Borussia Mönchengladbach found themselves in a real cup fight away at SV Sandhausen, but managed to battle their way into the second round with a 1-0 win courtesy of Marcus Thuram’s header.
Kick-off was delayed by 45 minutes in Sandhausen after heavy rain, and the weather certainly played a role in the football being produced by both sides. Loose touches and passes meant there was little fluidity to the game. The first real chance of the game after 19 minutes saw Marcus Thuram get away from his marker and brilliantly head in a debut goal following Tobias Strobl’s sumptuous ball into the box. The opener sparked some life into the game and Jonas Hofmann went close soon after, but Fraisl was able to push his effort around the post. Bundesliga 2 side Sandhausen ultimate ended the half in the ascendancy, forcing Yann Sommer into action with a couple of tricky-to-hold shots in the wet conditions.
The hosts continued to look the more dangerous side after the change of ends. Dennis Diekmeier’s low strike across the face of goal just slipped wide of the upright and Sommer had to be at his usual best to keep out Förster, despite having his view impaired. Things started to get more and more heated as time began to run out on Sandhausen’s comeback, with the rain adding to number of uncontrolled challenges flying in. Just before temperatures could boil over though, the referee blew his final whistle to signal an important opening victory for the Foals, securing their place in the DFB-Pokal second round.
In his first competitive game in charge, Marco Rose opted to play the same line-up that started against Chelsea in last week’s dress rehearsal. Stefan Lainer, Matthias Ginter, Nico Elvedi and Oscar Wendt made up the four-man defence in front of captain Yann Sommer. Tobias Stobl, Denis Zakaria, Jonas Hofmann and Florian Neuhaus shaped up a midfield diamond, while Alassane Plea partnered Marcus Thuram up front.
Rose was without Christoph Kramer (ankle), Tony Jantschke (back), Torben Müsel (knee), Lars Stindl, Julio Villalba (both in recovery training) and Ibrahima Traoré (unfit).