The 2. Bundesliga returned from the winter break with a flourish as the Top 3 got back to their winning ways, while the bottom two also got into the winner’s column and made things even more interesting at the other end of the table. Here are the results:
Arminia Bielefeld 2 – Bochum 0
The league leaders returned to form at the start of the spring term, coming out deserved winners over 10 man Bochum at the Schüco-Arena on Tuesday evening.
Uwe Neuhaus’s charges went into the winter break without a win in their last 3 games and they came out looking to put that unfortunate run to bed. Bochum were content to play deep and defensive in an attempt to hold Bielefeld’s offensive firepower at bay, but the hosts had the first real chance of the match in the 18th minute when Jonathan Clauss’s shot from the right struck the crossbar.
Bielefeld opened the scoring nine minutes later from a Marcel Hartel free kick. Center-back, and former Dortmund youth graduate, Amos Pieper brought the ball down cleverly before seeing his attempted shot blocked. Bochum however couldn’t clear the ball and it eventually found its way to Andreas Voglsammer, who smashed in his 10th goal of the season emphatically.
Bochum upped the physicality to try and throw Bielefeld off their game, picking up a succession of yellow cards toward the end of the first half and into the second. Bielefeld responded in kind and the referee eventually brandished cards to half the players on the pitch. Voglsammer came close to a second in the 58th minute, but he shot just over the bar.
Frustration finally boiled over for Bochum as keeper Manuel Riemann was sent off in the 84th minute for an angry dissent. Having used all 3 of their substitutions by this point, midfielder Vitaly Janelt had to put in the gloves for the final minutes. Captain and league leading scorer Fabian Klos finally put the result to bed in the 3rd minute of stoppage time from close range.
The win keeps Bielefeld top, while Bochum remain in the bottom half of the table.
Jahn Regensubrg 1 – Hannover 0
Hannover’s subpar season continued as they dropped their first match after the winter break to Regensburg at a snowy Continental Arena.
It was a back and forth affair, with both sides creating several chances apiece. Die Roten held the possession advantage (60%-40%), but the hosts put more shots on target (7-4) over the course of the 90 minutes. Marvin Ducksch came close to giving the visitors the lead in the opening 20 minutes, but it appeared that things would go into the half scoreless, until referee Patrick Alt awarded the hosts a penalty in the 6th minute of first half stoppage time for a foul on Jann-Christopher George.
Max Besuschkow subsequently scored to give Regensburg the lead. Substitute Erik Wekesser nearly doubled their lead in the 53rd minute, only for a Hannover defender to make a goal line clearance in the nick of time.
Despite having to make two injury forced substitutions over the course of the match, including one for Wekesser, who himself came on as an injury substitute in the first half, Regensburg held sway and came away with the 3 points, moving up to 5th in the table in the process.
Wiesbaden 1 – Erzgebirge 0
Ten man Wiesbaden got their spring term off to a great start with an upset win over Erzgebirge at the BRITA-Arena on Tuesday evening.
The hosts came out hungry and Erzgebirge keeper Martin Männel had to make two critical saves in the first 7 minutes. He could do nothing to stop Paterson Chato’s 14th minute effort from a Daniel-Kofi Kyereh corner however and Wiesbaden took an early lead.
Wiesbaden pushed for a second, but were denied by a stingy Erzgebirge defense and a typically good performance from Männel. The visitors slowly worked their way into the match and put the home side under pressure in the second half. Wiesbaden shot themselves in the foot in the 68th minute when midfielder Sebastian Mrowca, already on a yellow card from earlier in the match, was sent off for a second bookable offense.
Forced to finish the match a man down, Wiesbaden keeper Heinz Lindner stepped up and managed to keep Erzgebirge from scoring for the remaining minutes, saving from both Dimitrij Nazarov and Pascal Testroet. Thanks to the heroics of their keeper, Wiesbaden held on and took their 5th win of the season.
The result bumps them up to 16th, still very much in the relegation fight however.
Greuther Fürth 3 – St Pauli 0
St Pauli’s stuttering campaign continued as they were thoroughly outplayed by hosts Fürth at the Sportpark Ronhof Thomas Sommer.
Key man Branimir Hrgota had a huge chance to give the hosts the lead in just the 7th minute, but, after rounding keeper Robin Himmelmann, his shot from a tight angle struck the side netting. Kiezkicker then thought they’d taken the lead 10 minutes later through Henk Veerman, but the goal was disallowed for handball, which was upheld on VAR review. The visitors then had another goal chalked off in the 34th minute when he was adjudged to have fouled keeper Sascha Burchert in the buildup.
Kleeblätter’s splendid Swedish star made St Pauli pay just before halftime, when his shot from distance skimmed off the wet surface and snuck past Himmelmann at the far post. Both sides spurned several chances in the second half, but due to a combination of fine keeper play and questionable attacking decisions in the final third, it remained 1-0 until the final few minutes.
Fürth finally caught the visitors out in the 86th minute, when Jamie Leweling scored on the break. Teammate Daniel Keita-Ruel put the icing on the cake in stoppage time with a curling effort past Himmelmann.
The win keeps Fürth in the top half of the table and St Pauli in the bottom half.
Stuttgart 3 – Heidenheim 0
New Stuttgart manager Pellegrino Matarazzo got off to an impressive start in his first match in charge as VfB trounced visiting Heidenheim at the Mercedes-Benz Arena on Wednesday evening.
Stuttgart saw the majority of the ball throughout the match (59%-41%), with the visitors content to play the counter in the early going. The hosts would have to make the best of their possession and Nicolás González forced Heidenheim keeper Kevin Müller into an early save. Stuttgart’s pressure eventually bore fruit in the 32nd minute. Daniel Didavi’s cross found the head of an onrushing Marc-Oliver Kempf who, after Müller saved his first effort, continued his run forward and fired in from close range.
