Germany: Bundesliga
3 - 2
(0 - 1)
FC Köln
F. Kainz (53), S. Tigges (56), D. Ljubicic (71), B. Schmitz (78)
J. Brandt (31)
By Peter Weis@PeterVicey

15.30 Kickoffs: Köln upset Dortmund, Union fall to Frankfurt

The 2022/23 German Bundesliga's eight matchday will conclude with SC Freiburg and 1. FC Union Berlin sharing top-spot after a wild round of 15:30 kickoffs. 

Borussia Dortmund missed out on a chance to rise to the top of the table with an upset loss away at Köln.

League leaders Union, meanwhile, also dropped points with a 0-2 loss away at Frankfurt; their first loss of the season.
Presumed title challengers Borussia Dortmund have suffered their third defeat of the season. Edin Terzic's BVB seemed to have matters under control in their visit to Köln's RheinEnergieStadion, but conceded three second-half goals and ultimately fell to the much more efficient Domstädter. Dortmund remain in the top four for now, yet can be booted out by Hoffenheim tomorrow.

Köln gaffer Steffen Buamgart made two changes to the XI that drew 1-1 with Bochum on the preceding Bundesliga matchday. Defender Luca Kilian returned from suspension to replace Nikola Soldo in central defense. Baumgart also showed favor to the substitute who scored late off the bench last time. Linton Maina started over Jan Thielmann to work alongside striker Steffen Tigges.

BVB trainer Terzic - having to do without Mats Hummels on short notice - turned to Niklas Süle to start alongside Nico Schlotterbeck. Other changes to the XI that bested Schalke 1-0 in the Revierderby on matchday seven saw Raphaël Guerreiro return to take over for Marius Wolf at left-back and Karim Adeyemi take the place of the injured Marco Reus.

Bolstered by a sold-out crowd at the RheinEnergie, Köln emerged as the more active side in the opening ten minutes. Die Geißböcke were able to penetrate the penalty area early, with Dejan Ljubicic fired off to effort s that were blocked in the 3rd. Ljubicic came close to setting up Tigges five minutes later. The guests didn't wake up offensively until Jude Bellingham got an effort on target in the 10th.

Slowly but surely, Terzic's side began to make more offensive pinpricks. Julian Brandt, operating out of Reus' ten slot, was able to dish off to Donyell Malen and Adeyemi out on the wings. The BVB attackers could only manage blocked shots. After a somewhat choppy phase during which match official Harm Osmers issued four yellow cards, Florian Kainz got a few things going for the hosts offensively near the half-hour mark.

The opening goal would nevertheless belong to Dortmund. Thomas Meunier stripped Kainz of the ball in the 31st. The ever dangerous Bellingham marked up towards the edge of the area before laying off for Brandt, who finished with aplomb. Adeyemi nearly double the advantage twice in the minutes following the goal. The German national team attacker twice found himself denied by Köln keeper Marvin Schwäbe.

Schwäbe would also turn away a solid Malen shot before the first half concluded. Dortmund entered the tunnel up 1-0, surely feeling as fig they should have presided over a larger lead. Die Schwarzegelben were ultimately punished for not cushioning the lead when a very spry Köln side immediately started generating quality chances after the restart. Eight minutes into the second 45, the hosts were able to grab a deserved equalizer.

Maina did an excellent job setting up a trailing Kainz after Köln captain Jonas Hector played him through. Mainz's emphatic finish leveled the score. Less than three minutes later, Kainz swung in a corner that Tigges polished off with his head for the 2-1. Dortmund struggled to come up with a response. Schwäbe made several more saves, but the BVB efforts didn't pose too much of a challenge for him. Köln substitute Florian Dietz came within a whisker of the 3-1 in the 69th.

Ljubicic finally gave the hosts their two goal advantage two minutes after Dietz missed the sitter. Another Köln sub, Denis Huseinbasic, played across to the Austrian in the penalty area in the 71st. Dortmund were given a lifeline in the 78th when an effort from sub Tom Rothe deflected off both Benno Schmitz and Schwäbe into the back of the net. A draw was suddenly in reach with 12 minutes to go.

In all candor, however, all the remaining chances belonged to Köln. Effzeh subs Sargis Adamyan and Eric Martel tested BVB keeper Alexander Meyer down the stretch while Terzic's charges could manage nothing more of note. Buamgart's men defended passionately and resolutely until the very end.

Elsewhere in the Bundesliga's 15:30 kickoffs, Eintracht Frankfurt were able to hold off league-leaders 1. FC Union Berlin 2-0 at Deutsche Bank Park. Oliver Glasner's SGE rushed out to a 2-0 halftime lead behind brilliant goals from Mario Götze and Jesper Lindstrøm.

The table-toppers tried to work their way back into the game and were even gifted a spectacular chance to do so when Frankfurt's best player up to that point - Randal Kolo Muani - was sent off on double yellows in the 68th. Urs Fischer's men ultimately couldn't make anything out of the man advantage.

Whereas Union weren't able to fight back from a 0-2 halftime deficit, Bo Svensson's FSV Mainz 05 did claw a goal back at the Europa Park Stadion after SC Freiburg rushed out their own 2-0 halftime lead. Christian Streich's Breisgauer were still able to hold on for a 2-1 victory and, as a result, now share top spot with Union on 17 points.

Over at the Volkswagen Arena in Lower Saxony, Wolfsburg were able to secure their second win of the season with a 3-2 win over still winless Stuttgart. The match featured four first-half goals that left the sides even at 2-2. A dramatic late goal from Yannick Gerhardt enabled Niko Kovac's Wölfe to snatch the three points in second-half injury time.

At the Red Bull Arena in Leipzig, new VfL Bochum trainer Thomas Letsch's tenure got off to a terrible start. The German Red Bulls steamrolled their guests with a 4-0 win. Timo Werner and Christopher Nkunku bagged braces in the victory. Nkunku came close to a hat trick, unfortunately missing from the penalty spot.

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