Reuters Soccer Blog
World Soccer views and news
Big deal says Bayer Leverkusen coach Jupp Heynckes after their 3-2 loss to Nuremberg on Sunday. He is quick to reject any of the tags that Leverkusen have had to deal with for much of the past 15 years, like “Neverkusen” and “Vizekusen”.
“That is irritating, but I cannot defend myself against such voices,” Heynckes said of the nicknames that are now more frequently used in the media following the first defeat.
“What exactly happened here?”, he told reporters on Monday. “Nothing. We were top of the table until the 24th matchday and then we just lost one match because we were not well positioned in our defence.”
The qualities of the young Leverkusen team were already evident last season. Under Bruno Labbadia, they were exciting to watch for the first half of the campaign but crumbled after the winter break to end up in ninth.
New boss Jupp Heynckes seems to be succeeding where Labbadia failed.
Undefeated and boasting the league’s best attack and defence, they have every right to dream of the Bundesliga title that has eluded them for so long.