I didn’t see it. Did you?
Despite the existence of enough technology to allow a German football club with a relatively meager international profiel to become the all-consuming sports passion for someone nine time zones away, we’re still not to a point where one can reliably be able to see every match from the west coast of the United States, much less test matches.
Therefore, I followed along via social media and other online outlets. In case you were not able to do that either, let me share with you how the 2:3 victory over VfL Osnabrück played out today (pretend you didn’t read the headline and then read reallyl slowly if you wish to simulate live-ticker action) . . .
If you are on Twitter and are otherwise unable to watch EffZeh matches, you should probably be following 1. FC Köln Live. Most applications that allow you to read your Twitter timeline will translate tweets for you, so you can easily keep up with matches as they occur.
Of course, this is true of the #effzeh hashtag, too. Still, the live account is fairly strictly used only for match events, which is easier to sort through than the hashtag timeline during a match.
Even without a translator, you can figure pretty easily that the names listed were the line-up to start the match at VfL Osnabrück today.
Bård Finne and Anthony Modeste is at least interesting as a striker pair. With so many options, Peter Stöger might be testing for chemistry at this point.
The back line of Hector, Lehmann, Olkowski, and Brecko is clearly a patchwork crew, as necessitated by lack of depth at central defense paired with injuries to Mergim Mavraj and Dominic Maroh.
Similarly, the midfield is a bit indicative of Stöger needing to be flexible in using the resources he has available. With Lehmann on the back row to help fill gaps in defense, the coach opted to use Yuya Osako behind the strike team. Osako got some run in the midfield last season, with mixed results.
But, speaking of resources . . .
Our friends at the Geissblog noted that new arrival Frederik Sørensen was seen wearing the Rut un Wiess, but that he would NOT be joining his new teammates on the field for the friendly match.
Official “fan representative” Rainer Mendel shared this image from the early stages of the match, showing fairly ideal conditions for taking in a match, whether the locals decided to join or not.
One of the local fans who did attend, though, did share this video of a 4th minute penalty miss by the hosts.
Dodgy start by our boys.
The Kölner Stadt-Anzeiger’s live coverage, here provided by (I think) Philipp Sagioglu, that a huge chance for Finne passed without incident just before Osnabrück had the ball in the net, but was adjudged to be offside.
Two more chances for the EffZeh, but Osako and Finne each fail to seize their opportunity.
Finally, Osnabück breaks through in the 37th minute.
Halil Savran was the scorer. Savran recently moved to Osnabrück from Hansa Rostock, but his name might sound more familiar from his days with FC Erzgebirge Aue, as he scored one of two goals for Aue in the first EffZeh loss of the Holger Stanislawski era.
And what’s an unexpected deficit without a shout for the removal of Stöger? (note: he’s kidding!)
Halftime! The EffZeh trails 0:1, likely fortunate to not have surrendered more, but maybe also kicking themselves for not getting on the scoreboard.
Back-to-back updates from the KSTA team tell us that Osako, Finne, Modeste, and Gerhardt stay in the clubhouse after the halftime break. In their places, come Slawomir Peszko, Phlipp Hosiner, Simon Zoller, and Kevin Vogt.
Just six minutes into the second half, things go level, thanks to Phlipp Hosiner connecting with a Jonas Hector corner.
A minute after putting Köln on the board, he delivers the lead.
Rest assured, expectations for him will spike at an alarming and unreasonable rate, at least for a little while.
“Save some for the season!”
Hat trick for Hosiner?
Yep! The new guy snags his third in the 70th minute.
So, yes, that’s goals for Hosiner in minutes 51, 52, and 70. “Works for the EffZeh. It can continue.”
Osnabrück closes to within a goal in the 83rd minute, but we’re already beyond thinking about the defensive problems that might be indicated by this, in favor of focusing on the new goal-scoring hero.
Though, coach probably won’t be too pleased by this development.
And, yes, it’s probably prudent to remember that this IS just a test match, but let a take-away be that Hosiner clearly “knows where the goal is.”
Because it’s the club’s English account, you can read the text for yourself, but in case you don’t recognize him, that’s Hosiner getting props from Zoller in the picture.
At least one fan has seen enough to make some prognostications. Paul Lehner figures the new players have shown him enough to help lift the EffZeh into a single-digit spot for the end of the 2015-16 season.
And, as probably could have been predicted, coach Stöger looks not at the result, rather at issues with sloppy play, noting the first half was “completely poor,” as reported by the good folks at the Geissblog.