Back from the holiday break, the 2. Bundesliga kicks off 2021 with a flourish. Here are the results from Matchday 14:
Karlsruher 4 – Würzburger 2 (Saturday, January 2 – flyeralarm Arena)
Despite playing the final half hour with 10 men, Karlsruher had already built a big enough lead to hold off bottom side Würzburger.
Birthday boy Benjamin Goller opened the scoring for the visitors in the 12th minute. Marvin Wanitzek added a second for KSC on 28 minutes before giving one back himself on a corner just 4 minutes later. The midfielder made up for his own goal by notching his second of the half just before the halftime whistle.
Jérôme Gondorf made it 4-1 just after halftime and it seemed as though KSC would cruise the rest of the way, but then left-back Dirk Carlson picked up a second yellow card in the 58th minute and was sent off. Würzburger were gifted a second own goal when KSC’s Christoph Kobald ping-ponged the ball into his own net, but the hosts couldn’t best KSC keeper Marius Gersbeck on their own and ultimately came up short.
Bochum 2 – Darmstadt 1 (Saturday, January 2 – Vonovia Ruhrstadion)
Bochum staged a late comeback to stun Darmstadt and keep pace with the top of the table.
The visitors were the better side in the first half, but Bochum keeper Manuel Riemann made 4 critical saves in the opening 45 minutes to keep the match scoreless at the half. Serdar Dursun put the ball in the net just minutes into the second half, but it was chalked off due to an offside. Bochum gradually worked their way into the match, but that all appeared for naught when Tobias Kempe smashed in a 20-yard free kick in the 80th minute to give Darmstadt the lead.
But just 2 minutes later, Bochum skipper Anthony Losilla headed in an equalizer from a Robert Žulj free-kick, although it was later changed to a Kempe own goal. Substitute Miloš Pantović put Bochum ahead barely a minute later after good work from fellow sub Herbert Bockhorn. Those were ultimately the only two shots Bochum would put on target in the match and it ended up being enough for the win.
Heidenheim 2 – Nürnberg 0 (Saturday, January 2 – Voith-Arena)
A goal in each half gave Heidenheim a deserved win over Nürnberg.
The opening half featured chances at both ends, but neither side could find a breakthrough until just before halftime. Dortmund academy grad Dženis Burnić picked out teammate Denis Thomalla with a sublime chip and the attacking midfielder coolly scored past keeper Christian Mathenia to put the hosts ahead.
Nürnberg came out strong in the second half, but found themselves stymied by first the Heidenheim defense and then keeper Kevin Müller. Heidenheim took advantage and went 2-0 up in the 75th minute. Patrick Mainka headed in Kevin Sessa’s corner. Nürnberg kept searching for a way back into the match and thought they’d pulled one back just before stoppage time, but Adam Zreľák saw his goal overturned by VAR because teammate Manuel Schäffler was offside.
Heidenheim preserved the clean sheet and took the 3 points.
Greuther Fürth 2 – St Pauli 1 (Sunday, January 3 – Sportpark Ronhof Thomas Sommer)
St Pauli’s struggles continued into the new year as Fürth held on to inch closer to the top of the table.
The hosts were the dominant side on the day, as St Pauli’s attacking issues flared up once more. They failed to threaten much in the opening 20 minutes and then gave away a penalty when Marvin Knoll handled the ball in his own box. Julian Green scored into the bottom corner to give Kleeblätter a deserved lead.
Håvard Nielsen doubled the advantage just moments later from close range and Kiezkicker were fortunate to escape without further damage in the opening 45 minutes. It took over 80 minutes for St Pauli to finally register a shot, but fortunately for them, it resulted in a goal for substitute Leon Flach. But there was to be no attacking resurgence for the visitors, who find themselves stuck in the relegation zone.
Fürth meanwhile, cut the deficit to the top to 2 points.
Osnabrück 2 – Holstein Kiel 1 (Sunday, January 3 – Holstein-Stadion)
Osnabrück pulled the surprise of the weekend by taking a deserved away win over the league leaders coming in.
Die Störche would end up with a dominant possession advantage (67%-33%), but it was Lila-Weiß who ended up making the most of their limited time with the ball. Moments after Sebastian Kerk went close, Patrick Schmidt scored from long-range in the 27th minute after a fantastic chest down by teammate Ludovit Reis. Kerk then got a goal for himself with a splendid free kick from 28-yards out to double the visitors’ advantage on 42 minutes.
Kiel came out looking for an equalizer in the second half, but as the minutes passed, Osnabrück began to look more and more dangerous on the counter. The hosts were rather fortunate to not concede a third, and substitute Ahmet Arslan’s late goal proved to be too little too late. Lila-Weiß thus took an important win that jumbled the running order at the top of the table.
