After enjoying a seemingly secure lead for much of the game, Borussia Mönchengladbach had to rely on their goalkeeper Yann Sommer’s reflexes to thwart Milos Pantovic’s effort in the dying seconds to win 2-1 against VfL Bochum 1848. Danny Blum’s blinder in the 86th minute was too little too late for the Boys in Blue in another close match in the Bundesliga.

For our away match at Borussia Mönchengladbach, flying high after their 5-0 trouncing of Bayern Munich in midweek, VfL Bochum Head Coach Thomas Reis opted to make five changes from our extra-time win over Augsburg last Wednesday. He brought back Riemann, Lampropoulos, Gamboa, Löwen and Asano in place of Esser, Bella Kotchap, Stafylidis, Pantovic and Antwi-Adjei.

Borussia Mönchengladbach took the initiative and had their first opportunity in the 3rd minute when Ginter rose to meet Hofmann’s corner-kick but Riemann collected the ball easily. Two minutes later, another corner found Stindl at the far post with Gamboa making an important block.

In the 12th minute, the hosts took the lead when Scally’s excellent cross from the right found the unmarked Plea in the middle whose header left Riemann rooted to the spot – 1-0.

In the 18th minute, Embolo found himself in a great position but Losilla’s last-gasp tackle saved the visitors.

In the 21st minute, VfL Bochum came close when Holtmann nicked the ball on the left, dribbled forward, and bent a gross onto the foot of Asano in the box but the latter miscued his volley. It took the visitors twelve minutes to come forward again through a Löwen cross but Polter’s tame header was saved by Sommer.

In the 40th minute, after a misunderstanding in the Bochum defence the hosts doubled their lead when Hofmann’s diagonal shot hit the inside of the far post to trickle over the line.

In the 43rd minute, Holtmann raced down the right wing leaving several defenders in his wake before invading the Gladabch box and passing to Polter who could not get his shot in.

After the break, Thomas Reis sent on Stafylidis for Gamboa and Blum for Holtmann. Three minutes later, Polter received the ball in the box but hesitated long enough for Ginter to nick the ball.

In the 53rd minute, Plea fortunately steered his shot wide of the goal and six minutes later, Lampropoulos had to slide into a low cross to prevent Embolo from tapping the ball over the line. The same player was clean through in the 65th minute but his shot went well wide.

In the 70th minute, VfL Bochum managed their first shot on target when Asano let fly on the turn to force a tip-over by Sommer. The ensuing corner from Blum was met by Lampropoulos whose glancing header hit the post. Mašović got to the rebound but the ball went wide.

In the 74th minute, Gladbach seemed to have the match wrapped up when Hofmann had a free run at goal, took the ball past Riemann but saw his shot headed off the line by Soares.

VfL threw on Pantović and Antwi-Adjei for Löwen and Asano with Borussia sending on Wolf for Plea.

Another chance for VfL in the 83rd minute when Rexhbecaj released Antwi-Adjei who could not control his shot. A pattern seemed to be emerging until Blum took a free-kick from the far right corner of the box and bent the into the near top corner – what a beauty!

VfL Bochum were pushing for the equaliser and indeed, in the third minute of injury time, a free-kick from the right was headed on by Losilla into the path of Pantovic who managed to get a shot in from eight yards but Sommer pulled off the save of the match and held on to the three points for Gladbach.

 

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