Cercle Brügge FC
FCA drew their second friendly at their training camp in Malta after a 3-3 draw with Belgian side Cercle Brugge. The game swung from one way to the other with Augsburg eventually earning themselves a draw.
Martin Schmidt put out a completely different starting XI to the one that played against Hibernians. Newcomer Eduard Löwen earned his start after his great performance against the Maltese side which saw him grab a goal and an assist.
It was an open game right from the beginning as both sides tried to look for a way through. A free kick from Marco Richter went just over the bar (6’) before Kylian Hazard went up the other end to threaten but his shot went just wide of the mark (9’). Shortly after that it was the Belgians who went in front. Kevin hoggas got between a couple of defenders and slotted home past a helpless Tomas Koubek to give Cercle a 1-0 lead (12’). FCA were unlucky not to equalise shortly after as Marco Richter struck the bar from distance (17’).
All in all the game was lacking a finishing touch, whether that was from Florian Niederlechner’s shot (20’) or from Brugge’s Lassana Coulibaly at the other end (22’). After just over half an hour though, the ball finally ended up in the net with Rani Khedira bringing down a long pass from Eduard Löwen and slotting home nicely to even the game out at 1-1 (33’). FCA really started to show a bit more desire then, and a bit more tempo. Niederlechner met his match, however, in Brugge keeper Mouez Hassen (35’) before Phillip Max went close just before the break (44’).
Shortly after the break, Frederik Jensen was brought on in place of Ruben Vargas (51’) and the Finn got stuck in to the action straight away. A poor pass out from Brugge’s substitute goalkeeper Guillaume Hubert fell straight into the path of Jensen who had no problem firing home from short distance to put Augsburg in front (52’). Cercle looked for a quickly reply, but Adrien Bongiovanni’s shot missed the target (54’), before Koubek was called into action to stop Lyle Foster from scoring (57’).
The Belgians were firmly in control and were a whisker away from equalising themselves: a strike from Hoggas hit the underside of the bar but managed to stay out (65’). A little later, however, Koubek was finally beaten as FCA couldn’t get the ball away from their own box and Christie-Davies struck from around the penalty spot to make it 2 a piece (68’).
The game then became even more open and Cercle took advantage to edge themselves in front. After a break down in the build up play, Augsburg couldn’t clear their lines decisively enough and although Koubek managed to keep out the first shot from Christie-Davies, he was powerless to stop the follow up from Vitinho (74’). It was then Augsburg’s turn to try and get themselves back in the game and they did just that as Jensen slotted in coolly at the near post (84’). Seconds later he could have won it for the Fuggerstädter but he only managed to hit the side netting.
So that’s how it stayed – 3-3. Augsburg will look ahead to their first game back in the Bundesliga on Saturday 18th January, as they host Borussia Dortmund.