By Ultan Corcoran@UltanCorcoran

Five-star Wolfsburg down Hertha while Kramarić's late strike denies Stuttgart

There was little for Sandro Schwarz to cheer about in the German capital as his BSC side succumbed to a harrowing 5-0 defeat. Meanwhile, Stuttgart were pegged back by an injury-time strike from Andrej Kramarić as the Swabians and Hoffenheim shared a point in the derby.
Hoffenheim 2 - Stuttgart 2

Andre Breitenreiter’s Hoffenheim made a dream start in the 11th minute facing Stuttgart tonight. Angeliño, on loan from RB Leipzig, crossed in the direction Florian Müller’s goalmouth. TSG talisman Andrej Kramarić was in the position you would expect any great striker to be, as the Croat cushioned his strike home with his right foot. While Hoffenheim dominated proceedings aftewrwards, Stuttgart slowly grew into the affair. With five minutes of added time in Sinsheim, Stuttgart dragged themselves level. Ahamada slipped in Serhou Guirassy. The towering Frenchman raced in on goal and thrashed the ball beyond Baumann to level matters 1-1 the break. An impressive sixth goal in 10 competitive games for the Swabian’s red-hot frontman who arrived this summer from Rennes.

Breintenreiter replaced Vogt with Dabbur during the break. This resulted in a Hoffenheim formation change which took the shape of a flat back four. Stuttgart eventually completed the comeback on 77 minutes when Wataru Endo delivered a goal of supreme quality. Naouirou Ahamada, who had a hand in the first goal, cut the ball back for the Japanese international who curled past the best attempts of Baumann at full stretch. However, a somewhat unfortunate moment followed as Ahamada received his second yellow card of the night for celebrating with the ecstatic Stuttgart supporters. Stuttgart reduced to 10 men for the final 12 minutes.

Hoffenheim’s man advantage eventually told in added time. Despite Florian Müller keeping the hosts out late on, the Stuttgart defence eventually gave way. The individual brilliance of Andrej Kramarić shone trough again in the 94th minute to make it 2-2. Another Angeliño delivery sailed to the back post. The Croatian picked up possession, cut back on the angle, and bent the ball under the crossbar. Stuttgart minutes away from a hard-fought Baden-Württemburg derby win but left to settle for a point in the end.

Hertha Berlin 0 – Wolfsburg 5

‘Die Wölfe’ took an early 4th minute lead in the Olympiastadion through the boot of Mattias Svanberg. Patrick Wimmer delivered a sumptuous cross into the Hertha box from a freekick on the right flank. The Swedish midfielder picked out the bottom left corner with a somewhat acrobatic finish, which commenced a period of dominance for Wolfsburg. Niko Kovac’s men doubled their advantage just after the 30-minute mark. A somewhat fortunate penalty given away by ex-Wolfsburg man Dodi Lukebakio resulted in a penalty. Skipper Maxi Arnold stepped up and made no mistake from the spot.

Continuing from his brace against Freiburg last weekend, Jonas Wind made it 3-0 mere moments later. BSC’s Šunjić surrendered possession to Svanberg who picked out the in-form striker. A deft lobbed finish from Wind sailed over Danish compatriot Christensen. Sandro Schwarz left in disbelief on the touchline as the visitors took a three-goal lead into the dressing rooms.

In a bid to liven things up for the hosts, Sandro Schwarz made a triple change for the second-half restart. Mittelstädt, Šunjić, and Rogel made way for Plattenhardt, Ngankam, and Uremović. Rogel’s first-half booking was the fifth of his season meaning he will be suspended for the derby vs Union Berlin next weekend. While BSC improved gradually, they failed to cause Wolfsburg any real concerns at the back. With their first meaningful attack of the second-half Wolfsburg made it 4-0. Svanberg again instrumental in finding the unmarked Ridle Baku who fired back across goal in style. That wasn’t it for the team from Lower Saxony – Substitute Omar Marmoush made it five capping off a great night for the visitors. The Egyptian offered up his best Messi impression, collecting the ball on the left wing before beating Scherhant, Tousart, and Uremović to blast the ball into the roof of the net.

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