After two consecutive away wins, FC Augsburg were beaten 2-0 in Bremen by two late goals on Matchday 16 despite a strong performance from the Fuggerstädters.
Heiko Herrlich made four changes to his team after last weekend’s 4-1 home defeat to VfB Stuttgart. Jeffrey Gouweleeuw returned after serving his yellow card suspension, Mads Pedersen, André Hahn and Alfred Finnbogason were the other ‘new’ faces in the starting eleven. Tobias Strobl and Florian Niederlechner started on the bench, Iago was out with neck pain and Marco Richter was suspended after his sending off last week.
FCA took charge of the game early on, boasting two thirds of possession in the first half, but struggling to find a way through a compact Werder Bremen side. The hosts defended deep in their own half and gave Augsburg little room to play with. The only chance of the first half came courtesy of a poor pass from Marco Friedl, which Alfred Finnbogason moved on to Hahn, who put his shot just wide from a central position (18’).
Bremen came out for the second half with a spring in their step. Maximilian Eggestein tried his luck from distance (46’) and Felix Uduokhai had to block a shot from Jean-Manuel Mbom just minutes later. At the other end, Jiri Pavlenka had to stretch to steer away a Daniel Caligiuri header (50’). With Werder pushing forward a lot more, both teams had more room to create chances. Reece Oxford almost opened the scoring from a corner with his shoulder but his effort went just over the crossbar (63’). Back at the other end, Rafal Gikiewicz made a strong save to deny Josh Sargent (64’).
After sitting back in the first half, Werder began to enjoy the better of the game as time went on. As Augsburg struggled more and more to attack with any danger, Bremen’s pressure grew and grew. In the 84th minute, shortly after two missed opportunities for the hosts, the ball was in the back of FCA’s net. A Felix Agu cross was unintentionally flicked towards the back post by Oxford, where Selassie leapt and stretched to push the ball in from close range. Three minutes later, Werder added another. Romano Schmid found Felix Agu unmarked in front of Gikiewicz. The young Werder man scuffed his shot against his standing foot but watched it sail in past a helpless FCA goalkeeper.
In summary, Augsburg were beaten by a more efficient Werder side. On Wednesday (20 Jan at 20:30 CET), FCA welcome FC Bayern München for the final game of the official ‘half-season’.