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21.07.2018Bayer 04

3-0 in Siegen – impressive first half

Bayer 04 win the second pre-season friendly 3-0 at Westphalian Oberliga club Sportfreunde Siegen. Lars Bender (17'), Lucas Alario (19') and Kevin Volland (27') emphasised the towering superiority of the Werkself in the first half with their goals. "Several players were feeling the pace after the hour mark but that's no surprise as we've worked very hard in training this week," said head coach Heiko Herrlich. "Our focus in the pre-season is completely on the first competitive match in the first round of the DFB Cup at Pforzheim."
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In pleasant temperatures in front of 1,600 fans at the Leimbach Stadium – in stark contrast  to the last match in the Rhineland – the Werkself played flowing football from the kick-off and quickly had their first goalscoring opportunities. A low drive from Karim Bellarabi on two minutes was kept out at the near post by the Siegen keeper Christoph Thiesus and the same striker tried his luck again three minutes later but this shot went just past the top corner of the net. Bayer 04, with skipper Lars Bender and Kai Havertz in central midfield, were successful down the flanks and produced a fine move for the opening goal: Wendell sent in a low cross behind the opposition defence and Lars Bender converted from 15 yards out on 14 minutes.

Bellarabi with two Assists

The visitors were also successful down the right: A whipped-in cross from Bellarabi was headed in by Lucas Alario just inside the post on 19 minutes – the prompt second goal from Leverkusen was soon followed by a third scored by Kevin Volland with the lively Bellarabi again laying on the assist on 27 minutes. The impression at the break given further good to very good chances for Bailey, Dragovic, Alario and Volland: The Werkself were clearly enjoying  the game – even without Brandt, Jedvaj (both still on holiday after the World Cup), Aránguiz, Hradecky, Retsos, Pohjanpalo, Kohr (sidelined) and the latest member of the squad Paulinho.

Heiko Herrlich made five changes at half-time – and Siegen, who only had one attack before the break with a shot from Reo Suzuki hitting the side netting on 37 minutes, ventured into the Leverkusen half more often after the restart. Bayer 04 eased off in the second 45 and chances were missed by Leon Bailey who was kept out by the Siegen keeper after being put through by Sven Bender. The U19 player Ayman Azhil and Sam Schreck, plus Jan Boller and Adrian Stanilewicz later on (63'/73') saw four youngsters on the pitch. Alario (77'), Baumgartlinger (79') and Dragovic (82')all missed chances to increase the lead.

Third friendly in Wuppertal on tuesday

After a day off on Sunday, the  Werkself have an open training session on Monday at 16.00 CET and another friendly on Tuesday (19.00 CET, Stadion am Zoo) at Regional League side Wuppertaler SV.

Bayer 04: Kirschbaum (Özcan 46') – Weiser (Stanilewicz 73'), Dragovic, Tah (S. Bender 46'), Wendell (Bednarczyk 46') – L. Bender (Baumgartlinger 46'), Havertz (73') – Bellarabi (Henrichs 46'), Volland (Azhil 63'), Bailey (Schreck 63') – Alario

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