Professionals | 07/05/2022

European qualification secured!

1. FC Köln fell to defeat against VfL Wolfsburg 1:0 on Saturday afternoon at the RheinEnergieSTADION but still secured their place in European competition for next season.

Team news

Steffen Baumgart made one change from the side that started the win against FC Augsburg last weekend. Salih Özcan replaced Dejan Ljubicic in midfield.

Florian Kohfeldt opted for two alterations following the 1:1 draw against VfB Stuttgart on Saturday. Pavao Pervan and Micky van de Ven replaced Koen Casteels and Jerome Roussillon.

Gerhardt opens the scoring

After the choreo to start the game, the FC players were just as fired up as the atmosphere. Pavao Pervan was called into action within the first three minutes of the game, parrying away Anthony Modeste’s header. Moments later, Benno Schmitz cracked the post from the edge of the box before Modeste nodded over after Jan Thielmann’s chopper-kick cross.

Salih Özcan then burst through the Wolfsburg backline but just before he was ready to pull the trigger, the visitors were able to put in a block. Max Kruse had Wolfsburg’s first real chance of the game but Marvin Schwäbe was able to get down to save. Despite FC’s dominance it was the Wolves who went ahead as Yannick Gerhardt tapped in just before the break.

Pervan prevents the equaliser

The second-half started slower but FC were still the better team. Florian Kainz was denied by another superb stop from Pervan before a Lukas Nmecha goal was chalked off for offside. Moments later the ball rolled agonisingly past the post after a deflection left Pervan stranded. Jonas Hector drilled at his chest from close range, as Pervan held on once more.

Try as FC might, Steffen Baumgart’s men couldn’t find a way past Pervan. Anthony Modeste saw his looping header tipped over the bar. Wolfsburg were largely toothless going forward but an organised defence meant they were able to bring the result over the line.

Despite the loss, defeat for Hoffenheim meant that Steffen Baumgart’s side are now safe in the Bundesliga’s top seven. The chance for UEFA Europa League qualification now rests on the final day against VfB Stuttgart. Kick-off at the Mercedes-Benz-Arena is at 15:30 CEST on Saturday.

Line-ups

1. FC Köln (4-1-3-2): Schwäbe – Schmitz (Schindler 81‘), Kilian (Duda 87‘), Hübers, Hector – Skhiri – Özcan, Uth (Lemperle 87‘), Kainz (Schaub 81‘) – Thielmann (Ljubicic 62‘), Modeste.

VfL Wolfsburg (4-3-3): Pervan – Baku, Lacroix, Brooks, van de Ven (Vranckx 68‘) – Schlager, Arnold, Gerhardt – Wind (Bialek 90+2‘), L. Nmecha (Lukebakio 87‘), Kruse (F. Nmecha 68‘).

Goals: 0:1, Gerhardt 43‘.

Referee: Tobias Stieler (Hamburg).

Booked: L. Nmecha (50’), Bialek (90+4’).

Attendance: 50,000 (sold-out).

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PL.TeamPt.
6Sport-Club Freiburg55
71. FC Köln52
81. FSV Mainz 0546

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