VfL Bochum 1848 have extended the Festive Season for their fans by winning their away match with bogey team SSV Jahn Regensburg. Going into the interval with a goalless draw despite dominating the first half, Simon Zoller gave the visitors the lead on 80 minutes with super-sub Thomas Eisfeld doubling the lead with his first touch of the match just before the final whistle. The win takes VfL Bochum to second place in the league table just one point behind leaders Hamburger SV.

VfL Bochum started their first away match of the New Year in freezing temperatures but glaring sunshine with a largely unchanged starting XI, with only the suspended Cristian Gamboa replaced by Herbert Bockhorn. Tom Weilandt returned to the squad from injury and Paul Grave, goalie of our U19s, came in for the injured Patrick Drewes.

In a physical match, our Boys in Floodlight Blue had the better start with the majority of possession and a couple of corners in the opening quarter-hour. After 12 minutes, Bella Kotchap released Holtmann down the wing, who outran the defence but missed the right moment for finding Zoller. Next there were yellow cards shown to Blum for a foul on Weskesser and Stolze, who in turn pulled Zoller down in a tactical foul.

The 20 minute saw a great chance for VfL when, after some clever play from a corner Losilla passed the ball to Zulj who let fly from inside the right side of the box. His shot was blocked by Meyer with the rebound falling for Zoller who saw his effort blocked by the sprawling goalie.

Yellow card for  Gimber after a rash tackle on Tesche after 24 minutes and three minutes later it was the speedy Holtmann again who this time rushed down the right wing but saw his right-footed shot go over the bar. VfL Bochum kept up the pressure by playing a high line and forced a corner on 36 minutes which found Maximilian Leitsch who couldn’t quite get behind the ball for his header. Two minutes later, Tesche invaded the box but could only find the outside of the goal net. Despite another chance for the diligent Holtmann, the first half ended 0-0 with Bochum clearly on the front foot.

SSV Regensburg returned with a more attacking line-up and tried to put more pressure on VfL Bochum now with Bockhorn immediately committing a foul on Besuschkow and contracting a yellow foul. The visitors had to do more defending but did not allow the hosts any clear-cut chances and in the 71 minute it was Holtmann once again who tore open the Regensburg defence with his acceleration but couldn’t find Zoller in the centre.

With the game seemingly moving towards a goalless draw, Thomas Reis introduced fresh legs into his attack by bringing on Pantović and Ganvoula in place of Blum and Holtmann after 74 minutes and it took Pantovic just six minutes to make an impression. The substitute, who had scored the winning goal last week, dribbled his way to the edge of the box and forced a foul by Elvedi with  Žulj reacting instantly by playing a through ball to Zoller who slotted the ball home underneath goalie Meyer after 80 minutes – 1-0 to VfL Bochum!

VfL Bochum tried to run down the clock by introducing Mašović for Žulj and Eisfeld for Zoller now, but after the only mistake by the otherwise impeccable Bella Kotchap, Regensburg forward Becker was thwarted by Riemann. But this was not the final chord in an exciting match because it was super-sub Pantović again who drew another foul on the edge of the box. Up stepped the other sub, Thomas Eisfeld, to bend an absolute beauty over the wall with his first touch of the game – 2-0 to VfL Bochum!

The away win lifts VfL Bochum to second in the league before our home match versus 1. FC Nürnberg at the Vonovia Ruhrstadion next Saturday at 1:00 p.m..

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