Professionals | 02/12/2017

2-2 against Schalke

FC strike back twice

Peter Stöger’s team were rewarded with a point for a passionate performance in a 2-2 (0-1) draw against FC Schalke 04. Forward Sehrou Guirassy scored twice for the eventually outnumbered FC in Gelsenkirchen. Burgstaller and Harit scored for the hosts.

Pawel Olkowski, Frederik Sorensen and Jannes Horn rotated in for the youngsters Yann Aurel Bisseck and Lukas Klünter as well as for the Peruvian striker Claudio Pizarro. For keeper Timo Horn it was a special match as he appeared in his 100th Bundesliga match.

Burgstaller hits the bar – Osako denied by Fährmann

The in-form hosts dominated the match right from the start, but 1. FC Köln fought passionately and were lucky when Schalke’s Harit found attacker Burgstaller in the box. The former Nuremberg player lofted the ball over Horn from an acute angle, but could only hit the crossbar (7’). FC rarely entered the opposition’s half in the opening minutes, but then Jojic played a fine through ball into the path of Osako, who could not get past Schalke goalkeeper Fährmann in a promising one against one situation (11’).

Schalke’s surprising halftime lead

The match was balanced after these eventful opening stages as both sides were too sloppy in possession. As a result, the only shot on goal was a long-range effort by Schalke’s wide player Oczipka into Horn’s arms (35’). Nobody in the sold-out Veltins-Arena expected a goal when Schalke suddenly took the lead: Sorensen could not make the clearance, Caligiuri was well-positioned and served it perfectly to Burgstaller, who netted easily (36’). The hosts were willing to add a second goal, but Horn fisted Oczipka’s shot away (39’). Thus, FC went into halftime with a narrow one-goal deficit.

Guirassy equalizes

Stöger made a change in defense and opted for Bisseck, who continued for Meré. FC were looking to equalize quickly, but Özcan could not hit the target from the edge of the box (48’). 2 minutes later, Osako won a free kick in midfield. Jojic swung the ball in, Özcan flicked it on, and Guirassy slotted home from within the six-yard box (50’).

The equaliser was like a wake-up call for Stöger’s team, who battled over every inch of the pitch. At the hour mark Guirassy received an accurate Osako pass, turned Fährmann, but his shot from a very acute angle was blocked. Schalke needed time to create their next chance, but Burgstaller could not really threaten Horn’s goal with a flying header (68’). 4 minutes later substitute Embolo found Burgstaller in the box, who saw Harit. The Moroccan midfielder finished with sublime technique into the far corner (72’).

Guirassy scores again

There was no doubt that FC were not willing to give up fighting. Guirassy volleyed the ball on target and Stambouli could only stop the ball with his arm. After checking the screen at the sideline, referee Stieler gave the penalty, which the French striker converted into the bottom right corner (78’). The closing minutes were a real nail-biter for the passionately defending FC. Schalke defender Naldo came close to scoring, but missed the left post with his head (90’). Osako was sent off in stoppage time with a second yellow and FC even had to end the match with only nine outfield players as Bisseck picked up an injury. However, FC held on to the draw and picked up an important point on the road.

Trip to Serbia

1. FC Köln will play Red Star Belgrade on Thursday, 7 December 2017 (21:05) to finish the Europa League group stages before hosting SC Freiburg 3 days later at the RheinEnergieSTADION.

Match Details

FC Schalke 04: Fährmann – Stambouli, Naldo, Nastasic (82’ Schöpf) – McKennie (56’ Goretzka), Meyer – D. Caligiuri, Harit, Oczipka – Konoplyanka (70’ Embolo), Burgstaller

1. FC Köln: T. Horn – Olkowski, Meré (46’ Bisseck), Sorensen, J. Horn, Rausch – Özcan, M. Lehmann – Jojic (72’ Clemens) – Osako, Guirassy (82’ Handwerker)

Goals: 1-0 Burgstaller (36’, D. Caligiuri), 1-1 Guirassy (50’, Özcan), 2-1 Harit (72’, Burgstaller)

Yellow cards: - | Osako (32’)

Second yellow: Osako (90’)

Referee: Tobias Stieler

Attendance: 61,761 (sold out)

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