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Borussia well beaten in Leverkusen

The first away game of the new Bundesliga season ended in a heavy 4-0 defeat to Bayer Leverkusen, with four Gladbach players also coming off injured.

It was a disastrous start for the Foals in front of 15,000 fans at the BayArena, going 2-0 down inside eight minutes. An unlucky own goal by Yann Sommer opened the scoring (3’), before Patrik Schick doubled Leverkusen’s advantage (8’). Borussia needed some time to recover from the quickfire double and even suffered further setbacks when Marcus Thuram and Stefan Lainer were forced off injured. The Austrian was hurt when fouled in the box by Mitchel Bakker, but Lars Stindl failed to convert the resulting penalty. Borussia’s bad luck held firm in the second half as substitute Ramy Bensebaini deflected a Moussa Diaby shot into the bottom corner to make it 3-0 (55’), before Matthias Ginter and Alassane Plea also had to make way due to injury. Borussia tried their best to find a way back into the game, but it clearly wasn’t their day, a notion topped off when Nadiem Amiri wrapped up a 4-0 Leverkusen win in the 87th minute.

TEAM NEWS

Head coach Adi Hütter made two changes to the side that drew against FC Bayern, with Jonas Hofmann and Marcus Thuram coming into the team for Patrick Herrmann and Hannes Wolf. Yann Sommer was in goal behind a back-four of Stefan Lainer, Matthias Ginter, Nico Elvedi and Joe Scally. Christoph Kramer partnered Florian Neuhaus in defensive midfield, with Jonas Hofmann, Lars Stindl and Marcus Thuram supporting lone striker Alassane Plea.

While Denis Zakaria wasn’t deemed fit enough to be involved, injuries kept out Manu Koné (knee), Breel Embolo (thigh) and Mamadou Doucouré (Achilles).

FIRST-HALF HIGHLIGHTS

3’: An unlucky start for the Foals. Bakker’s low shot from outside the box strikes the post, bounces back into Sommer’s legs, and he can’t react in time to stop the ball from crossing the line. 1-0 to Leverkusen.

 8’: It’s a second already. Diaby beats Scally down the right flank and pulls the ball back into the centre, where Schick finds space to fire a shot into the far corner. 2-0 to Leverkusen.

15’: The first real chance for Borussia as Hofmann tries his luck from range, but fortune isn’t on his side as the ball clips the outside of the post on its way out for a goal kick.

39’: Schick is in one-on-one with Sommer after a misjudged long ball. Luckily, the Gladbach keeper is able to turn the ball behind for a corner with his feet.

43’: This cannot be happening… Bakker brings down Lainer on the edge of the box. Referee Aytekin initially gives a free-kick, but VAR awards a penalty, only for Stindl to see his spot-kick saved by Hradecky.

SECOND-HALF HIGHLIGHTS

48’: Bensebaini delivers a cross to the back post where a somewhat surprised Neuhaus can’t keep his header down.

55’: Bayer 04 look out of sight now. Bakker’s cross from the left finds Diaby in space, and his shot takes a huge deflection off Bensebaini towards the bottom corner and well out of Sommer’s reach. 3-0 to Leverkusen.

65’: Almost four. A whipped cross from Frimpong finds its way to Schick, whose shot rattles the woodwork.

74’: There’s half a yard for Stindl following a corner, but he can’t keep his effort down.

84’: A superb save from Sommer to keep out Diaby, who was completely on his own in front of goal.

87’: Leverkusen have their fourth at last. Wirtz lays the ball off to Amiri, who volleys at goal through a crowd of bodies. Sommer sees it late and can’t get enough of a hand behind the shot to stop it from going in. 4-0 to Leverkusen.

MATCH FACTS

Bayer 04: Hradecky - Frimpong, Kossounou, Tah, Bakker – Aranguiz (84’ Baumgartlinger), Palacios (68’ Andrich), Paulinho (68’ Amiri), Demirbay, Diaby - Schick

Borussia: Sommer – Lainer (45+1’ Bensebaini), Ginter (63’ Netz), Elvedi, Scally – Kramer, Neuhaus – Hofmann, Stindl, Thuram (19’ Wolf) – Plea (63’ Herrmann)

Goals: 1-0 Sommer O.G. (3’), 2-0 Schick (8’), 3-0 Diaby (55’), 4-0 Amiri (87’)

Attendance: 15,105 (sold-out)

Yellow cards: Demirbay, Bakker, Paulinho, Diaby – Kramer, Wolf

Referee: Deniz Aytekin

21.08.2021

Marcus Thuram had to come off injured after only 13 minutes
Jonas Hoffmann, who was one of two changes to the starting XI, struck the outside of the post in the first half
Stefan Lainer went off injured after a foul in the box, but Lars Stindl wasn't able to convert the penalty

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