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Donovan does it again, scores two more for Bayern

Landon Donovan Bayern 3 (Getty)

Landon Donovan can't stop scoring.

Yes, it is still the pre-season, but Donovan added two goals and an assist to his growing tally, starring in Bayern Munich's 5-0 pasting of Mainz 05 on Wednesday. The two goals give Donovan four in five pre-season matches for Bayern.

Here are both Donovan's goals:

Even the staunchest Donovan hater has to start giving the guy some credit. He looks confident, in form and ready to do some damage during his loan, a loan that is looking more and more likely to become a permanent move.

What do you think of Donovan's latest performance? Are you starting to become a believer? Does it make you proud as an American to see him doing so well (even in pre-season)? Is Donovan's recent form making you look more and more forward to the USA- Mexico World Cup qualifier? Are you trying to figure out how Chad Marshall couldn't get a deal with Mainz?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. Landon has been regarded as not being able to play in the top flight european leagues, such as the bundesliga. However, he is not the same teenager as when he was at leverkusen. National team experience helped him develop his football IQ over the past five years and he works and trains very hard. Plus hes fast and is a fairly good passer of the ball. He can also finish. If he maintains high level of confidence with Toni and Ribery I believe he has the right chemistry this time to really show the critics out there he deserves to be amongst considered among great interntational players.

  2. This is great news. I know there are a lot of people who will never give Landon respect, but any USMNT fan with half a brain can see that he’s our best outfield player, regardless of how his last trip to Europe went. All he can do is fight for a spot and take the opportunities he’s given, and he has. Keep it up!

  3. I HATE Landy Cakes…Its nice to see him actually scoring goals that aren’t PK’s. I am curious to see what he can do in games that count…I
    I’ll just have to keep checking in on him I guess.

  4. I’ve been following Donovan since 2002. He’s a great player and he deserves to be over seas. We’ll miss him in the states, but Germany is where he should be at. So what if its mid-season, he’s proving to everyone he belongs where he is, he’s fitting in rather nicely. And once the season starts again at the end of the month he’s going to prove all the haters wrong. Landon Donovan is an outstanding player. Don’t hate.

  5. personally I’ve never really been a huge Donovan fan since he moved into the “leadership” role for the Nats. He always spoke too much and showed up too little for my taste. While I never begrudged him his move back to the MLS (can’t play if you’re not comfortable) I did see it as a sign of mentally not being ready to really be the focal point of our team. BUT NOW what I see is Donovan being a true professional (thank you David Beckham) and talking less than he’s working. He’s showing up and grabbing his opportunities. WHO CARES if these are only “pre(you mean mid?)season” games? These are the opportunities he’s being given and he’s doing his part to take advantage of that. For this I’m proud of him and will root for him to succeed.

  6. Even the detriot lions went undefeated in the preseason. The goals he scored heree are not likely to be repeated in the Bundesliga 1.

  7. I am glad to see Donovan doing well in Germany. Much of his recent success has to do with growing up. At age 26, he probably realizes that his career is about half over. It’s time to focus. He allowed himself to be manipulated by some of the MLS honchos and he was not better off for the effort. He has the skills and hopefully he now is finding the desire.

  8. NoName has _NO CLUE_… a header that hit sidenet – top corner is by no way / shape / form executed by luck. If you’d ever played the game or trained [as i have in both Germany and Holland] this is the expected outcome.

  9. As much as I want to see him succeed, I’m gonna miss watching him here in the US (he has been on top form as of late and entertaining to watch). I’m so torn.

  10. @madmax-

    I wonder if Marshall’s lingering injury had anything to do with Mainz lack of injury? They probably needed someone to contribute right away. He came into USMNT camp with the injury and it ended up sending him home eventually.

  11. If these are useless friendlies, a piece of cake, and Donovan is a fraud…..then Toni and Klose should be scoring nine a game right? Give it up. I have always been a Donovan basher, but I will give credit where credit is due. As to comparing him to Dos Santos……he is a kid with a lot of maturing to do. Donovan is an adult and it’s an apples to oranges sort of thing.

  12. A free header and a howler by the keeper? Hardly proof that he belongs. I’m rooting for him, and it’s tough to tell how he’s doing based on a minute of video, but I can’t get enthusiastic until he gets it done outside of CONCACAF.