Hamburg 3 – Regensburg 1 (Sunday, January 3 – Volksparkstadion)
Hamburg’s fourth consecutive league win put them back at the top of the table.
A hectic start to the match saw both sides come close, but it wasn’t until the 21st minute that the deadlock was broken. Bakery Jatta was denied by Regensburg keeper Alexander Meyer, but the winger came right back and set up teammate David Kinsombi for the opener just seconds later. But Regensburg would come right back and tie things just 10 minutes later through midfielder Max Besuschkow.
But HSV went back in front in the 39th minute. Meyer couldn’t handle Jatta’s cross and left Simon Terodde with an easy tap-in. The second half started amidst a flurry of chances at both ends, with both keepers making fantastic saves. Hamburg made it a two-goal advantage in the 61st minute when Jatta capped an outstanding afternoon with a delightful chip over Meyer.
Regensburg appeared to have pulled one goal back just moments later, but VAR overturned the call on the pitch after it was adjudged that Jan-Niklas Beste had fouled Hamburg’s Sonny Kittel in the build-up. Regensburg kept coming and didn’t give up until the final whistle, but it was ultimately not to be.
Hamburg continued the streakiness that has defined their season. After opening the season with 5 straight wins, they then went 5 matches without a win, and have now won 4 in a row to go back on top of the table.
Hannover 4 – Sandhausen 0 (Sunday, January 3 – HDI-Arena)
Braces from Marvin Ducksch and Patrick Twumasi lifted Hannover to an easy win over Sandhausen.
Following an uneven opening 20 minutes, Die Roten began to take control of the match and Ducksch gave them the lead on 28 minutes with a left-footed shot from the center of the box. Sandhausen struggled to get out of their own half for much of the opening 45 minutes and were thankful to get to the break without further damage.
Twumasi was substituted on at the half for injured starter Valmir Sulejmani and made an immediate impact. The substitute won the ball in the center of the park, played a one-two with Ducksch, and stuck the ball into the goal past keeper Rick Wulle. Hannover then got a third 4 minutes later from a corner scrum. Niklas Hult’s initial shot following the set piece bashed off the post, but Sandhausen couldn’t clear and Ducksch scored from close range.
Die Roten kept pushing for more, even with the match firmly in hand. Twumasi capped a fine performance with his second of the match in the 89th minute with a curled shot from the edge of the area.
Erzgebirge Aue 3 – Braunschweig 1 (Sunday, January 3 – Erzgebirgsstadion)
Erzgebirge overcame an early deficit and proved too much for visiting Braunschweig.
Braunschweig were not intimidated by the prospect of playing in the Erzgebirgsstadion like others have been. They were the better side in the opening 20 minutes and Fabio Kaufmann gave them a deserved lead on 17 minutes. But as they are wont to do at home, Erzgebirge slowly worked their way back into the match and took control just before the half.
Florian Krüger tied the score on 42 minutes and then gave his side the lead on 67 when Braunschweig couldn’t prevent a fast break and Pascal Testroet’s cross found the striker’s head. Try as they did, Braunschweig just couldn’t put together enough for an equalizer and when Testroet scored the host’s third following a late corner, they ultimately came up short.
Düsseldorf 2 – Paderborn 1 (Monday, January 4 – Merkur Spiel-Arena)
Düsseldorf outlasted Paderborn and extended their winning streak to 5 matches.
The hosts were on the front foot early and only some spectacular goalkeeping from Leopold Zingerle kept Paderborn level. But that only lasted until the 22nd minute when Kristoffer Peterson gave Düsseldorf a deserved lead by turning in Kenan Karaman’s cross from the right from close range.
Paderborn struggled to get much of anything going offensively for the remainder of the half and they went further behind on 55 minutes. Karaman provided the finish this time from Matthias Zimmermann’s assist. The visitors wouldn’t put up much of a fight until the final 15 minutes of the match. Dortmund loanee Chris Führich continued his fine season by pulling one back for Paderborn in the 79th minute, but despite a late flurry, Paderborn ultimately couldn’t find an equalizer.
1. Hamburg – 29 points
2. Kiel – 28 points
3. Fürth – 27 points
4. Bochum – 26 points (+11 GD)
5. Düsseldorf – 26 points (+2 GD)
15. Braunschweig – 12 points
16. Sandhausen – 11 points
17. St Pauli – 8 points*
18. Würzburger – 4 points*
1. Simon Terodde (Hamburg) – 15 goals
T2. Christian Kühlwetter (Heidenheim) – 9 goals
T2. Serdar Dursun (Darmstadt) – 9 goals
T2. Pascal Testroet (Erzgebirge) – 9 goals
*St Pauli and Würzburger have played only 13 matches thus far.