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Cologne come from behind to stun Bayern

Bayern Munich captain Philipp Lahm admitted Cologne's shock 3-2 win over the defending champions was a bitter defeat to swallow as the hosts came from 2-0 down to floor the Bavarian giants.

Cologne come from behind to stun Bayern
Photo: DPA

“It hurts,” said Lahm after Saturday’s defeat in Cologne left Bayern fifth in the league and 15 points behind leaders Dortmund. “We’re making life difficult for ourselves. We’re making too many mistakes in our build-up play, and our tackling wasn’t aggressive enough.”

“We made it much too easy for Cologne,” he added. “Yet again, we’ve failed to perform at the start of the second half, failed to carry on where we’ve left off in the first half.”

“Yet again, we’ve fallen asleep for the first 20 minutes of the second half and carelessly thrown away vital points. We wanted to set off on a long winning run, but it’s evaded us again.”

Bayern were cruising after striker Mario Gomez and midfielder Hamit Altintop scored first-half goals to leave Munich 2-0 up at the break.

But the champions’ recent run of seven wins in eight games came to a shuddering halt as Cologne fought back. A capacity 50,000-strong crowd saw midfielder Christian Clemens and striker Milivoje Novakovic haul the home side back into the game with two goals in the first 15 minutes after the restart.

Novakovic then scored the winning goal with a superb effort with a quarter of an hour remaining.

Incredibly, this was Cologne’s fifth consecutive game against Bayern without defeat and Munich coach Louis van Gaal was left fuming as he accused his side of throwing the game away.

“It’s unbelievable,” said the Dutchman. “It’s the fourth or fifth time we’ve thrown a match away. We’ve missed a huge chance today, because all our rivals have lost, with the exception of Hanover.”

“Two goals should normally be enough, but we failed to keep our concentration for the full 90 minutes.”

For home captain and Germany midfielder Lukas Podolski, who returned to Cologne in 2009 after an unhappy spell at Bayern, it was a victory to savour.

“We saw a completely different Cologne from the start of the second half, with our fantastic fans behind us,” he said. “The way we came from behind to win was sensational.”

AFP/bk

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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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