After the leap onto the European stage, 1. FC Köln is not really making any headway in the league. Less than 72 hours after the acclaimed qualification for the Conference League, coach Steffen Baumgart’s team with a majority scored a very lucky 0-0 against VfB Stuttgart. Cologne remains unbeaten after the fourth match day – but has been waiting for a win since the first round.
VfB is still completely without a threesome, who missed three big chances through Silas alone and once again didn’t reward themselves for a good game. In addition, Luca Pfeiffer saw red in the second half for foul play (56′), coach Pellegrino Matarazzo had to go to the stands for complaining with yellow-red (72′).
A curious series continued for Cologne: In the fourth Bundesliga game, FC benefited from a red card for the opponent for the third time. The recent performances in the play-offs of the Conference League against the Hungarian FC Fehervar caused a lot of strain. And so Baumgart brought the seventh different starting eleven against Stuttgart in the seventh competitive game of the season.
However, VfB were forced to make a change – striker Sasa Kalajdzic was no longer part of the squad, and the Austrian is probably about to move to Wolverhampton Wanderers. Left-back Borna Sosa, on the other hand, who was also being courted, was in the starting XI.
And driven by the strong Croatian, Stuttgart got off to an impressive start. Captain Wataru Endo made a dangerous save after just 24 seconds, a little later Cologne goalkeeper Marvin Schwäbe had to defuse a header from Konstantinos Mavropanos (5′).
VfB Stuttgart: Luca Pfeiffer sees red
VfB got a few corner kicks, while Cologne hardly got out from behind – the visitors’ pressing was effective and the game forward was purposeful. FC, on the other hand, built up, quite unusually, hardly any effective pressure and let themselves be overplayed again and again. So once again Schwäbe had to save his team with a very strong reflex against Silas (22′).
And although Cologne found their own powerful game after about half an hour, Silas appeared free in front of Schwäbe twice more – and the goalkeeper won again (38./48.). Shortly after the break, the guest should have been in the lead long ago.
Pfeiffer’s hard attack against Timo Hübers then changed the balance of power numerically, but both teams remained a goal threat. Mavropanos missed another big chance for Stuttgart (81′).
1. FC Cologne vs. VfB Stuttgart: The data for the game