A goal with a back-heel, another in the corner of the net: The visitors from the Kraichgau proved to be creative and determined in front of the Werkself goal. Christoph Baumgartner scored the opener with a back-heel on nine minutes, Andrej Kramaric netted with a header from a yard out before half-time (35'), and a third goal for TSG from the Robert Skov was chalked off after a foul in the build-up thanks to the intervention VAR. Gerardo Seoane made two substitutions for the start of the second half – but the Werkself were unable to find the back of the net yesterday afternoon. The final result of 3-0 came with Georginio Rutter firing a shot into the far corner of the net in the closing stages (78').
Head coach Gerardo Seoane classified the result as "deserved". The team did not perform to their ability. The Swiss coach primarily saw the reasons for defeat in defence: "We gave the opponents too many chances and were unable to stop them because we weren't strong enough in challenges."
Keeper Lukas Hradecky was disappointed talking to Werkself TV: "We're not bringing our quality onto the pitch at the moment." The number one also named a lack of aggression is one of the factors: "At the moment, that gets punished. Now everybody has to accept responsibility and help out. That will be our challenge."
Lukas Hradecky returned in goal after serving a one-match ban and Robert Andrich was in the starting eleven on his return to the squad. The two leading players went to the North Stand after the final whistle to speak to the Black and Red fans. Afterwards there were chants of "Leverkusen! Leverkusen!" from the stands. A powerful sign.
The Werkself had a total of 14 shots on goal and Hoffenheim had four less. Both teams had 50 per cent in challenges won with Robert Andrich and Co. having the upper hand with 55 per cent of tackles made.
The Rheinische Post pointed out an historical fact: "The Champions League participants have lost the first four games of the season for the first time since promotion to the Bundesliga in 1978." The Berliner Morgenpost headline reads, "Sheer sadness rules at Bayer after false start."
After the last two home games, the Werkself are away to Mainz 05 on Saturday 27 August (kick-off: 15.30 CEST). That is followed at the start of September with the home game against SC Freiburg a few days before the first group match in the UEFA Champions League.
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