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2. Bundesliga Update - Matchday 7

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Separation At The Top and Bottom

VfB Stuttgart - SpVgg Greuther Fürth Photo by Thomas Kienzle/picture alliance via Getty Images

Gaps have begun to open up at the top and bottom of the 2. Bundesliga table. Here are the results from Matchday 7:

Heidenheim 1 – Darmstadt 0

Heidenheim scored their second consecutive league win by beating Darmstadt at the Voith-Arena on Friday evening.

Both sides were well organized in defense out of the gate, which resulted in relatively few chances in the first half. Darmstadt winger Tim Skarke had the best chance of the half, but his shot from a tight angle was well saved by Kevin Müller, which meant that the sides went into the half knotted at 0.

The hosts seemed to grow into the match as the second half began and it was Robert Leipertz who scored the opening goal on 59 minutes. Club captain Marc Schnatterer found the onrushing Leipertz in the box and his quick shot wrong-footed Darmstadt keeper Florian Stritzel to give Heidenheim the lead.

The remainder of the match was Darmstadt pushing for an equalizer while Heidenheim tried to see the match out. Serdar Dursun came within centimeters of tying the match in the 76th minute and substitute Ognjen Ožegović hit the crossbar two minutes before stoppage time. Despite the visitor’s best efforts, Heidenheim saw out the match and took the 3 points, moving them up to 4th in the table.

Hannover 2 – Holstein Kiel 1

Visiting Hannover took their first league win in 4 tries and consigned hosts Kiel to their third loss over the same stretch as they ran out 2-1 winners at the Holstein-Stadion.

In a back-and-forth affair, both sides ended up with identical shots (10), shots on goal (3), cards (2 each), and almost identical possession percentage (52%-48% in favor of Hannover).

In a first half that featured relatively few chances, it was Die Roten who struck first in the 43rd minute. Kiel keeper Ioannis Gelios couldn’t clear Miiko Albornoz’s cross from his area and ex-Dortmund academy grad Marvin Ducksch reacted fastest to head the ball into the net. Cedric Teuchert doubled Hannover’s lead in the 52nd minute, when he latched onto long ball from Ducksch, took a touch, and then fired a brilliant strike into the top corner.

Die Störche talisman Lee Jae-sung pulled one back for his side with a header on 63 minutes, but Kiel couldn’t find the equalizer in the remaining 25 minutes. Hannover move slightly away from the bottom of the table, while Kiel remain further behind.

Stuttgart 2 – Greuther Fürth 1

League leaders Stuttgart put in a clinical, but fortunate, display at the Mercedes-Benz Arena on Friday evening, taking 3 points over visiting Fürth.

Stuttgart jumped out in front in the first two minutes. Nicolás González’s cross from the right was met by Silas Wamangituka, and his deflected header skipped across the face of goal, eluding Fürth keeper Sascha Burchert, and left Daniel Didavi with the easiest of tap ins to give the hosts the lead.

Two injury forced substitutions in the first half, including one for keeper Gregor Kobel, put Stuttgart’s backs against the wall, but Kleeblätter’s Tobias Mohr missed a glorious chance in the 29th minute when his curled shot rattled the crossbar. Mohr again beat substitute Stuttgart goalkeeper Fabian Bredlow in the 57th minute, but this time his low shot caromed off the left post.

Fürth’s push for a winner left them susceptible on the counter, and Stuttgart took advantage in the 82nd minute. Philipp Förster got to Philipp Klement’s excellent through ball first, and after a slightly deflected rounding of the keeper, the midfielder took his time, kept his head, and slotted into an open net to seal the result. Stuttgart maintain their league leading position, but the result might be harsh on Kleeblätter, who played well, only to be denied by the crossbar and post.

Nürnberg 1 – Karlsruher 1

A tightly contested match resulted in shared points between Nürnberg and Karlsruher at the Max-Morlock-Stadion on Saturday afternoon.

Der Club were looking for their first win in three matches and while they held the advantage in several offensive statistics including possession (63%-37%) and shots on goal (7-3), visiting KSC were never really out of the match and looked threatening on the counter.

