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14.03.2022Bundesliga

#B04KOE review: ‘Could have got more out of it’

The derby against FC Köln ends in a 1-0 defeat and youngster Florian Wirtz suffers a torn cruciate. A lot happened for Bayer 04 in the first home defeat for the Werkself since the end of October last year – the Werkself review…
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SUMMARY: KÖLN EFFICIENCY

With the backing of the fans greeting the team bus and 04 changes to the starting line-up, the Werkself were under pressure from Köln early on. The hosts did create several good chances in the first half – but Paulinho (10', 17') was equally unsuccessful as Moussa Diaby (35’) and Kerem Demirbay (41’). The Werkself went into dressing room at half-time with the score at 0-0 but with two injuries (see below). A third substitution was made for the start of the second half as Odilon Kossounou was unable to continue due to a muscular problem.

 

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The substitutions by the other side had a crucial effect on the afternoon: The only goal of the game was scored by Köln’s Kingsley Schindler from an assist by Dejan Ljubicic on 67 minutes – both came off the bench three minutes before the goal. Bayer 04 came close to equalising including two efforts from Sardar Azmoun (74’, 79’) but the ball did not end up in the back of the net. HERE is the match report.

REACTION: "BITTERLY DISAPPOINTING AFTERNOON"

Central defender Jonathan Tah spoke after the game: "We're all incredibly disappointed. Our performance wasn't good enough in the first half." Head coach Gerardo Seoane came to the following conclusion: "Overall it's a bitterly disappointing afternoon for us with the three injuries and the defeat. We could have got more out of it – not just in the taking of chances but also in terms of being combative and our tackling."

PERSONNEL: THREE INJURIES

Gerardo Seoane already referred to it: Jeremie Frimpong (13’), Florian Wirtz (28’) plus Odilon Kossounou (46’) all had to be substituted because of injuries. While the season is over for Wirtz due to a torn cruciate, it remains to be seen how long the two defenders will be sidelined. Frimpong complained of pain in his ankle and Kossounou had muscular problems. Get well you two and fit again quickly.

 

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STATS: MORE SHOTS ON GOAL

It says a lot about the course of the game that the football journal kicker named the Köln keeper Marvin Schwäbe as the Man of the Match. While the team from Cologne used one of their few clear-cut opportunities, the Werkself were ineffective in front of goal on the afternoon. The chances ratio of 7 to 4 confirms that. The Black and Reds also had their noses in front in terms of possession and challenges won – even if narrowly.

WHAT THE PAPERS SAY: "SHOCK"

"Torn cruciate" – this short and sharp headline in the Süddeutsche Zeitung probably hits all Leverkusen and German football fans hard. Bayer 04 published the diagnosis of the injury to Florian Wirtz on Sunday evening. The Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung headline reads "Leverkusen shocked" and Kölner Stadt-Anzeiger also talks about a "shock" and the Kölnische Rundschau opts for the word "nightmare". The Bild reports: "He's out for months. His playing in the World Cup is at great risk."

OUTLOOK: THE IMPORTANT SECOND GAME

Following the derby, the Werkself the have another very important fixture coming up: Atalanta visit Leverkusen on Thursday 17 March (kick-off: 18.45 CET) in the UEFA Europa League Round of 16 second leg. That is followed three days later by the Bundesliga away game at VfL Wolfsburg (kick-off: 17.30 CET). The next international break comes after that.

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