Stindl’s last-minute equaliser earns a point in Leverkusen
Borussia Mönchengladbach rounded off matchday 33 in the Bundesliga by coming from two goals down to earn a 2-2 draw away at Bayer 04 Leverkusen. Jonas Hofmann and then Lars Stindl in the 90th minute were both able to take advantage of defensive mistakes.
30,200 spectators were at a sold-out BayArena and saw a commanding display from the home side in the first half. Leverkusen converted their first chance after quarter of an hour to take the lead through Amine Adli, and Kerem Demirbay doubled their advantage five minutes later. The Foals improved, but couldn’t find a response before the break. Borussia were then handed a route back into the game after 58 minutes when a loose back-pass allowed Jonas Hofmann to steal the ball from the goalkeeper and score. It was a much more even game now and Borussia came agonisingly close to equalising through substitute Lars Stindl, before yet another defensive blackout from Bayer 04 did allow the Gladbach captain to level the scores in the 90th minute. There was also a late red card for the home side after Piero Hincapie recklessly fouled Julian Weigl.
Head coach Daniel Farke made four changes to the side that started last weekend in Dortmund. Ramy Bensebaini missed out through suspension, while Florian Neuhaus, Hannes Wolf and Nathan Ngoumou dropped to the bench. That meant there were starts for Luca Netz, Christoph Kramer, Ko Itakura and a fit again Marcus Thuram. Alongside Bensebaini, Borussia continued to be without number one Jonas Omlin due to muscular problems.
15’: Bayer 04 go ahead with their first chance. Hincapie zips a through ball into space behind the defence and Adli runs onto it before slipping a shot through the legs of Olschowsky. 1-0 to Leverkusen.
20’: Another goal. Frimpong crosses to the front post where Demirbay just manages to get his head to the ball before Olschowsky can punch it away, and his shot finds the target. 2-0 to Leverkusen.
28’: Palacios turns and fires after possession falls his way following a corner, but the ball trickles wide of the post and to safety.
32’: A first good piece of link-up play from the Foals opens up a chance for Lainer to shoot. Hradecky is able to the make the save down low, but the Austrian was in an offside position anyway.
34’: Hofmann’s free-kick is whipped into the box and Thuram climbs highest to meet it, only for his effort to fly a yard or two wide.
39’: A curling shot from Hofmann should be fairly routine for Hradecky, although he almost fumbles the ball. Lainer was ready to tap in a rebound, but the goalkeeper recovers.
41’: A big chance goes begging for Leverkusen. Adli is denied one-on-one by Olschowsky, although the rebound falls to Diaby, who completely skies a volley.
45+1’: Weigl’s ball in behind finds the run of Netz, whose curling effort is narrowly wide of the mark.
58’: A goal back for Borussia. Bakker’s wayward back-pass is too difficult to control for Hradecky. Hofmann is able to latch onto the heavy touch and quickly fires into the empty net. 2-1.
60’: Almost an immediate reply. Diaby is given too much space on the edge of the box and only just fires wide of the left-hand post.
68’: Koné has a pop from distance, although it’s a reasonably simple catch for Hradecky.
85’: A huge chance to equalise. Lainer’s cross into the middle finds Stindl all alone, but his first-time shot goes the wrong side of the upright.
90’: A late equaliser! Amiri wants to play a safe pass back to his goalkeeper, however, he doesn’t notice that Thuram is stood immediately in front of Hradecky. The Frenchman gratefully receives the pass and lays off for Stindl to finish. 2-2.
90+5’: Red card for Leverkusen. Hincapie recklessly goes in studs up against Weigl and is sent off.
Leverkusen: Hradecky – Tapsoba, Tah, Hincapie – Frimpong, Demirbay, Palacios, Bakker, Wirtz (72’ Amiri) – Diaby (84’ Hlozek), Adli (67’ Azmoun) // Unused subs: Pentz, Fosu-Mensah, Sinkgraven, Azhil, Mbamba, Hudson-Odoi
Borussia: Olschowsky – Friedrich, Elvedi, Itakura– Lainer (86’ Herrmann), Netz (86’ Ngoumou) – Weigl, Koné (76’ Plea), Hofmann, Kramer (64’ Stindl) – Thuram// Unused subs: Sippel, Jantschke, Scally, Neuhaus, Wolf
Goals: 1-0 Adli (15’), 2-0 Demirbay (20’), 2-1 Hofmann (58’), 2-2 Stindl (90’)
Attendance: 30,200 (sold-out)
Yellow cards: Demirbay, Palacios /Koné, Friedrich, Stindl
Red cards: Hincapie (90+5’)
Referee: Daniel Siebert