The opener came from the penalty spot. Karlsruher full-back Dirk Carlson fouled Nürnberg’s Nikola Dovedan in the 21st minute and Johannes Geis emphatically dispatched the spot kick to give the hosts the lead. KSC levelled things in the 40th minute, when Manuel Stiefler shot past Nürnberg keeper Christian Mathenia, after good work from Marvin Pourié.

Neither side could find the winner in the second half, despite decent chances at both ends. Karlsuher couldn’t take advantage of 8 corners throughout the match and KSC keeper Benjamin Uphoff pushed Michael Frey’s shot over the cross-bar to deny Nürnberg their best chance in the final 45, so both sides had to be content with a draw.

Arminia Bielefled 5 – Wiesbaden 2

In what’s become a recurring theme thus far this season, bottom club Wiesbaden took an early lead in their match at the BRITA-Arena, only for Bielefeld to come roaring back and run out emphatic winners.

Stefan Aigner’s cross from the right across the goalmouth found an unmarked Manuel Schäffler, who passed the ball into the net to give the hosts the lead 4 minutes into the match. High-scoring Bielefeld however, answered with 3 goals in 23 minutes toward the end of the first half.

Cebio Soukou’s long-range shot snuck past both the Wiesbaden defense and keeper Lukas Watkowiak to tie the score in the 20th minute. Andreas Voglsammer then served Fabian Klos a delightful cross goal pass that Watkowiak couldn’t keep out to give the visitors the lead less than 15 minutes later. And just before halftime, a mix-up in the Wiesbaden defense let Jóan Símun Edmundsson through on goal and his low shot gave Bielefeld a 3-1 halftime lead.

Voglsammer headed in Bielefeld’s fourth goal off a free kick in the 52nd minute. Schäffler pulled one back for Wiesbaden four minutes later, but it was too little, too late for the hosts. Klos bagged a brace in the 73rd minute off a fast counterattack, his league leading sixth tally of the season, and Wiesbaden center-back Benedikt Röcker injured himself in a collision with Klos six minutes later. To add insult to literal injury, Röcker’s challenge conceded a penalty and earned him a straight red card for the last man tackle. Watkowiak redeemed himself somewhat by saving Voglsammer’s ensuing penalty, but the result was already decided.

Bielefeld remain unbeaten and third in the table, while Wiesbaden are firmly bottom, with a single, solitary point.

Sandhausen 1 – Bochum 1

Bochum came agonizingly close to their first league win of the season away to Sandhausen, only to have it snatched away near the death.

Die Unabsteigbaren started the match brightly, with center-back Saulo Decarli come close to scoring in the 3rd minute, only for Sandhausen keeper Martin Fraisl to scramble it away to safety. Bochum continued on the front foot throughout the first half and Simon Zoller should have scored after he was put through on goal in the 45th minute, only for Fraisl to deny Bochum the lead once again.

Silvère Ganvoula M’boussy finally gave Bochum a deserved lead by prodding the ball in from 6 yards out after a corner. The goal seemed to wake up hosts Sandhausen, who upped the tempo and created more chances in the final 30 minutes than they had in the first 60. Bochum keeper Manuel Riemann was a busy man over the final minutes. He saved from Philip Türpitz on 80 minutes, but unfortunately could do nothing to stop Aziz Bouhaddouz from smashing in a cross from the right on 88 minutes.

Sandhausen almost snatched all the points at the death, but Riemann was on hand to deny Dennis Diekmeier’s attempted winner, and Bochum were at least able to come away with a point, despite being the better side the majority of the match.

Osnabrück 1 – St Pauli 1

A week after an historic derby win over city rivals Hamburg, St Pauli ventured south to North-Rhine Westphalia and came away with a point against Osnabrück.

