'The Hand of Neuer' secures the title in Bremen
The "Hand of God" is well known in world football and forever linked with the legendary moment the peerless Diego Maradona scored for Argentina in the 1986 World Cup quarter-final against England. In Munich, however, it is more common to refer to the "Hand of Neuer". The hand that secured FC Bayern the league title with games to spare. It was a remarkable save that Manuel Neuer made on Matchday 32 last season to scoop the ball just out of the corner to make sure of the 1-0 win against Werder Bremen in the 90th minute - a save that saw Bayern secure their 8th league title in a row.
It was the last minute at Bremen's Weserstadion and the home team delivered the ball into the Bayern penalty area one last time. When Yuya Osako rose to head the ball towards the far post, some were already primed to see the ball bulge in the back of the net. However, Neuer threw himself to his right and turned the ball away. Bayern threw up their arms and celebrated their captain. They'd retained their title again.
A repeat of events on Saturday?
While Maradona's "Hand of God" was only a one-off occurrence, Neuer uses his time and time again - especially in games against Bremen. In their first meeting this season, the Germany goalkeeper blocked Josh Sargent's attempt from around six yards with a brilliant foot reflex in the 16th minute. The world's best goalkeeper was again quick to scrape the ball out of the corner when Ludwig Augustinsson followed up from almost 12 yards. There's hardly another goalkeeper in the world that could keep those shots out. At the weekend, Bayern will meet Werder again in Bremen, where the "Hand of Neuer" is a topic of particular fear.
In the "Looking back" section, fcbayern.com presents finds from the photo archive. Among them is a very unique FCB goalkeeper: