After the separation from coach Thomas Reis, VfL Bochum stopped their record hunt in the bottom of the table, but did not celebrate their first win of the season on the seventh attempt – despite active support from 1. FC Köln.
An own goal by Benno Schmitz was only enough for the Westphalians to make it 1-1 (1-0) – Bochum remains bottom of the table, but will not be the first club in 60 years of the Bundesliga to start with seven defeats.
Schmitz put Bochum in the lead with his faux pas (9th). Substitute Linton Maina (88th) equalized for the Rhinelanders, who remained unbeaten away from home this season, but missed the leap into the extended top group. VfL, after six rounds the worst team in the history of the Bundesliga, drew a little new hope under interim coach Heiko Butscher.
Six days after the release of the promotion hero and original Bochumer Reis, the feared criticism of the club management was limited. Only a banner with the inscription “Betray our values” showed the displeasure of many fans about the controversial decision. As fervently as ever, the VfL supporters sang Herbert Grönemeyer’s “Bochum” anthem before kick-off, then some of them fogged the entire Ruhr Stadium with pyrotechnics.
“Talk less, do more”, Butscher had demanded before his third assignment as interim coach with the Westphalia. The 42-year-old acted and switched the team to four positions compared to the 1: 3 in the tram duel at Schalke 04, the last game under Reis. Particularly noteworthy: In view of the problems in defence, the U19 coach helped 18-year-old Tim Oermann to make his Bundesliga debut in central defence. The homegrown did its job properly.
Soldo missed the win for 1. FC Köln in injury time
Three days after the 4-2 win in the Conference League against 1. FC Slovacko from the Czech Republic, Cologne coach Steffen Baumgart started the rotation again and exchanged seven players – back to his Bundesliga formation.
The Bochum fans loudly cheered every action of their team – offensively as well as defensively. And the early opening goal, which came about in a most curious way. After a cross from Gerrit Holtmann, FC captain Jonas Hector shot Schmitz in the six-yard box, who deflected the ball into his own goal – Bochum’s attackers were nowhere to be seen.
Cologne responded with furious attacks, but the hosts had the next top-class chance: Holtmann hit the post (19th). On the other side, Ellyes Skhiri headed wide of the goal from three yards (39′).
After the break, the hosts made the game a little more balanced, Cologne was no longer quite as dominant – but accurate through Maina, who tunneled Riemann. Nikola Soldo (90 + 4) missed the huge chance to win in Cologne from a few meters.