A point in the bank and Zoller’s back!

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Another impressive performance! VfL scored one point against Champions League candidates Bayer Leverkusen – which makes a total of 36 points up to now. It was a game at eye level with Bochum having the better chances to score the winner. Even though VfL were quite fortunate when Diaby “missed“ a penalty. In front of a 25,000 crowd Simon Zoller celebrated his comeback in the sold-out Vonovia Ruhrstadion.

Matchday 29 – VfL Bochum 1848 welcomed Bayer 04 Leverkusen on Sunday afternoon. For the first time after more than two years the Vonovia Ruhrstadion was a sell-out again. 25,000 fans, kind of going back to normal. Compared to the 2-1 away win over TSG 1899 Hoffenheim head coach Thomas Reis changed his starting line-up on only one position. Armel Bella Kotchap returned from his yellow card suspension for Erhan Mašović.

Here’s how the game went

1′ Kick-off. Let’s go, lads!

1′ A sold-out Vonovia Ruhrstadion. Great that all of you can be around again!

4′ Not too much happened in the initial four minutes, now the first chance of the match. Paulinho sets up for Schick. The Czech does not hit the ball properly, Riemann not in danger.

5′ Now first effort by VfL, nice move! Toto enters the box after one-two with Pantovic and outplays keeper Hradecky, but the ball is too slow to cross the goal line and can be cleared.

8′ Riemann needs a short treatment after an aerial duel, but the keeper can play on.

9′ Asano – very confident after his brace against Hoffenheim – plays a back-heeled pass to Soares, who centres the ball. Asano gets back in possession, but his shot is blocked.

10′ Freekick by Stafylidis. He can do better. The ball goes wide.

14′ Passes and plays are too imprecisely to create scoring chances in front of the opposing goal – but this is true for both side.

16′ The attacking duo Riemann and Asano almost strikes again. Our keeper plays a through ball right to the Japanese. The situation can be cleared in the nick of time.

17′ Made a mistake and immediately smoothed it out. Bella Kotchap cannot stop Schick on the first attempt, but throws himself into Paulinho’s effort. Well, that’s confidence!

21′ Good attacking play by VfL over four stations. Bella Kotchap, Gamboa, Pantovic, Asano. Ends up as a throw-in, but a decent try.

23′ Schick wins the aerial duel, but the ball goes over the crossbar.

25′ Pantovic! What a chance! Remarkable deep forward pass from Leitsch, Pantovic appears completely alone in front of Hradecky, seems a bit surprised and fails.

27′ Although not everything works out – Pantovic shows a complete commitment. Another attacking play over the right side, his ball into the box is finally picked up by the Leverkusen goalie.

30′ Leverkusen is forced to make their first substitution due to injury. Bakker replaces Tah.

33′ The game calms down. Both teams focus on their defensive play.

36′ Paulinho was almost up and away. Gamboa slides away but is able to block the shot after a powerful sprint!

36′ Shot by Demirbay, but directly towards Riemann.

38′ Polter catches a misplaced pass, but immediately two players block his ways.

41′ Two fantastic tackles from Leitsch, two times Schick is not able to get past our No 29!

42′ Soares hits the crossbar! Our left-back is unchallenged and shows a powerful shot from a 16-metre distance that hits the crossbar! That could’ve been a goal of the month.

45 +2′ Last chance before halftime belongs to VfL. Polter’s header after a sharp cross by Soares misses the target.

Half-time: All square at the break, VfL have looked the better of the two sides.

46′ Re-start. No substitutions on either side.

47′ About a minute played VfL record their next chance. Asano’s long-range shot goes wide.

54′ Asano is fouled by Kossounou. Freekick from a promising position.

55′ The freekick ends up in a corner kick, which causes no danger.

57′ VfL are the better team, a lead wouldn‘t be undeserved.

61′ Now a chance for Leverkusen after a corner kick. Polter clears Kossounou’s header.

62′ Two substitutions for VfL. Holtmann and Löwen are sent on for Pantovic and Rexhbecaj. Let’s go, lads!

63′ The visitors are awarded a penalty kick. Löwen, who was just brought on, fouls Paulinho. Correct decision.

65′ Diaby can convert the penalty. But he slides away and therefore hits the ball twice. The goal does not count! Bad luck for Leverkusen, lucky VfL lads!

66′ Bellarabi replaces Paulinho.

70′ The attendance figure is announced. 25,000, sold out! Thanks for being around!

71′ Asano plays a through pass to Polter who cannot shoot properly. That was a good chance.

72′ Löwen outplays two Leverkusen players, but is stopped shortly before he can shoot.

75′ Again it’s Löwen who causes some trouble in the visitors‘ defence. Stafylidis plays a perfect pass, but the angle gets too narrow for Löwen and the ball goes wide.

77′ Triple substitution for Leverkusen. Alario, Sinkgraven and Palacios replace Bellarabi, Hincapie and Demirbay.

78′ Palacios‘s effort from a long range is harmless.

81′ Standing ovations from the Bochum fans when Simon Zoller returns after his cruciate rupture. Blum is also sent on. Polter and Asano leave the pitch.

86′ Header by Blum. Good effort, but not powerful enough.

87′ Leverkusen still keeps on attacking as well. Andrich‘s shot is blocked, corner kick.

90′ We keep pushing Leverkusen back into their own half. Awesome.

90′ Three minutes of additional time.

90’+1 Zoller’s effort after a cross by Blum misses the target!

90’+3 Bayer with a last freekick, but Manu saves!

Full-time: No goals, but a reasonable match at Castroper Strasse with a well-deserved point for the lads in blue and white. Great pleasure about an impressive performance from VfL, not only for returnee Simon Zoller. On Easter Saturday we can take the next step to ensure staying up when we play away against SC Freiburg (kick-off: Saturday, 16 April, 3:30PM (CET)).

 

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