Gregoritsch’s early goal not enough
FC Augsburg began the second half of 2021/22 with a defeat to TSG Hoffenheim. The final score was 3-1, as the hosts scored two crucial goals shortly before half time.
The game began with a moment of panic for FCA. Not even one minute was on the clock before Munas Dabbur thought he had given TSG a very early lead, but referee Benjamin Cortus ruled the goal out due to a handball in the build up (1’). Instead it was Augsburg who celebrated scoring the opener. Michael Gregoritsch got on the end of Arne Maier’s corner and had a free header on Hoffenheim’s goal and took his chance to give FCA the lead and score his third goal of the season (5’).
Hoffenheim pressed for a swift reply in what was a very entertaining opening to the match. Ihlas Bebou shot just wide (7’), Chris Richards shot just over from close range (9’) before the game started to calm down somewhat. FCA sat back after taking the lead and allowed the hosts most of the ball. Although they had a lot of possession, Augsburg’s regimented and alert defence did not allow the hosts much room for opportunities.
TSG surprisingly found an equaliser as the first half drew to a close. David Raum picked out Ihlas Bebou with a cross who turned home from close range for 1-1 (38’). But they didn’t stop there. Just six minutes later it was Kevin Akpoguma’s turn to cross in to Bebou who chipped it over Rafał Gikiewicz to give the hosts the lead (44’).
Hoffenheim were the better side at the start of the second half, but they were unable to create any real chances. Weinzierl made a double change at the hour mark, bring on Florian Niederlechner as well as Pepi, who made his Bundesliga debut (60’).
FCA found it tough to create good chances of their own. Niederlechner did not get enough contact on the ball as he tried a backheel (71’) and second-half substitute Noah Sarenren Bazee could not get on the end of Andre Hahn’s pass (76’). TSG missed a chance to settle things when Christoph Baumgartner’s shot flew past the far post by a whisker (84’). The hosts were able to get a third in injury time on the counter attack as Raum converted Georginio Rutter’s cross from short range to make it 3-1 (90+3’).
And so, it was to be defeat for FCA in their first game of 2022. They welcome Eintracht Frankfurt next Sunday (16th January, 15:30 CET) in their first home match of the year.