The hosts defeated Kraichgauer, who had not won in five official matches, with a score of 2:1 (0:0) and thus celebrated their fourth consecutive victory over Hoffenheim. In front of 49,341 spectators at Borussia Park, Alassane Plea (58th minute/penalty violation) and Nathan Ngumu (80th) scored the goals for Gladbach. Wout Weghorst scored for the visitors (60th place).

Hoffenheim coach Pellegrino Matarazzo has given his squad a bit of a makeover after recent, sometimes uninspiring performances, and called up four new players. This time Andrej Kramaric also had to settle for a place on the bench. For blocked Grisha Premel Finn Ole Becker entered the starting line-up.

With the new tempo, the visitors had good attacking scenes from the start. Maximilian Bayer almost missed the first goal twice (3/19). Anton Stach failed shortly after and then again before the break with a long-range shot past Gladbach goalkeeper Moritz Nicolas, who had made a strong performance.

Gladbach with some changes

A week after their 4-2 defeat to Borussia Dortmund, Gladbach were forced to make some changes because defenders Julian Weigl and Maximilian Weber, as well as two strikers Thomas Zwankara and Jordan Siebatcheu, were unavailable.

Florian Neuhaus and Marvin Friedrich returned to the starting lineup after four games. In the center of the attack, coach Gerardo Seoane unexpectedly relied on the fast Nguma, whose pace initially created a danger only in attack. “This is a chance for the boys and they can take it and prove themselves again in the cup game,” said the Swiss coach, who faces his team Wolfsburg in the last 16 of the German Cup on Tuesday.

Overall, however, the hosts had a tough time against Hoffenheim’s compact defence. The Gladbachers had few scoring opportunities. The best continued to be Rocco Reitz, who fired over the goal from close range and from a tight angle shortly before the break, and Plea, whose shot narrowly missed the left post.

The penalty put the hosts ahead. The player who was fouled took advantage of Ozan Kabak’s foul on Play and converted the penalty to make it 1-0. In turn, Weghorst saved Hoffenheim’s away series by scoring his fourth goal of the season. But Ngumu brought victory to Gladbach after a pass from Luca Netz.
© dpa

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