It’s time for VfL’s last competitive match of the year and we’re on our way to Augsburg. We quite like it there as our away matches against FCA in the past always ended in our favour. Our LOOK AHEAD on #FCABOC:
Always one of the possible relegation teams, but always keeping it. FCA are in their 12th Bundesliga season in a row, a remarkable achievement. Augsburg have changed their personnel a little in the summer, not only on the coaching bench. In attack, Ermin Demirovic, now playing for Augsburg, and Michael Gregoritsch, who is now scoring for Freiburg, switched sides. It was worth it for everyone involved; Demirovic is FCA's top scorer with five goals so far. The attack has also been strengthened by Mergim Berisha, who came on loan from Istanbul. Another newcomer is well known here in Bochum: Elvis Rexhbecaj, who finally developed into a Bundesliga regular at VfL, is now ploughing the field in Augsburg. Long-time FCA players such as Jan Moravek and Alfred Finnbogason have not been given new contracts, and Ricardo Pepi, the absolute record-breaker, is no longer playing for FCA, but is on loan in the Netherlands.
THE HEAD COACH
As mentioned, there was also a change on the coaching bench. Markus Weinzierl has left Augsburg, of his own volition, but with side noises. Enrico Maaßen, who previously coached Borussia Dortmund's second team, is now in charge. The 38-year-old has experienced ups and downs so far. A 4-0 loss to Freiburg in the first game, followed by a remarkable 2-1 win in Leverkusen. But after five match days, only these three points were on the record. But Maaßen and his team have turned the corner, three wins in a row - including a 1-0 win against Bayern - have brought relief, also in terms of the standings. But FCA has been waiting for the next success for seven games now. Nevertheless, Maaßen is still securely in the job. The coach was born in Wismar and played for Hansa Rostock, among others, as an active player. And later for SV Drochtersen/Assel, with whom Maaßen then promptly made the transition to the coaching bench. He spent four years in the Regionalliga Nord, then moved on to SV Rödinghausen and over to Dortmund. Maaßen is now getting his first taste of Bundesliga action at FCA.
This encounter does not yet have a real tradition. There have been five competitive matches up to now, three of them in the last season alone. Twice in the league, with each team winning a match, and once in the cup. In the 2nd round, VfL spectacularly prevailed after penalties, Manuel Riemann scored the decider. A good omen: The Blue and Whites have had to play in Augsburg twice so far, and both matches ended in VfL's favour. Last year, they won the game 3-2 away from home, and in the 2nd Bundesliga, the Blue and Whites won 1-0.
VfL racked up their second Bundesliga victory in a row and have scored their first points in an away game. Letsch’s side beat Augsburg 1-0. Christopher Antwi-Adjei scored the goal of the day for a fighting Bochum squad. 13 points so far cause a quite good feeling before the long winter break.
Last Bundesliga fixture in 2022. The last away match of the year sees VfL Bochum 1848 travelling to Augsburg. A significant game with FCA five points ahead of the lads before kick-off. The point was not to let the gap grow at least. Compared to the 2-1 home victory over Borussia Mönchengladbach VfL head coach Thomas Letsch changed his starting line-up on only one position. Konstantinos Stafylidis replaced Philipp Förster in the first eleven.
That’s how the game went:
1´ Kick-off. Let’s go, VfL!
1´ First attack of the home side. Cross into the box is cleared by Gamboa. The attempt to break does not work out as Hofmann‘s pass to Antwi-Adjei is too short.
3´ First effort by FCA. But no danger at all, Niederlechner‘s header is saved easily by Riemann.
3´ Next attacking play from FCA. Demirovic shot is lacking power. The lads need to get back on the track slowly but surely.
6´ First stage of VfL being in possession. Tackling well, we’re playing well. Let’s go!,
7´ Impressive counterattack from Augsburg. Soares is there to clear with a sliding tackle, that was very importan!
11´ Next try to break fast by the home side. Ordets is able to clear against Demirovic, well done!
13´ First shot on target for VfL! Antwi-Adjei’s shot from distance is deflected, saved by FCA keeper Gikiewicz for a corner kick.
14´ Next clear-cut chance! Again Antwi-Adjei! After the corner kick the winger appears alone in front of the goal, but his shots hits the outside of the post. Keep going, lads!
16‘ Both sides are creating more and more chances at that point. Augsburg find themselves more often in the opposing box again, but VfL are defending properly.
23´ No way… Hofmann passes to Stöger who forwards the ball to Antwi-Adjei with a through pass. Antwi-Adjei makes his way towards the goal, but doesn’t hit the ball properly. Too bad he missed a great chance.
27´ Augsburg skipper Gouweleeuw has to leave the pitch due to injury. Vargas is sent on.
30´ Next substitution for Augsburg. Gruezo is replaced by Maier.
32´ Ordets showing a dynamite performance today.
36´ Another good attacking play by VfL. Hofmann is looking for Zoller at the far post, but an Augsburg player can clear.
37´ Freekick from Stöger, but Toto‘s header doesn’t find its way into the net.
45´ 4 minutes of additional time due to several injuries.
