Professionals | 27/08/2021

The Number Crunch: Home against Bochum

1. FC Köln play host to VfL Bochum on Saturday afternoon. A large piece of Bundesliga culture returns to the league after an 11-year absence, and the Ruhrpott club have already made their mark this season. Here are 10 stats and facts ahead of the match.

No team has scored more headed goals this season than 1. FC Köln. Steffen Baumgart’s side have crossed more times than any other team in the league (30) and that has produced four goals, three of which have come from headers.

Modeste making presence felt

Anthony Modeste has scored in back-to-back Bundesliga games for the first time since the end of the 2019-20 season. The Frenchman last found the back of the net in consecutive matches against Leipzig and Augsburg in June 2020.

FC are on the verge of a milestone against VfL Bochum. Should Steffen Baumgart’s men find the back of the net, it will be FC’s 100th Bundesliga goal against the Ruhrpott outfit. Paul Scheermann scored the first Bundesliga goal between the sides in 1971. 

FC have been relatively dominant in home Bundesliga matches against Bochum. In the 29 fixtures to date in Müngersdorf, FC have come out on top in 21 of those meetings. Bochum have won just once in Köln, back in April 2004.

Whilst Ellyes Skhiri’s ability to cover ground has never been in doubt, he now has a companion in red and white. Dejan Ljubicic leads the Bundesliga this season in distance covered, having totalled 12.9km per game. Ellyes Skhiri is slightly behind on 12.6km, as he aims to defend his crown from last season.

There are familiar faces on both sides of the divide this weekend. Elvis Rexhbecaj and Simon Zoller will return to Köln, with Rexhbecaj making his first appearance in Müngersdorf since the end of his loan. Uwe Gospodarek will also take on his former employers this weekend.

Steffen Baumgart and Thomas Reis face off for the first time as Bundesliga head coaches this weekend. The pair know each other well, having gone through their coaching badges together in 2014-15.

Bochum back in the big time

After playing their first Bundesliga home game for 4,123 days, Bochum began with a win against 1. FSV Mainz 05. It is their first Bundesliga win since the 2:1 triumph against TSG Hoffenheim on 13th February 2010 – 4,215 days ago.

Manuel Riemann has picked up from where he left off in the 2. Bundesliga. The Bochum shot-stopper managed to save a penalty on his Bundesliga debut and has saved 92% of the shots he has faced thus far – the highest ratio in the league.

Armel Bella Kotchap also made his first appearance in the top-flight against Mainz and showed just why he is so highly rated. The young defender completed 90% of his passes and won 83% of his challenges – the highest of any player in the Bundesliga this term.

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Total table
61. FSV Mainz 0510
71. FC Köln9
81. FC Union Berlin9