In a match in which both sides had an equal or greater number of fouls than shots, the hosts took the lead in the 12th minute off a Kevin Wolze free kick. Ten minutes later, Kiezkicker striker Dimitris Diamantakos beat two defenders on the left and then provided an inch perfect cross for Ryo Miyaichi to hammer a left-footed shot into the goal for 1-1. Matt Penney thought he’d given St Pauli the lead in the 39th minute, but Miyaichi was correctly flagged offside in the build-up.

The remainder of the match was hotly contested, but featured relatively few chances for either side. Osnabrück were granted a golden opportunity when St Pauli substitute Youba Diarra was judged to have fouled Etienne Amenyido from behind in build-up and was given a second yellow card, resulting in his dismissal. Despite the man advantage, Osnabrück couldn’t seize the chance and both sides had to share spoils.

Dynamo Dresden 2 – Jahn Regensburg 1

Dresden came from behind to take a vital 3 points against visiting Regensburg at the Rudolf-Harbig-Stadion on Sunday afternoon.

As they are apt to do, Dresden held the possession advantage throughout the match, but it was the visitors who were more dangerous at the start. After spurning several good chances in the first 25 minutes, it was Jann-Christopher George who finally fired his side into the lead. A good pass from Chima Okoroji left the German-American through on goal and he coolly beat Dresden keeper Kevin Broll for the opening goal.

Regensburg are known as a difficult side to break down, particularly when they have the lead, but nobody apparently told Dresden, who equalized in the 55th minute. Substitute Barış Atik found Linus Wahlqvist on the right and the Swede’s resulting cross found Moussa Koné in front of goal and the Senegalese striker duly put the ball in the net.

It didn’t appear that a winner was forthcoming, despite both side’s best efforts, but then from nowhere in the 88th minute, Dresden center-back Florian Ballas scored the goal of the weekend, a 25-yard belter into the top corner. The win was all that Dresden deserved after a fine second-half performance, but Regensburg will come away disappointed after having let their early lead slip away.

Hamburg 4 – Erzgebirge Aue 0

Hamburg manager Dieter Hecking must really hate dropping points. After losing the Hamburg Derby last Monday, his HSV side ran out emphatic 4-0 winners on Sunday afternoon, the same score line by which they trounced Nürnberg immediately after dropping their only other result on the season.

HSV were the dominant side throughout, despite Erzgebirge’s best efforts to disrupt the flow of play. Full-back Josha Vagnoman scored his first goal for the club in the 18th minute, after a mazy run into the penalty area gave him an opening and his left footed shot was deflected past Erzgebirge keeper Martin Männel. Striker Lukas Hinterseer steered Martin Harnik’s layoff into the net for HSV’s second, a more than deserved score line given Hamburg’s dominance.

It continued shortly after halftime, when Harnik scored his first goal for the club after a long ball over the top from Rick van Drongelen. Hamburg’s fourth was the best of the bunch, a superb team goal started by Aaron Hunt, who sent the ball out wide for Sonny Kittel. Kittel then laid it back to his captain, who flicked the ball over Männel to cap off the scoring.

The result sees Hamburg keep pace with Stuttgart and Bielefeld near the top of the table, while Erzgebirge fall to 7th after a disappointing display.

Table

1. Stuttgart – 17 points

2. Hamburg – 16 points

3. Arminia Bielefeld – 15 points

4. Heidenheim – 11 points (+3 GD)

5. Sandhausen – 11 points (+2 GD)

6. Fürth – 11 points (0 GD)

7. Erzgebirge Aue – 11 points (-2 GD)

Top Scorers

1. Fabian Klos (Arminia Bielefeld) – 6 goals

2. Manuel Schäffler (Wiesbaden) – 5 goals

3. 8 tied with 4 goals

Key Upcoming Matches – Matchday 8 (September 27 – 30)

Stuttgart @ Arminia Bielefeld – Friday 9/27, 12:30 pm EST

Hamburg @ Regensburg – Saturday 9/28, 7:00 am EST

Dynamo Dresden @ Erzgebirge Aue – Sunday 9/29, 7:30 am EST

Nürnberg @ Hannover – Monday 9/30, 2:30 pm EST