    He’s has great speed and is a very hard worker but is not a clinical finisher, which he’ll need to be at that level. Personally, I’d like to see him moved to the right side so he can run at people, but I’m not sure he has the touch to provide service.

  13. If Donovan beat 6 men on the way to goal but then put it past the post, it would count as a miss. He isn’t going to be evaluated on whether his goals were “lucky” or “undeserved” or even “artistic”. Gerd Muller, and for that matter,Klinsmann, scored many garbage goals that were tap ins or lucky bounces or just plain bad goalkeeping. But they all count.

    As for it being exhibition season, do you really think any of those guys are relaxed and thinking the managment knows their worth so they will save it for the real season? Then you know nothing of how competitive the Bundesliga is. You win the right to get on the field in training and in these kind of exhibitions.

  14. “only give Landy credit when he whoops that a$$ in the World Cup. Until then, I’m still drinking haterade!” inkedAG

    Dear AG,

    The WC is a short tournament where it is possible to excel over the course of a couple of games. Football is full of World Cup stars who turned out to be busts during regular league play.

    If Donovan can make it as a regular for Bayern, that would be a far greater accomplishment. It’s still very early yet though. These goals may help get him on the team but are no guarantee of anything else. If you are a fan of the USMNT why bother hating Donovan? He is, by quite a long shot, the best US player out there. You don’t see big teams lining up for Dempsey’s signature do you?

  15. No problem Nicole. I like your timely spot reports as well. Can only imagine you reporting along the touchline for US soccer someday:-)^^

    Although I only play in the B Division of the Landesliga ergo “bierliga,” I am living the dream at 40+ just being in the land of FuSball. You should come over and attend a Bayern match.

    Ives – Is this a record for number of comments on one of your blogs? Landon certainly seems to be getting the spotlight each and every time you throw us a Landon line.

  16. @Posted by: NONAME | January 22, 2009 at 06:50 PM

    Are you retarded or are you serious (and thus retarded)?

    The first one was a perfectly executed header that would bring a tear to McBrides eye. The second looked like it crossed but I’ll conceded there is no ‘definitive’ angle on that one.

    @Posted by: Landon Donovan plays like an American | January 23, 2009 at 02:42 PM

    You basically described the entire British philosophy of football in criticizing how Landon plays then suggested he play like a Brit.

    He has done all the things you ‘wish’ he could do but obviously have not see a great deal of his matches. He really is better than most people give him credit for.

  17. IT’S NOT PRE-SEASON!!!! It’s the WINTER BREAK for the Bundesliga (but all the teams keep playing in DFB matches, CL/UEFA and friendlies in warmer places). For him it may be ‘pre-season-ish’ since he hadn’t played in 4 months and this would be his pre-season, but everyone he’s playing against have been conditioned and PLAYING since September.

    If anything it’s more impressive that he is doing this against people who are fully fit and have been playing for months already.

    I’m not saying he’s going to be Gerd Müller but he’s doing really well right now.

  18. Nicole – I made another big assumption and bought the Champions League jersey (the other jerseys wouldn’t have looked as good on me).

    I called world soccer shop and had them just add his name and number to the back – if the letter and number font are different than what Bayern uses, I sure can’t tell. It was a lot cheaper than ordering it from the Bayern site – they wanted like 20EU for shipping to the US.

  19. Der Amerikan Kaiser, thanks for your report from being at the game. Always love to read them.

    To those saying it’s only friendlies. Well, Landon’s teammates are playing against the same competition and have the opportunity to score just like him…but they’re not.

    Joe Quake – I’m jealous! I want a jersey. Did you get the home or away?

    Funny, I read the German message boards (through some google translation) and the fans have really taken to landon – they love his attitude, his speed and go-to-goal mentality, and his sweet touches on the ball, how he finds his teammates. They are particularly enthralled with the 2 headers he scored (which they said were amazingly beautiful and took a tremendous amount of skill) to be such a little guy.

  20. OK. Enough with the “Landycakes” as some of you folks call him, or as “US-boy” as the average German would call an American in Die Bundesliga.

    The word on the streets of Munchen, thanks to Bechkam and Posh, is that Landon is now known as “Bayerns Spice Boy.”

  21. I may have jumped the gun, but I have a LD Bayern jersey in my closet right now. Even if he only plays 20 minutes and does nothing but pass well, I am going to enjoy watching him play the next few weeks and hopefully months/years.

