1-0 loss to Augsburg - still no points
That is now the fifth game of 2016 where Hannover 96 have failed to pick up a point, as a goal from Augsburg’s Ja-Cheol Koo in the 14th minute was enough for them to leave with all three points.
No changes for 96
In contrast to the game against Borussia Dortmund, head coach Thomas Schaaf made no changes to his starting XI for this match. For Augsburg, coach Markus Weinzierl had to react to losing two players during the week. Markus Feulner, Alexander Esswein and Alfred Finnbogason all started in place of Raul Bobadilla, Jeong-Ho Hong and Piotr Trochowski.
Early lead for Augsburg
The first chance of the day fell to the Reds in the fifth minute with Ceyhun Gülselam’s free kick, but FCA were ice-cold in taking their first opportunity of the match just ten minutes later. Hannover were not quick enough after losing the ball and Ja-Cheol Koo left several defenders standing as he shot into the bottom right corner from 16 yards to put the visitors in front. After falling behind, the Reds could count themselves lucky that the Bavarians did not extend their lead. Ron-Robert Zieler twice made saves from Caiuby and Esswein before the half-hour mark. Just before the break, Kenan Karaman posed a threat to the Augsburg goal when his long-range effort tested Marwin Hitz.
"The most important thing is that the players finally have clear minds.”
New impetus from substitutions
Following a long injury layoff, Hiroshi Kiyotake once again gave the side some attacking focus in the second half. Hugo Almeida also took to the pitch for the second 45 minutes, both players replacing Andre Hoffmann and Edgar Prib respectively. Augsburg also brought on Dong Won Ji in place of Markus Feulner. Hannover striker Almeida quickly got into the game as his dangerous shot in the 50th minute went wide. The presence of Kiyotake also helped the Reds’ passing game, and the desire to play forward remained – at least until the 66th minute. Kiyotake opened up the game through the middle and lifted the ball into Almeida, whose header flew just over the bar.
Despite further signs of encouragement in attack, it was not enough in the end for a point against Augsburg. Alexander Milosevic found himself a chance to equalise shorting before the end as a corner landed perfectly on the central defender’s head, but FCA’s keeper Marwin Hitz was able to claw the ball away just in front of the line. So it remained 1-0 to the Bavarians and 96 remain pointless in 2016 as relegation moves ever closer. Next week Hannover travel to Stuttgart.
Hannover 96: Zieler - Sakai, Milosevic, Gülselam, Albornoz - Hoffmann (46’ Kiyotake), Sané, Prib (46’ Almeida) - Bech (82’ Saint-Maximin), Karaman, Sobiech
FC Augsburg: Hitz - Verhaegh, Klavan, Gouweleeuw, Max - Kohr, Feulner (46’ Ji), Esswein (71’ Werner), Koo, Caiuby - Finnbogason (82’ Janker)
Goals: Koo (14’)
Yellow cards: Gülselam, Sané / Kohr, Werner
Referee: Daniel Siebert (Berlin)
Photos: deisterpics / firo sportphoto