What the papers say: ‘The expected picture on the pitch'

"Controlled attacking," VAR discussions – and a curious statistic about Ömer Toprak. What the papers say about the 1-1 draw with Werder Bremen.

"Leverkusen picked up a point against Bremen (1-1) after two league defeats in succession," notes the BILD before going on to consider the situation in the leading group in the table in view of the defeats for Bayern and Leipzig: Bayer 04 "have not let the gap to the top of the table grow any bigger."

The Welt am Sonntag describes the Werkself approach to the game as follows: Bayer sought salvation in controlled attacking. And they had the first chance through Bailey. But he failed to connect properly with the ball from eight metres out on nine minutes."

Overall, the WAZ report sees "the expected picture on the pitch developed at the bitterly cold BayArena. Bremen (…) sat back and got behind the ball. The Werkself had lots of possession but lacked ideas and penetration."

Toprak last scored in a Werkself shirt

The opening goal from Bremen shortly after the restart was quite a surprise for RP ONLINE. "Although Werder showed hardly any signs of even wanting to score a goal in the first half, the visitors took the lead shortly after the restart," says the match report. "With a free kick from Ludwig Augustinsson, Leverkusen lost sight of Ömer Toprak. (…) It was the first goal in four years for the 31-year-old – back then in a Werkself shirt."

The reaction of the Werkself is described in the EXPRESS as follows: "Bayer pressed for the equaliser. Demirbay's free kick (56') was the next decent chance."

No penalty late on

An even better one was to follow. "The Leverkusen equaliser on 70 minutes was initially ruled out by referee Benjamin Cortus," writes the Kölner Stadt-Anzeiger in describing the leveller at 1-1. "However, the VAR footage showed that Lucas Alario did not touch the ball with his hand when controlling it before laying off to Patrik Schick who put the ball in the back of the net with the help of Friedl's leg. So the somewhat curious goal was allowed."

The final sentence in the Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung looks at the much discussed refereeing decision of the day: "As Cortus saw the handball by Mbom just before the end of the game (90+2') as unintentional, Werder deservedly earned a point."

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