45+2´ Biggest chance of the game up to now – and it belonged to VfL. Remarkable assist from Antwi-Adjei, Zoller is waiting in the background but his shot misses the target by a whisker. That was close!
45+4´ Another attacking play by Augsburg. Gamboa throws himself into the ball and clears for a corner kick.
Half-time: Goalless draw at halftime. A first success compared to our recent away fixtures. We’re performing quite well, especially looking at our defensive work. Up front Antwi-Adjei and Zoller recorded two clear-cut chances, unfortunately left unused. We could have taken the lead, but anyway, keep going, lads!
46´ Re-start. No changes in line-up on either side.
46´ First effort in the second half is from VfL. Hofmann shoots, but doesn’t hit the ball properly.
49´ 28,011 people in the crowd in the WWK-Arena today.
54´ The action mostly takes place in the centre cirlce now. Both teams are struggling to crack the defence.
58´ GOAAAAL for VfL! Ang again it’s Antwi-Adjei! Long through pass to our winger who stays cool challenged by to opposing players and slots home. Bochum 1, Augsburg 0!
60´ Penalty for Augsburg. Zoller touches the ball with his arm, referee Dr. Felix Brych awards a penalty.
61´ THEY MISS! The score remains 1-0 with VfL in the lead! Berisha shoots the ball wide! YESSSS!
64´ First substitution for VfL. Förster replaces Zoller.
69´ Take a deep brecht. Best chance by Augsburg so far. Cross to Niederlechner whose shot is saved by Riemann for a corner kick, that was important!
72´ Antwi-Adjei makes his way towards Gikiewicz, but he doesn’t manage to outplay the FCA keeper. Would have been offside anyway.
73´ Another two substitutions for VfL. Osei-Tutu and Osterhage are sent on for Antwi-Adjei and Stafylidis.
74´ Still a thrilling match. Next chance for Augsburg, but Gamboa clears the ball in a very powerful way.
76´ One counterattack follows the next one. Förster’s cross is imprecisely. Tossed chance.
80´ Ten minutes to go. Let’s go, lads!
82´ Another two substitutions for VfL. Masovic and Janko in, Stöger and Gamboa out. Changing to back five now.
84´ Corner Augsburg. Cleared.
89´ Niederlechner dribbels into the box, but his effort from a narrow angle misses the goal.
90´ Five minutes of additional time!
90´+1 First bookings. Jordi and Berisha both pick up a yellow card.
90´+4 Riemann saves for another corner kick.
90´+5 Gikiewicz also enters the VfL box, but we can clear!
Full-time: YESSSS! What a feeling, the first away win of the season! Hugely important three points that keep us close to the spots that save us from being relegated.
The Bundesliga takes a break until mid January. Our first test match during the break fort he world cup is against Karlsruhe SC (kick-off: Saturday, 10th December, 13:00 CET).
VfL Bochum 1848: Riemann – Gamboa (82‘ Janko), Ordets, Lampropoulos, Soares, Losilla, Stafylidis (73‘ Osterhage), Stöger (82‘ Masovic), Antwi-Adjei (73‘ Osei-Tutu), Hofmann, Zoller (64‘ Förster)
Goal: 0-1 Antwi-Adjei (58‘)
Thomas Letsch (Head coach VfL Bochum 1848): It turned out to be exactly the match we expected. It was a very intense game, there were many second balls and many duels. We struggled in the first few minutes, but then got into the match better and better from around the tenth minute onwards. We were much more aggressive, won the ball well and created dangerous situations. We were clearly the better team and should have lead at half-time. In the second half, we again controlled the game at the beginning but after taking the lead were lucky that the penalty didn't go in. But you can't win without luck. The team fought hard and threw themselves into every duel. I'm glad that we finally got our rewards away from home. It was a deserved victory and I'm happy for us that we can go home with a different feeling.
Enrico Maaßen (Head coach FC Augsburg): We had very different plans for the game today. We started very well, were very powerful and very determined. We had two dangerous situations right at the beginning. But you have to say that the two changes due to injuries didn't do us any good. Those were two important players. After that, we lost the plot a bit and didn't manage to stay in the match. The first half clearly belonged to Bochum.
After the break, we adjusted a few things. Then we conceded an unfortunate goal and missed the penalty. We tried a lot after that, but the ball wouldn't find the net. What we have to blame ourselves for today is that we were very erratic and wasted a lot of simple passes.
Christopher Antwi-Adjei: I had a few chances today, but didn't convert many. But one led to a goal and that was enough in the end. I'm extremely happy for the team. The ball ends up in goal and now everyone is happy. We knew very well that it would be difficult in Augsburg if we weren't at our best. I can only compliment the team, we defended very well. Augsburg just couldn't score today, and we're delighted with our success.
Simon Zoller: We played a very disciplined away game and got the win over the line today. The victory is extremely important for us and it is deserved at the end of the day. For the neutral spectator it was probably not a beautiful game, but it was gritty. We now have 13 points. That's fine for where we're coming from and a good finish today. We adapted to Augsburg's style of play, almost copied it. It was rather hectic at the end, but we were more aggressive and earned ourselves the win.