The Bundesliga returned in style for Gladbach on matchday 12, with the Foals galloping to a 4-1 win over Hannover 96 at BORUSSIA-PARK.
48,692 spectators saw the hosts get off to a disastrous start at BORUSSIA-PARK. Niclas Füllkrug flicked a long ball on, Bobby Wood raced in behind the defence and Yann Sommer was unable to stop him firing Hannover into a 1-0 lead after 22 seconds. Dieter Hecking’s team responded fantastically though. Thorgan Hazard levelled the scores in the seventh minute, curling a sumptuous finish into the top corner with his left foot after some quick-thinking from Florian Neuhaus have him space to shoot. A nasty head collision with Hannover’s Sarenren-Bazee sadly forced Matthias Ginter off on a stretcher shortly before half time, but his replacement Tony Jantschke had an instant impact. Borussia’s Fußballgott dug out a ball over the top under pressure, and while many on the pitch were expecting a free-kick, Michael Lang was awake to latch on to the pass beyond the defence and nutmegged Michael Esser from a tight angle for his first Bundesliga goal.
Hannover had offered little threat since their opening goal, and Borussia carried on controlling the game in the second 45. Hazard was pulling the strings throughout and he almost toyed with the visiting defence, before delivering a delightful cross for Lars Stindl to slam home on the volley, making it 3-1 just before the hour mark. Complete control turned into domination in the 77th minute, when substitute Denis Zakaria was sent through on goal by Tobias Strobl’s wonderful through ball, and he curled the ball into the far corner to wrap up a magnificent 4-1 win to move Borussia back up to second place in the Bundesliga table.
Head coach Dieter Hecking backed the same starting XI that won 3-1 in Bremen prior to the international break. Yann Sommer started in goal, Michael Lang, Matthias Ginter, Nico Elvedi and Oscar Wendt made up the back four, Tobias Strobl sat behind Florian Neuhaus and Lars Stindl in the midfield three, and Alassane Plea led the line with Thorgan Hazard and Jonas Hofmann either side of him.
Only Christoph Kramer (ankle) and Mamadou Doucouré (thigh) missed the match through injury, although Fabian Johnson was also ruled out with a cold.