The Hard Tackle presents you a summary of Matchday 4 of the 2018-19 Bundesliga season, as another weekend of exciting action unfolded.
Bundesliga once again kept us at the edge of our seats thanks to an exhilarating matchday that saw a series of surprising results transpiring across the weekend.
Bayern Munich continued their perfect start to the season with a comfortable win over Schalke, leaving the Royal Blues languishing at the bottom of the table. However, title challengers Borussia Dortmund and RB Leipzig stuttered against Hoffenheim and Eintracht Frankfurt, respectively, with both sides mustering only a draw from their respective matches.
Hertha Berlin caused a huge upset this weekend, recording a victory over Borussia Monchengladbach to climb up to second spot on the league table. But, things didn’t work out as well for Augsburg and Hannover, both of whom were defeated. Nurnberg, however, will be happy to have registered their first win in the German top
–flight since 2011.
Hertha were not the only ones who caused an upset this weekend, as Freiburg downed Wolfsburg, who were regarded as one of the best performing teams in the initial stages of the season prior to the game. And finally, Vfb Stuttgart and Fortuna Dusseldorf played out the only 0-0 draw of the matchday while Bayer Leverkusen registered their first win of the campaign in a hard fought battle with FSV Mainz.
Here’s a complete overview of the Matchday 4 of the 2018-19 Bundesliga season as it transpired this weekend.
Friday: Ron-Robert Zieler saves Stuttgart against dangerous Dusseldorf
As iterated earlier, VfB Stuttgart and Fortuna Dusseldorf played out the only 0-0 draw from this weekend’s set of matches. But, don’t let the scoreline fool you for it was an intense match chock full of drama and excitement.
Much to the surprise of the neutrals, however, it was Dusseldorf who dominated the game for the most part against a Stuttgart side who were still looking for their first win of the campaign. The newly promoted Dusseldorf made 19 attempts on goal compared to Stuttgart’s 10, thanks to a spirited second-half performance that almost took Stuttgart by storm.
Friday: Ron-Robert Zieler saves Stuttgart against dangerous Dusseldorf
As iterated earlier, VfB Stuttgart and Fortuna Dusseldorf played out the only 0:0 draw from this weekend’s set of matches. But, don’t let the scoreline fool you for it was an intense match chockfull of drama and excitement.
Much to the surprise of the neutrals, however, it was Dusseldorf who dominated the game for the most period against a Stuttgart side who were still looking for their first win of the campaign. The newly promoted Dusseldorf made 19 attempts on goal compared to Stuttgart’s 10, thanks to a spirited second-half performance that almost took Stuttgart by storm.
In fact, Die Schwaben were very very lucky to get away with one point after being dominated throughout the second half. Fortunately for them, however, Ron-Robert Zieler, came to the rescue, making a series of stunning saves to deny the opposition from scoring. The former Leicester City keeper made seven saves in total but will definitely expect better output from his defenders in the upcoming matches.
Saturday: Hertha splurge huge surprise, Dortmund stutter, James Rodriguez masterclass and much more.
In fact, Die Schwaben were very very lucky to get away with one point after being dominated throughout the second half. Fortunately for them, however, Ron-Robert Zieler, came to the rescue, making a series of stunning saves to deny the opposition from scoring. The former Leicester City goalkeeper made seven saves in all but will definitely expect better output from his defenders in the upcoming matches.
Saturday: Hertha splurge a huge surprise, Dortmund stutter, James Rodriguez masterclass and much more.
Hertha Berlin have become the main talking point of the season so far, thanks to their incredible start to this new campaign. Coming into Matchday 4 on the back of two wins in three matches, the club from the capital splurged another huge upset by defeating Borussia Monchengladbach 4-2 at the Olympiastadion.
Hertha captain Vedad Ibisevic was the star of the show, as he scored a brace and led the line brilliantly against the Foals. The former Stuttgart striker scored the all-important equaliser around the half-hour mark after his side initially trailed to a Thorgan Hazard strike in the 29th minute.
