Sunday, September 26th 2021
VfB and VfL have been without a win for weeks
Stuttgart and Bochum do not find a winner
For more than four weeks, promoted VfL Bochum has been waiting for the second victory of this Bundesliga season. But there are no three-pointers against VfB Stuttgart – and the Swabians have been waiting a week longer for a sense of achievement. In the end there is a lot of struggle and little profit.
Bundesliga returnees VfL Bochum is stuck in the table cellar early on. Eight days after the 7-0 record defeat at Bayern Munich, the Westphalians did not make it past 0-0 against VfB Stuttgart, who had also started weakly, and are relegated with only four points from the first six games.
The Swabians, who only got two points from the last five games, only have one point more on the account. At least both teams were able to stop the flood of goals conceded in recent weeks in front of 15,300 spectators. Not much is offensive: Without the injured striker Simon Zoller, who has been involved in all four goals so far, Bochum lacks penetration. Stuttgart also sorely missed attackers Sasa Kalajdzic and Silas Katompa Mvumpa.
After the highest Bundesliga defeat in the club’s history, Bochum’s coach Thomas Reis switched to four positions – mainly on the defensive. His VfB colleague Pellegrino Matarazzo was able to reinstate defender Waldemar Anton after being suspended from the red, swapped a total of three players compared to the 1: 3 against Bayer Leverkusen and switched to a back four.
Mavropanos’ hit is withdrawn
“To eat up the opponents in the penalty area”, demanded Matarazzo of his defensive players before kick-off at DAZN, after he had called for “absolute consistency in defending” during the week after conceding twelve goals in the first five games. Reis wanted to see “another face” from his team.
Even if Stuttgart had the first chance with a header from Konstantinos Mavropanos (4th), the will to make amends at VfL could be felt under the eyes of ex-Bochum player Leon Goretzka. Especially on the left wing with the fast Gerrit Holtmann, the Bochumers kept coming behind the VfB chain, but as in the 1: 3 against Hertha BSC, the flanks lacked accuracy.
The clearly better players from Stuttgart had problems with the aggressiveness of the hosts. The first really successful offensive combination was achieved by VfL, but Eduard Löwen failed because of keeper Florian Müller (18th). It was the only one in the first half, despite the Bochumers increasing their play.
Matarazzo reacted and brought two new offensive forces in Chris Führich and Erik Thommy in the second half. Führich promptly did the preparatory work for the supposed lead, but Mavropanos’ goal was withdrawn after video evidence due to handball (55th). Suddenly the chances increased on both sides and the entertainment value increased.