Borussia Mönchengladbach made it seven straight matchdays at the top of the Bundesliga table with a 4-2 home win over SC Freiburg on Sunday. Breel Embolo’s brace, plus goals from Marcus Thuram and Patrick Herrmann, secured all three points for Marco Rose’s side.
The almost 51,000 fans inside BORUSSIA-PARK were treated to a thrilling opening few minutes. Gladbach went ahead from their first chance when Flekken spilled Ramy Bensebaini’s header from a free-kick and Marcus Thuram smashed home the rebound. The lead only lasted until the sixth minute, however. Jonathan Schmid’s free-kick went over the wall and into the back of the net to quickly level the scores. The chances kept on coming too, albeit in one direction. Thuram was causing Freiburg all kinds of problems, and a rebound from one of his efforts was tucked in by Breel Embolo, only for the flag to go up for offside. Thuram then hit the post himself, before Herrmann rounded off the half with a couple more good opportunities that went to waste.
Borussia fans will have been frustrated to still be drawing at half time, but they didn’t even have to wait 60 seconds after the break for the hosts to finally get back in front. Herrmann played the perfect ball across the box to the waiting Embolo, and the Swiss kept his composure to fire past Flekken. It was merely the beginning of a hectic 15 minutes. Embolo won a penalty in the 48th minute, but hit the post from his spot-kick to keep the score at 2-1. Fast forward just three more minutes and Borussia did have their third goal, however. Denis Zakaria played a magnificent defence-splitting pass to Embolo, who spotted the better-placed Herrmann and Flaco finished into the empty net. The rollercoaster ride continued in the 58th minute when Freiburg reduced the lead to just one goal, with Günter heading in from a free-kick. After Bensebaini blocked a shot on the line a short while later, the Foals managed to settle down again and get things going in the other direction. Flekken saved well from Thuram in the 70th minute, but he was unable to stop main protagonist Embolo from grabbing his second two minutes later. He won the ball himself from Koch, before receiving it back from Neuhaus and dinking his finish over the goalkeeper. Borussia had a number of chances to add to their tally on the counter in the closing stages, but a sense of urgency was missing with the home side already 4-2 up and they were able to comfortably see out the result to reclaim the top spot they had lost on Saturday.
Marco Rose made five changes to the side that won in Europa League against Wolfsberg on Thursday. Nico Elvedi, Tony Jantschke, Florian Neuhaus, Breel Embolo and Patrick Herrmann all come in, with Tobias Strobl, Oscar Wendt, Jonas Hofmann, Alassane Plea and Lars Stindl dropping to the bench. The full starting XI was as follows: Sommer; Lainer, Jantschke, Elvedi, Bensebaini; Zakaria, Bénes, Neuhaus; Herrmann, Embolo, Thuram.
The boss was only without three players due to injury: Matthias Ginter (muscle problem), Andreas Poulsen (ankle) and Torben Müsel (knee).