Gladbach see off Hamburg to remain unbeaten.

Max Kruse's goal was enough to see off Hamburg.

Max Kruse’s goal was enough to see off Hamburg.

Both sets of fans weren’t treated to any goals on the weekend, both teams drawing 0-0, Gladbach’s derby game with Köln on Sunday failed to see the net bulge and surprising HSV managed to hold champions Bayern Munich to a goalless draw. Going into the game tonight Gladbach are yet to lose, while Hamburg are yet to win. Gladbach managed to earn six points off HSV last season and they will be hoping to do the same this season, in this fixture last season Gladbach won 3-1 after going a goal behind.

The first half was an even affair and ultimately it came down to Gladbach’s quality to give them the half time lead. Hamburg started the brighter of the two sides, but they weren’t able to create any clear chances. Just past the ten minute mark, a cross in from the right was whipped in, however it was too much in front of the sliding Pierre-Michel Lasogga.

The referee had a big decision to make when Raffael played the ball out wide to Max Kruse, his cross deflected off Dennis Diekmeier and the referee turned down the penalty appeals. After a second look, Gladbach can count themselves unlucky as the cross did indeed strike Diekmeier’s hand.

Granit Xhaka put his side in trouble when a poor pass backwards almost played in Lasogga, luckily for the Swiss midfielder Tony Jantschke was able to mop up and stop Lasogga going through on goal.

After twenty minutes neither keeper was called into action, that almost changed when André Hahn brilliantly turned away from Heiko Westermann, after his burst forward he picked out Kruse, who was forced to play it backwards, Jaroslav Drobný was still untested as Thorgan Hazard’s effort was blocked.

Five minutes after that attack Gladbach took the lead, a wonderful attack saw Raffael play it out wide to Hahn, he produced an outstanding cross between the Hamburg defence and Drobný, Kruse’s stretched effort hit the post and he was able to tap in the rebound before Drobný could react.

The goal was exactly what the home side needed and they came close when Hazard came in off the left to play the ball through to Raffael, only for Raffael’s effort to be saved by Drobný.

Hamburg were struggling to create chances and it wasn’t too long before they started trying their luck from range, Joha Djourou laid the ball off to Valon Behrami on the edge of the area, but he could only fire well over.

Gladbach finished the half very strongly and were playing some delightful football, one attack saw Kruse playing a lovely one-two with Xhaka and Kruse’s cross was directed wide by the head of Hahn. Kruse turned provided once again soon after this time from a corner, however once again his ball in was headed wide, Jantschke’s header wasn’t too far away.

One of the last bits of action in the half saw Lewis Holtby play a quick freekick into Zoltán Stieber, this caught Gladbach out, however Jantschke managed to make a great tackle which started a Gladbach counter, Raffael charged forward was cut short and the freekick didn’t come to anything.

Half Time: Borussia Mönchengladbach 1-0 Hamburg SV.

The second half started the same as the first ended, the first clear chance of the half saw Kruse through on goal thanks to a lovely ball over the top, however he had forty-yards to travel before shooting and by that time he was caught by Djourou and his shot was comfortably saved by Drobný. Soon after Kruse once again received the ball from an over the top pass, after Xhaka’s pass Kruse played the ball across to Raffael, who’s effort from the edge of the area was straight at Drobný.

Hamburg came close to an equaliser when Holtby’s freekick was headed into the back of Álvaro Domínguez by Xhaka and Djourou directed his header wide.

Gladbach kept knocking at the door for another goal and they came very close when a great counter attack saw Kruse deliver another good cross from the left, Raffael’s header at the back post struck Tolgay Arslan and his second effort from close range was then saved by Drobný and deflected away from Domínguez by Djourou.

After coming off the bench Branimir Hrgota burst forward and luckily regained possession after being tackled on the edge of the area, he laid the ball off to Kruse and his low effort was deflected just past the post.

Hamburg once again failed to test Yann Sommer in the Gladbach goal, Westermann’s effort from range flew just over. Up the other end Fabian Johnson had space after Hamburg gave away possession and his low effort was saved by the right foot of Drobný. The last chance of the game saw Artoms Rudņevs through on goal, however Xhaka brilliantly managed to get back to make a great block. Hamburg’s bad start to the season continues and they are still yet to win or even score.

Full Time: Borussia Mönchengladbach 1-0 Hamburg SV.


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