26. Matchday

DSC Arminia Bielefeld
3: 1
VfL Bochum 1848VfL Bochum 1848

So,  17.03.201913:30 2. Bundesliga

VfL Bochum 1848 had to admit to defeat after a bitter Sunday afternoon at the Bielefeld “Alm”. Despite club stalwart Patrick Fabian’s best efforts giving us the lead after 63 minutes, the hosts came back to stun VfL. Their response was speedy, with Voglsammer equalising after 68 minutes before Klos converted a very dubious penalty on the 78th minute. Clauss later added a third moments later. To round off a miserable afternoon, Jan Gyamerah was sent off for a professional foul in the 82 minute.

VfL head coach Robin Dutt put his faith in the same starting XI as the recent 1-0 home win over 1. FC Heidenheim. The squad remained almost unchanged with only Danilo Soares replacing Dominik Baumgartner, who had to miss out due to an infection. For Lukas Hinterseer, who came back into training this week, Sunday’s match in Bielefeld came too soon.

Arminia coach Uwe Neuhaus changed his side in four positions following their 5-1 defeat at the hands of 1. FC Köln, with Jonathan Clauss, Florian Hartherz, Manuel Prietl and Reinhold Yabo being replaced with Anderson Lucoqui, captain Julian Börner, Nils Seufert and Cédric Brunner.

Right from the kick-off, Arminia displayed intent to make up for their 5-1 defeat at Cologne in front of their home crowd. After just three minutes, the hosts had their first chance to take the lead. A cross from Brunner on the right was initially blocked by Simon Zoller but Brunner's second attempt from an acute angle struck the crossbar. Replays showed that Manuel Riemann had made a fine fingertip save and saved VfL from an early deficit.

The game calmed down a bit now and VfL’s first dangerous attack came in the 13th minute when Chung-Yong Lee crossed to Zoller, who headed the ball just over the crossbar. After that, the game was mostly contested in midfield, with both teams trying to go forward but remaining mainly harmless.

The next big chance fell to Arminia again when Brunner found himself unmarked once more to tee the ball up for Klos whose effort narrowly missed the goal on the 22nd minute. Just seconds later, Zoller’s offside goal had the VfL supporters’ hearts racing. This started a spell of Bochum dominance with Hoogland hitting a nice diagonal ball towards Gyamerah who found Pantovic, who hit the ball on his second touch but had to watch Ortega block it after 30 minutes.

Although Arminia had to replace the injured Seufert with Tom Schütz, they were the team creating the opportunities. First, it was Brunner again who crossed for Voglsammer’s header to zoom past the Bochum goal, and then Gyamerah needed a last-gasp block against the same player.

After a goalless and mostly uninspiring first half, Bielefeld stayed on the front foot, and Riemann needed to be on guard to save Klos’ left-footed attempt from inside the box. Then Bochum hit the hosts on the break and Behrendt was forced to foul Zoller on the edge of the box to be shown the yellow card but Pantovic hit a tame shot into the wall.

After Zoller had another goal chalked off for off-side on 62 minutes, the Blue-and-White support finally had reason to celebrate only seconds later when a corner found Pantovic who had his shot blocked only as far as Patrick Fabian, for the veteran defender to smash the ball through two defenders for his second goal of the season and VfL Bochum’s 700th goal in 2. Bundesliga. But the celebrations were short-lived with Klos laying off for Voglsammer who beat Gyamerah to the ball to drill a low shot from 18 yards past Riemann on the 68th minute.

VfL were evidently shaken, with Robin Dutt trying to turn the tide by introducing Thomas Eisfeldt for Tom Weilandt, but to no avail. In the 78th minute, Janelt was rising for the ball when it hit his arm only for the referee to award a more than dubious penalty, which Klos made no mistake in converting. The next Bielefeld attack hit Bochum for six – or rather for three – when Clauss volleyed a loose ball in the roof of the Bochum net. Bochum were falling apart now with Gyamerah bringing down Weihrauch, who was clean through, on the edge of the box and earning himself a red card for his troubles. Bielefeld were close to a fourth goal now but for Hoogland’s desperate clearance off the goal line. Onwards and upwards after the international break.

Robin Dutt (Head Coach VfL Bochum 1848): I witnessed a quite balanced game for most of the time today. Bielefeld had the first chances to score, after that it was back and forth. It was a very ambitious match, maybe not necessarily for the spectators, but from a tactical point of view. It was not easy for both teams to solve this situation. Both had a considerable attacking play, but that caused numerous mistakes. That sums up the whole match actually. But when you manage to take the lead in an away game twenty minutes before the final whistle, you have to shut up shop and get the victory. But, there were two long balls and we’re 2-1 down. That must not happen, in these situations you need to defend properly. That is why we lost today. I can actually not comment on the handball before Arminia’s second goal. I was far away, but even if I had seen it: to be honest, you don’t really know what the rule even says. I feel pretty much uncertain like everyone else does.

Uwe Neuhaus (Head Coach Arminia Bielefeld): I think Robin is right. In the first 30 minutes we played a reasonable game, we only missed one good chance. Sometimes one effort is enough to fall behind. We need to improve in that regard. In this stage we were hiding a little. Then we were completely asleep when the corner kick was converted to the 1-0 lead. Of course, we had to make some tactical changes right after that, Voglsammer and Klos have the ability to control long balls. Sometimes a spark can cause a wildfire, we even said that before the game. Our second goal was exactly that, after the brace the match was decided. These three points were so important before the international break.

Simon Zoller (VfL Bochum 1848): I think that we were able to improve our performance in the second half. We showed a good attacking play, scored two offside goals, concede a penalty that actually shouldn’t have been awarded. Until then we were playing quite well. It was a demanding match, but today we weren’t fully focussed for five minutes and concede twice – which is pretty annoying. We showed a good attacking play, losing 1-3 is really bitter.

Tom Weilandt (VfL Bochum 1848): It was quite bitter as I think we were defending well. Our style of play was not exactly brilliant, but we were dangerous at any time and could even take the lead. I cannot explain how it is possible to experience such a horrible stage of the match. The handball was more than worthy of discussion. Vitaly turns his back to the pitch and does not even see the ball. But I guess, the referees learned to award penalties in such situations. This defeat just means to keep working harder.

Patrick Fabian (VfL Bochum 1848): We’re kind of knocked out these days. Currently some players are playing with minor injuries, moreover we keep fighting with other illnesses during the week. I think, the international break will help us to recover. In two weeks’ time we have a great home match against Hamburg in front of a sell-out crowd – now we have to focus on that.