  22. I hated on him. However, he is winning me over. I always knew he had skill, that is why I hated on him for not going after it in Europe. I hope MLS doesn’t f him over with the transfer amount.

  23. Landon Donovan plays like an American. He’s our best (maybe!), but it all seems far too linear for my thinking. Linear is simply too easy for a sophisticated team to shut down or take apart.

    On the other hand the only way to progress beyond where one is to immerse oneself in the better.

    I want Landon to succeed, but I’d like to see him score goals as well as Rory Dunlap did for Stoke the other day. Can Landon beat 2 defenders and the keeper? Landon’s our Robinho, but he’s no Robinho. Most pros in Europe (including defenders) can make a straight ahead opportunity – it takes the finest touch, intuition, wit & guile to make a real impact up front. I hope Landon is aiming for that.

    But congrats to Landon, finding the back of the net is always sweet!

  24. Josh – Will keep you posted. I will train down to Stuttgart and Daimler-Benz Stadion next Tuesday after work. Stuttgart is always a great atmosphere and a BIG FRAPPEN Bayer-Scwabien Krieg. Ya do know Klinsmann was a Stuttgart product before he went to Bayern, right?

    I was shocked I could still get tickets a few weeks ago. AUF GEHTS BAYERN!

    But you are going down.

  25. Keep the fire burning Landon!

    The match was not a DFP Pokal match, rather the last of 4 friendlies and donations went to the Mainz cathedral.

    MikeD you’r right. Two very well-played matches against the Top two 2BL sides who deserve promotion to the BL (sorry BWL-not 1860 this year).

    After attending both matches, Donovan clearly connects better with Klose than he does with Toni given some of the looks I have seen him give Toni after failed passing opportunities. The difference between Toni and Klose is that Klose is more about the Team than Toni who is more worried about the “me” in team. For 30 minutes, Donovan once again played well both on and off the ball, creating chances and playing unselfishly. Again, I asked some Bayern fans (these are real no-kidding, die-hard Bayern fans from Germany and some GI like me) what they thought Bayern should do with landon, “buy or pass?” and the resounding answer was BUY BUY BUY!

    In an interview on german t.v today, Donovan said he has been pleased with the support that Klose has provided him since his arrival. Ya think Klinsmann might have had something to do with that Sturmer (Striker) mentorship. If you don’t, think again. Klinsmann is not only a good leader, he is a good FuSball psychologist

    By the end of February, provided Donovan performs well, not only will Bayern buy Donovan, but Toni will begin to fall out of favor and be replaced by Donovan by the beginning of April.

    Keep your head in the game Landon!

  26. Landycakes? I thought that we had agreed that it was going to be Landykuchen from here on out!

    I think it’s great that Landon showing well in these non-league games. We all know there would be even more bitching it Landon was playing and not scoring.

    In my mind, the real concern is will he be able to do the same as a supersub in Bundesliga matches. If he starts, I’d have no doubts in his ability to dent the twine, but if he doesn’t, finding the score sheet may be a little more difficult. Hopefully recent results are an indicator of what’s to come.

  27. NONAME,

    The first goal was anything but luck, and the second one DEFINITELY crossed the line. Mindless criticism…always a plus.

  28. “Klinsy is happy and as of today his loan is going well. The only opinion that matters at the end of the day is Klinsy’s. He says the kid can do it and he is giving him a chance.”

    Actually, anyone who follows German soccer and understands German will tell you that that, unfortunately, is not how things work at Bayern. Klinsmann is one voice in a complex chorus that includes Höneß, Rummenigge, and Beckenbauer…


    that first goal was one of the best headers i’ve seen in a while. that was like as upper 90 as you can get.

  30. Sorry folks. I’m happy for him too. But take a close look at the 2nd goal from the goal camera. The shot deflects off Toni’s ass. You can see as it comes off Landy’s foot it is going up to the right, hits Toni and deflects left. Further, Toni is initially blocking the keepers view of the shot. These two things are enough to throw the keeper off and why he looked inept.

  31. It was a friendly not a DFB Cup match. Bayern plays their DFB Cup match against Vfb Stuttgart on 1/27 at Stuttgart. I am a big Stuttgart fan so I hope Landon scores in the game but Bayern loses.


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