The pressure won't really be on until next week, when the German league restarts after the winter break, but a number of Bundesliga teams were hoping to get off to a good start with test matches over the weekend.
Stadiums were mostly empty as fans wait for the season to start in earnest next week
League leader Bayern Munich showed they are still in top form with a 4:0 win against KFC Uerdingen. With the exception of Oliver Kahn, Zé Roberto and Mehmet Scholl, Bayern coach Felix Magath sent out his first string players to put on a show against the German regional league team.
But it was Markus Oellers and the two minutes he played for Uerdingen, not the goals from Michael Ballack, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Philipp Lahm, José Paolo Guerrero or even the penalty shot Uerdingen's Christian Knappmann failed missed, that had the fans talking after the match.
Oellers paid 2,688.05 euros ($3,261.95) in an auction before the season started for the chance to play in the match. Oellers even managed to dribble the ball against Bayern in his 120 seconds on the field.
Hamburg , Bremen draw one all
Hamburg and Bremen also played to a 1:1 tie when last met Dec. 18
While Bayern decimated the third-rate team, the German top flight's second place Hamburg chose a more difficult opponent in Werder Bremen, currently third in the league. The two teams played to a fair 1:1 draw in a match that proved neither of them should be looking forward to the season restarting.
Hamburg have their goalkeeper Stefan Wächter to thank for the tie, as he stopped good chances from Tim Borowski and Jurica Vranjes but couldn't match the German national team's Torsten Frings. Naohiro Takahara, however, equalized in the 61st minute on the wet and slippery pitch.
Nuremberg scored a surprise 5:2 win against Hertha Berlin. Excellent combinations and quick switches from defense to offense, along with a Berlin side that needed a long time to find their way around the field, helped lead Nuremberg to victory.
The regional league's TuS Koblenz also managed a surprise against first division team Eintracht Frankfurt with a 2:1 win in front of about 60 fans. Continually pushing forward, Frankfurt controlled the ball most of the game but could not get the deciding goals when they had the chance.
Dortmund still far from top form
Dortmund have a lot of work ahead of them before they get back on their feet
Testing their fitness against each other, Borussia Mönchengladbach and Borussia Dortmund were among the few Bundesliga teams who didn't play against lower division rivals over the weekend. Mönchengladbach were able to win the battle of the Borussias 1:4.
"We have a lot of work to do," Dortmund coach Bert van Marwijk admitted after the game. "I am not satisfied with this performance."
Second to last in the Bundesliga, MSV Duisburg, however, did choose an experienced rival in Artmedia Bratislava. And whatever the German team did over the winter break paid off in the 0:0 tie against the Slovakian Champions League participant.
Mihai Tararache and Marco Caligiuri both made their debut in the Duisburg midfield, but weren't able to play out any scoring chances for the home team before it meets Stuttgart next week.
Wolfsburg content with tie against Prague
Klaus Augenthaler was happy with his team's test match
Klaus Augenthaler gave 16 players a chance during Wolfsburg's trip to Slaiva Prague, but none was able to score the deciding goal in a 0:0 draw.
"It was a little problematic for us, because we are not a used to playing together," Augenthaler said. "There were some good phases, and for me the test was satisfactory."
A goal from Boubacar Sanogo in the 33rd minute put Kaiserslautern ahead of Switzerland's Yverdon-Sport FC in a match that tested Kaiserlautern's debutants Mathieu Beda and Jon Inge Höiland from the opening whistle.
Stuttgart win twice in mini tournament
Bayer Leverkusen squeaked out a 1:0 win in an uninspiring match against the third division's Fortuna Düsseldorf, thanks to goalie Jörg Butt, who blocked a Fortuna penalty shot in the 14th minute.
In two games that lasted just 45 minutes each, VfB Stuttgart tore apart SSV Reutlingen 6:0 after beating FC St. Gallen by a more modest 1:0, taking first place in the three-team tournament in Reutlingen.