Werder get it done on a Monday! Werder win 3-1 over Köln in a vital six-point game down at the foot of the table. Milos Veljkovic opened the scoring in a tough-fought first half from a Junuzovic corner (33’). After the break Yuya Osako levelled things up (53’), only for Milot Rashica to score a delightful goal to put Werder ahead again (58’). In the closing stages, Maxi Eggestein put the cherry on top getting Werder’s third goal of the evening (90’). Werder capped off matchday 26 with a great victory in front of a home crowd.
Line-up and formation: Head coach Florian Kohfeldt made four changes to the side that played against Gladbach last week, with captain Zlatko Junuzovic and Florian Kainz coming straight back into the starting XI, as Belfodil and Bauer made their way to the bench. Theo Gebre Selassie took back his place in the line-up after recovering from illness last week and at the last minute, Milot Rashica came in for Bagfrede on the right-wing. On the tactical-front no real changes were made; Werder lined up in a 4-1-4-1 system. For the opponents, Werder’s record goal scorer Claudio Pizarro took his place in the XI.
5th minute: First good bit of action for Werder. Milot Rashica beats two Köln defenders and shoots, but Timo Horn gathers in the Köln goal.
26th minute: Rashica this time comes in off the left-hand side and is brought down by Marco Höger but the referee does not believe it to be a penalty offence.
29th minute: Max Kruse with the first purposeful effort on FC Köln’s goal. He starts the move and gets his effort away but Horn is equal to it.
33rd minute: GOOOAAAALLLLL! Junuzovic with the corner to Veljkovic, who finds himself in acres of space at the back post. He slots it past the Köln keeper with a measured volley.
44th minute: Another chance for Rashica! Kruse fools the Köln defence with a side step, the ball falls to Rashica but he flashes his effort wide.
45th minute: Half time! Werder take a well-earned lead into the dressing room.
53rd minute: Goal for Köln. The guests get on the scoresheet. Claudio Pizarro starts the move and gets the assist with his pass to Yuya Osako, whose effort beats Pavlenka.
58th minute: GOOOOOAAAAAAAL! RASHICA! Bremer get moving fast on the counter, Rashica breaks free down the left-hand side and is picked out perfectly by Florian Kainz. The finish from Rashica is equally as good as he slots it under Horn.
66th minute: Rashica leaves the pitch to a standing ovation. Well played, Milot!
77th minute: Huge chance for Pizarro! The Peruvian is picked out at the back post in a lot of space but his header just goes the wrong side of the post.
85th minute: Köln are really pushing forward now but this is leaving a lot of space in behind for the Green-Whites. A really open end to the game.
90th minute: EGGESTEIN GETS THE THIRD!! Maxi converts a counter to secure the three points. Junuzovic with the assist and Eggestein makes sure of it, slotting it home under Horn. 3-1 Werder!
Conclusion: The first half was by no means the finest 45 minutes of football but Werder got their goal and stopped Köln from really creating any clear-cut chances, being tight at the back. In the second half, Köln came out the brighter of the two sides and scored early on. Werder, however, were not behind for long, with Milot Rashica firing home just five minutes later with a vital second goal. Eggestein put the cherry on top with his late goal and wrapped up the three points. Werder’s next game is on Saturday 17th March at 15:30 CET, as the Green-Whites will travel to Augsburg for matchday 27.