The game was, as expected, quite open from the get-go. FC and VfB had good early openings but couldn’t quite make the most of opportunities on the break. Stuttgart did go ahead in the 12th minute after Konstantinos Mavropanos was left free in the middle and headed home from a corner. FC almost issued an immediate response but were denied by the offside flag after Joshua Schwirten’s clever finish.
Stuttgart fended off a period of FC pressure before scoring three times in quick succession. Tanguy Coulibaly grabbed a brace in three minutes, producing a fine finish from 20 yards before emphatically rounded off a counter moments later. Mavropanos then rounded off the first-half, heading home from eight yards out after a Coulibaly cross from deep.
FC began the second-half better, getting more of a grip to the game than in the first period and looking more dangerous on the counter. The introduction of Luca Kilian, Tidiane Toure and Linton Maina’s fresh legs pushed FC further forward and the breakthrough came after 68 minutes, as Joshua Schwirten deservedly got on the scoresheet with a controlled strike into the bottom corner.
FC got another goal back shortly before the end. Linton Maina was denied by Fabian Bredlow but Sargis Adamyan was on hand to tap home from close range. Bredlow was able to save from Schwirten’s effort, as FC tried to turn things around before the final whistle. Timo Horn made a late stop to keep out Jose Perea’s free-kick and Samantha Martinez ended the game not long after.
FC will remain in Texas until Wednesday before flying back to Germany. The players will then have a break until 8th December.
1. FC Köln (3-4-1-2): Horn – Soldo, Hübers (Kilian 54‘), Chabot (Finkgräfe 67‘) – Schindler (Toure 54‘), Hector, Strauch, Pedersen – Schiwrten – Tigges (Maina 54‘), Adamyan.
VfB Stuttgart (3-4-1-2): Bredlow – Vagnoman, Mavropanos (Chase 73‘), Stenzel (Aidonis 46‘) – Silas (Tiago Tomas 46‘), Ahamada (di Benedetto 66‘), Millot (Laupheimer 66‘), Coulibaly (Reichardt 73‘) – Egloff (Ulrich 46‘) – Pfeiffer (Kastanaras 46‘), Guirassy (Perea 46‘).
Goals: 0:1, Mavropanos 12‘. 0:2, Coulibaly 28‘. 0:3, Coulibaly 30’. 0:4, Mavropanos 41’. 1:4, Schwirten 68’. 4:2, Adamyan 84’.
Referee: Samantha Martinez (USA).
Booked: Hector (34’).