Cup Triumph Rescues Bremen’s Season
Berlin. Mesut Oezil scored in the second half on Saturday to give Werder Bremen its sixth German Cup title with a 1-0 victory over Bayer Leverkusen.
Werder playmaker Diego, playing in his last game before moving to Juventus, released Oezil, whose shot from a sharp angle took a slight deflection off Manuel Friedrich and beat goalkeeper Rene Adler in the 58th minute.
Bremen won the second of its two finals of the season, losing the UEFA Cup final 10 days ago to Shakhtar Donetsk 2-1, and rescued a season that went badly in the Bundesliga, where it finished only 10th.
“The better team won,” Werder midfielder Torsten Frings said. “We didn’t have a good Bundesliga campaign, but we ended the season with a title.”
Bremen dominated the first half and Adler had to make several saves to keep his team from falling behind.
On the other side, Leverkusen had a good chance when Renato Augusto charged down the right flank and fed Patrick Helmes, who mistimed his shot.
Adler was tested by a shot from Sebastian Proedl after six minutes and made a good save from Hugo Almeida. Later, Adler could not hold a free kick from Naldo and Diego pounced on the loose ball, but the goalkeeper redeemed himself by making the stop.
The goalkeeper’s best save came in the 25th, after Naldo connected with a free kick from Diego but Adler made a reflex save on the line.
Leverkusen showed more ambition in the second half and had several chances that it could not convert.
Werder captain Frank Baumann lifted the trophy after playing the last game of his career.
It may have been the last match in charge for Leverkusen’s first-year coach Bruno Labbadia, who criticized the club’s front office in an interview that appeared on the day of the final.