1860 march proudly into the round three of the DFB pokal after a 3-0 away victory over Berliner AK. A Stoppelkamp brace and a second cup goal of the season for summer signing Ismael Blanco ensured no embarrassing upset in the capital. Fourth division Berliner AK remember, are the side that sent Bundesliga team TSG Hoffenheim crashing to a 4-0 defeat in the first round.
4,500 braved the cold weather to see a fairly even game at the Friedrich-Ludwig-Jahn-Stadion. Despite the flattering scoreline the home side were a good match for their second league counterparts but the noticeable difference between them was the composure in front of goal. The Lions were the more clinical, overpowering their hosts in the final third while Berlin wasted a number of very good chances of their own.
Quality showed and with a strong defensive line-up 'Sechzig' played with a confidence unbefitting of their recent form. Reiner Maurer was wary not to underestimate their giant-killing opponents and only made the subtlest of changes to the regular starting eleven.
It was a rare opportunity for reserve goalkeeper Timo Ochs to showcase his talent between the sticks and he showed that he is a very capable understudy for regular shotstopper Gabor Kiraly.
Also getting a first team start was Ismael Blanco. The Argentine has been limited to playing a bit-part role at the club this season, often coming into the game as a
second half substitute. Last night the Argentine got a full 90 minutes under his belt, something that will certainly help bring his match fitness up to standard.
After a good start by the hosts, it was the Lions that evenually broke the deadlock in the 38th minute. Moritz Stoppelkamp found space to run at the keeper and finished cooly after rounding him to slot the ball home. An expert finish with class and confidence stamped all over it. It was a goal that could be described as going against the run of play because Berlin were applying pressure and were giving Munich's defence some work to do.
The score stayed at 1-0 going into the half time break but after the restart it was Berlin that were eager to chase the game as they tried to claw back an equaliser. 'Sechzig' were equal to the threat though, and patiently waited until just after the hour mark to extend their lead. Stoppelkamp was on hand again. This time he calmed any lingering nerves for the Munich club with a superb low drive from 20 yards.
Greek international Gregoris Makos was given a 20 minute run out when he replaced Daniel Bierofka and with 10 minutes left on the clock Marin Tomasov also got to stretch his legs, replacing Benny Lauth who predictably exerted little of his undoubted talent and experience on the game.
To round off a solid performance, Blanco hooked in the final goal with less than a minute left on the clock. This time Stoppelkamp turned provider when he spotted his teammate lurking unmarked on the left-hand side of the penalty area. The pass across from the right-hand side of the box was inch perfect and Blanco gratefully tucked the ball home.
Reaching the next round of the German cup means a bonus of half a million euros for 1860 and that cash injection should ease some pressure and raise morale both in the dressing room and the board room.
Their next match is a tough league fixture at home to St. Pauli. The Munich Eye will have reporter Tony Mayger at the Allianz Arena to report on this important clash
between two of the biggest clubs in the division.
AK Berliner: Kisiel - Krstic, Teichmann, Gerlach, Altiparmak- Yigitoglu (72' N. Brandt), Siemund - Kruschke (62' Malinowski), Blazynski, Avcioglu (79' Makangu) - Cakmak
TSV1860 Munich: Ochs - Volz, Bülow, Vallori, Schindler - Halfar, Bierofka (71' Makos), Stahl (88' Nicu), Stoppelkamp - Lauth (79' Tomasov), Blanco
Goals: 1-0 Stoppelkamp (38'), 2-0 Stoppelkamp (62'), 3-0 Blanco (89')