What the papers say: 'One step away from the final'

Bayer 04 are in the semi-finals of the DFB Cup after beating Union Berlin 3-1 in the quarter-finals. After being a goal down at half-time, the Werkself turned the game around in the closing stages – the unanimous view of the press reports.

"One step away from the final" is the headline in the Kölnische Rundschau, which also points out a weak first half for the Werkself: "From the kick-off, Leverkusen were uninspired, weak in challenges and without a goalscoring opportunity against well-organised visitors. The half-time lead for Union with a header from Marcus Ingvartsen after a double blunder by Sinkgraven (39') was absolutely deserved."

After the restart, "the Werkself body language changed and there was more determination and tempo. " Furthermore: "Bayer have moved a step closer to the longed for title."

"Just at the right time"

The Frankfurter Rundschau (headline: "Bayer battle through") reports: "After half-time, Bayer upped the tempo somewhat but only really got going with the second yellow for Lenz and the introduction of Bellarabi and his prompt equaliser. Just at the right time."

"The strength of the underdogs faded away," was the view of the FAZ in describing the closing stages for Union.

"Huge possession rate"

The Kölner Stadt-Anzeiger reports the first-half performance of Bayer 04: "Bayer 04 had a huge possession rate, but that only came from moving the ball around their own defensive lines. There were no threatening moves." The dismissal of Union's Christopher Lenz (71') in the closing stages of the cup tie was "a game changer". "The match changed with considerably more space and pacy substitutes Diaby and Karim Bellarabi on the pitch."

The BILD headline in relation to the 1.71-metre tall Leverkusen player Charles Aránguiz: "Aránguiz’ heroic header." The Chilean gave the Werkself a 2-1 lead on 86 minutes with a headed goal. The strike provided "the salvation."

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