Germany: Bundesliga
2 - 3
(1 - 1)
M. Ducksch (30), N. Füllkrug (86)
M. Bakker (34), J. Frimpong (56), A. Hložek (83)
By Ultan Corcoran@UltanCorcoran

Leverkusen persevere to see off luckless Bremen

The Weserstadion was the venue for today’s clash between Werder Bremen and Bayer Leverkusen. After a tricky victory over Hungarian side Ferencváros on Thursday, Xabi Alonso was without the influential Florian Wirtz for the game. Bremen, meanwhile, were looking to bounce back after a narrow loss to Augsburg.

Separated by a single point in the table ahead of kick-off, Leverkusen’s Frimpong was the mastermind behind securing the three points. His goal and assist, alongside Hložek’s header paved the way for a 3-2 win.
Leverkusen looked remarkably shaky playing out from the back early on. Amine Adli went closest for the visitors on 15 minutes as he struck the side netting. Bremen would hit the front on the half hour mark – A long ball found Jens Stage who in turn found Füllkrug. The Bundesliga’s top goal scorer unselfishly passed to strike partner Ducksch who made no mistake with the finish.

The home side could only hold the lead for three minutes until Leverkusen to make it 1-1. A break down the right allowed Frimpong to cross for Diaby. While the Frenchman could only hit thin air, Bakker could gather and fire an unstoppable shot beyond Pavlenka. Level at the break, however Ole Werner’s Bremen looked the far more threatening of the two.

Jens Stage was afforded a guilt edged opportunity directly after the restart. The Dane ought to have picked out the unmarked Ducksch instead. Frimpong, who was a constant thorn in Bremen’s side all first-half would make it 2-1 for ‘Die Werkself’ on 56 minutes. The Dutch wing-back was a tad fortunate to see his strike deflect off Stark which completely deceived Jiří Pavlenka.

A stunning save by Hradecky at his near post kept the wily Füllkrug at bay in the 65th minute. Bremen slowly began to turn the screw as the game approached the final ten minutes. However, there was great difficulty made of carving out scoring chances. As if by chance, Leverkusen would go 3-1 up on 83 minutes. Amine Adli with the final ball to the Czech international who guided a glancing header home. Bremen managed to reduce the arrears when Eren Dinkçi’s attempted cross met the hand of Hincapie. Füllkrug dispatched the spot kick, but ‘Die Werderaner’ ultimately unlucky as they succumbed to a narrow 3-2 defeat.

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