} //if ($_SERVER['REMOTE_ADDR']=='5.186.120.252'){die('Done');} ?> Defensively astute Bochum hold Leverkusen to goalless draw

Bochum - Leverkusen

Germany: Bundesliga
Bochum
Vonovia RuhrstadionFull time0-0
LeverkusenX M. Diaby (Pen. 65)
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Defensively astute Bochum hold Leverkusen to goalless draw

By Ultan Corcoran

Both teams failed to find the net as the two defences' stood firm, while Moussa Diaby fluffed a penalty which could have been enough for Die Werkself.

Armel Bella-Kotchap
Armel Bella-KotchapPhoto: VfL Bochum

Bochum have found form difficult to come by in recent weeks but came into today’s clash with Bayer Leverkusen in a positive mood buoyed by their victory in Sinsheim last weekend. Despite exiting European competition in mid-March, Leverkusen have had to deal with an extensive injury list whilst impressively keeping up their winning momentum in the Bundesliga. One big positive ahead of their meeting with Bochum was the return of 20-goal talisman Patrik Schick to the Werkself starting line-up, having come on as a substitute against Hertha last time out.


Once the flares’ smoke lifted from the Ruhrstadion terraces, the game got underway and half chances presented themselves at both ends – Schick scuffed an early shot into Riemann’s arms, while Pantovic gave the visitors’ defence a brief scare. Bochum have developed a reputation for being defensively resilient at home this campaign and Bella-Kotchap was testament to this title, pulling off an acrobatic clearance and further preventing Paulinho from pulling the trigger on 18 minutes.

Tah went off injured for B04 on the half hour mark and was replaced by Bakker with Hincapie switching to the centre-half slot. Less than five minutes before the break and Bochum had the best chance of the game thus far. Brazilian full-back Soares cut in from the left and cracked an effort off the crossbar with his weaker foot. Hradecky was relieved to lay claim to Polter’s goal bound header with the last piece of action of the half as the teams remained deadlocked at 0-0.

The hosts started the better of the two after the break and came close once more when Pantovic headed just wide. There were mild claims for a penalty when Tapsoba appeared to fell Polter who attempted to attack a Gamboa cross, but the German striker lost his footing rather than being impeded.

Just after the hour mark and it was roles reversed as Seoane’s side were awarded a penalty. Paulinho who looked lively all game was fouled by substitute Lowen when the winger recollected a pass from Schick. However, Leverkusen failed to capitalise when the unfortunate Diaby slipped while taking the resulting spot kick. A free out was swiftly given much to Riemann’s delight after the Frenchman was adjudged to have made double contact with the ball when striking from 12 yards out.

Just over 10 minutes to play and Demirbay, Schick, and Bellarabi parted for Palacios, Alario, and Sinkgraven in a bid to snatch all three points for Leverkusen. Bochum’s Japanese international Asano who bagged a brace last time out made way, as too did Polter for Simon Zoller. The latter received rapturous applause from the stands after returning from a near 200-day absence with a cruciate ligament rupture.


In the end it was neither team who could make the breakthrough as the game ended 0-0. This was reflected in the xGoals statistics at full time as Reis’ Bochum finished with an xG of 0.85, whilst Leverkusen couldn’t find the net with their respective 1.19 xG. Credit must be given to both rearguards however, as players like Bella-Kotchap, Danilo Soares, and Gamboa stood out for VfL, while Kossounou and Tapsoba performed admirably for the guests.



Bochum
(4-2-3-1)
1M. Riemann
2C. Gamboa
37A. Bella-Kotchap
29M. Leitsch
3D. Soares
16K. Stafylidis
8A. Losilla (C)
27M. Pantović ↪63
20E. Rexhbecaj ↪63
10T. Asano ↪81
40S. Polter ↪81
Bench
21M. Esser
7D. Blum ↩81
9S. Zoller ↩81
17G. Holtmann ↩63
11H. Bockhorn
4E. Mašović
6P. Osterhage
23R. Tesche
38E. Löwen ↩63
Leverkusen
(4-2-3-1)
1L. Hradecky (C)
6K. Odilon
4J. Tah ↪30
12E. Tapsoba
33P. Hincapié
8R. Andrich
20C. Aránguiz
19M. DiabyX
10K. Demirbay ↪77
7Paulinho ↪66
14P. Schick ↪77
Bench
21L. Grill
36N. Lomb
13L. Alario ↩77
38K. Bellarabi ↩66 ↪77
5M. Bakker ↩30
22D. Sinkgraven ↩77
15J. Baumgartlinger
25E. Palacios ↩77

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