While Valentino Lazaro complemented Ibisevic’s goal with a 34th-minute strike to hand Hertha the advantage, the veteran striker doubled his side’s advantage later in the second half. Ondrej Duda was once again impressive, featuring as the attacking midfielder. The Slovak made a couple of key passes and most importantly, netted Hertha’s fourth goal of the evening. He scores when he wants indeed.
While Hertha Berlin looked sharp, title challengers Borussia Dortmund once again stuttered as they were held to a 1-1 draw by TSG Hoffenheim. The Black and Yellows were disappointing in attack, lacking any kind of end product in the final third. The likes of Marco Reus, Marius Wolf and Shinji Kagawa continued to struggle with Wolf, in particular, failing to provide any sort of spark in attack.
In the end, Hoffenheim netted the opener just before half-time when Joelinton struck his first goal of the season with an excellent finish. The Brazilian caused a lot of havoc on the right flank throughout the first half and his deserved goal just before the break came as a sigh of relief for Julian Nagelsmann.
The hosts thought they doubled their lead soon after the restart through Ermin Bicakcic. But, the goal was disallowed after VAR revealed that the defender was offside. Just when it looked like Hoffenheim had done enough to secure a hard-fought win though, on came Christian Pulisic with a simple tap in in the 84th minute to save the day for Dortmund.
In the other afternoon matches on Saturday, Wolfsburg were taken to the cleaners by a clinical Freiburg who scored three goals past the Wolves defence. Roland Sallai was the man of the moment when he scored his first goal for his new club on his Bundesliga debut. The 21-year-old also provided a lot of trouble for the opposition defence thanks to marauding runs into the final third.
Werder Bremen, on the other hand, bounced back to winning ways after securing a hard-fought 3-2 win over FC Augsburg while Hannover 96 continued their disappointing start to the season by losing 2-0 against newly promoted Nurnberg.
Max Kruse starred for Bremen, scoring the all-important opener in the 34th minute, thanks largely to a delightful ball in from Florian Kainz. Bremen then doubled their lead through Maximilian Eggestein, whose crisp shot from outside of the box was right from the top drawer.
Augsburg were quick to respond, however, pulling one back through Ja-Cheol Koo in added time of the first half before levelling the scoreline just after the restart. However, Bremen’s win should be attributed to former Everton man Davy Klaassen, who made full use of Fabian Giefer’s catastrophic error to seal all three points for the Northern giants.
As for Nurnberg, an unfortunate own goal from Waldemar Anton and a Tories Knoll strike in quick succession helped them record their first top-flight win since 2011.
And finally, in the prime-time fixture, Bayern Munich destroyed a hapless Schalke side to retain their place at the top of the table. James Rodriguez was the star of the show, producing a thumping header in the ninth minute to score the opener whilst causing a lot of threat for the opposing defence throughout the game.
The Colombian was excellent alongside Robert Lewandowski, who continued his scoring run with a 64th-minute penalty to seal all three points for the Bavarians.
Sunday: Leverkusen secure first win of the campaign, Eintracht hold Leipzig
Bayer Leverkusen’s first win of the campaign was one of the talking points of this matchday. Die Werkself were coming into Matchday 4 on the back of three straight defeats in the Bundesliga, prior to this fixture. But, an excellent all-round performance against Mainz saw them register a morale-boosting win, which will surely help them get their season back on track.
Youngster Kai Havertz scored the only goal of the game with a thumping header in the 62nd minute. But, Leverkusen’s Jonathan Tah will consider himself lucky to get away with a sloppy error. After all, it was his mistake, which enabled Robin Quaison to find the back of the net just after the restart. But, thanks to VAR, the goal was disallowed after replays revealed that the ball had hit Quaison’s arm.
And in the final match of the weekend, Leipzig rocked horns with Eintracht Frankfurt, in what promised to be a fascinating encounter. While we did witness a few promising moments, the scoreline wasn’t satisfying at all as both sides played out a relatively boring 1-1 draw.
Gelson Fernandes handed Eintracht the lead in the 26th minute from an easy finish inside the box. But, Leipzig came back into the game from nowhere when Emil Forsberg converted his penalty just after the restart to level the scoreline.
Following the equaliser though, neither side was able to find any spark in attack, with both being fairly content with a 1-1 draw, especially after coming on the back of strenuous Europa League fixtures in midweek.