unexploded ordnance, often uncovered during construction work.

READ ALSO: What you need to know about WWII bomb disposals in Germany

However, most bombs are defused by experts before they explode.

Last year, seven World War II bombs were found on the future location of Tesla’s first European factory, just outside Berlin.

Sizeable bombs were also defused in Cologne and Dortmund last year.

In 2017, the discovery of a 1.4-tonne bomb in Frankfurt prompted the evacuation of 65,000 people — the largest such operation since the end of the war in Europe in 1945.

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