Heidenheim had to be more active in the second half, but despite their efforts, they were only able to test Stuttgart keeper Gregor Kobel once in the 90 minutes and he kept the ball out. Stuttgart were then able to put the match away in the waning minutes. First, substitute Borna Sosa crossed to González to head home in the 76th minute. Fellow substitute Mario Gómez scored just after coming on for González 10 minutes later to round out the scoring.
Stuttgart keep pace with Bielefeld after an impressive home win, while Heidenheim remain 4th.
Holstein Kiel 1 – Darmstadt 1
Visiting Darmstadt were able to hold hosts Kiel at the Holstein-Stadion and secure a precious point on the road.
Kiel were the dominant team on the day, but Darmstadt’s defense stood tall for the majority and kept them in the match throughout. Center-back Stefan Thesker gave the hosts a 30th minute lead from a buttery Lee Jae-sung corner, but Darmstadt striker Serdar Dursun volleyed in an equalizer just before halftime.
Dursun’s goal would prove to be Darmstadt’s only shot on target in the 90 minutes. Kiel held the possession advantage (58%-42%), but outside of Thesker’s goal, they were very profligate, putting only 5 of their 21 other shots on goal. Marcel Schuhen stopped their remaining attempts and Die Störche had to be content with a solitary point for their efforts on the evening.
Sandhausen 3 – Osnabrück 1
The only away team to win on Matchday 19 was Sandhausen, as they outlasted 10 man Osnabrück at the Stadion an der Bremer Brücke.
Lila-Weiß appeared to have an early lead through a Felix Agu header, but VAR chalked off the goal due to an offside in the buildup. After both sides traded chances, things heated up in the 43rd minute. Osnabrück keeper Philipp Kühn fouled Sandhausen’s Kevin Behrens in the box, resulting in a penalty and a yellow card for the keeper. Kühn saved Leart Paqarada’s resulting penalty, but he was whistled for coming off his line too early and received a second yellow card for his troubles. Paqarada beat substitute keeper Nils Körber with his second attempt to give Sandhausen the lead.
It took only a handful of seconds for the hosts to equalize at the start of the second half. Bashkim Renneke beat Sandhausen keeper Martin Fraisl for 1-1, but Behrens restored Sandhausen’s lead on 60 minutes after good work from right-back Dennis Diekmeier.
Sandhausen made good use of their man advantage in the remaining minutes and Behrens finished the match off in the 84th minute with a fine header.
With the win, Sandhausen leapfrogs Osnabrück into 8th place in the table.
Dynamo Dresden 1 – Karlsruher 0
Bottom side Dresden scored a massive win at the Rudolf-Harbig-Stadion and put visiting Karlsruher in an uneasy position in the table as a result.
The match overall wasn’t very easy on the eyes, as the teams combined for more cards (6) than shots on target (4).
It was Freiburg loanee Marco Terrazzino who scored the only goal of the match in the 38th minute, on his debut for the hosts. Dresden were able to keep a largely toothless KSC side at bay for the entirety of the match, as the visitors put only 1 shot on target the whole way.
Dresden stay bottom, even with the win, while KSC find themselves 15th, just a point above the relegation zone.
Hamburg 4 – Nürnberg 1
Hamburg kept pace with Bielefeld and Stuttgart by running roughshod over visiting Nürnberg at the Volksparkstadion on Thursday evening.
Dieter Hecking reverted back to a youthful side and it paid off as HSV were on the front foot from the start. Lukas Hinterseer and Köln loanee Louis Schaub both went close early before Bakery Jatta opened the scoring on 17 minutes. Schaub then earned his new side a penalty in the 27th minute after being fouled by Arsenal loanee Konstantinos Mavropanos. Hinterseer coolly scored from the spot to double the hosts’ lead.
Nürnberg were on the back foot throughout most of the match, but left-back Tim Handwerker pulled one back in the 51st minute with a fine effort from the left edge of the area. But HSV were just too much on this night and when Nürnberg’s other center-back Georg Margreitter was penalized for a handball in the box in the 66th minute, Sonny Kittel restored his side’s two goal advantage from the spot.
Gideon Jung wrapped up the scoring with a volley in the 82nd minute and Hamburg cruised to the win, maintaining their 2nd place in the table, while Nürnberg fall into the relegation zone in 17th.
1. Arminia Bielefeld – 37 points
2. Hamburg – 34 points (+20 GD)
3. Stuttgart – 34 points (+9 GD)
4. Heidenheim – 30 points
5. Jahn Regensburg – 29 points (+5 GD)
6. Erzgebirge Aue – 29 points (+2 GD)
1. Fabian Klos (Arminia Bielefeld) – 14 goals
2. Manuel Schäffler (Wiesbaden) – 12 goals
T3. Philipp Hofmann (Karlsruher) – 10 goals
T3. Silvère Ganvoula M’boussy (Bochum) – 10 goals
T3. Andreas Voglsammer (Arminia Bielefeld) – 10 goals
Key Upcoming Matches – Matchday 20 (January 31 – February 3)
Greuther Fürth @ Jahn Regensburg – Friday 1/31, 12:30 pm EST
Arminia Bielefeld @ Erzgebirge Aue – Friday 1/31, 12:30 pm EST
Stuttgart @ St Pauli – Saturday 2/1, 7:00 am EST
Dynamo Dresden @ Heidenheim – Sunday 2/2, 7:30 am EST
Hamburg @ Bochum – Monday 2/3, 2:30 pm EST