Germany: Bundesliga
3 - 3
(3 - 0)
M. Mehlem (8), M. Maglica (10), T. Skarke (33), M. Maglica (49)
X T. Čvančara (50), T. Siebatcheu (56), F. Neuhaus (73), T. Čvančara (77)
By Ultan Corcoran@UltanCorcoran

Game of two halves sees Darmstadt and Gladbach share spoils

Putting the seal on the Bundesliga’s Matchday 4 action was the clash of Darmstadt and Monchengladbach. Both have endured a torrid start to the season – ‘Die Lilien’ point-less in three games, while Gladbach took a sole point from the opening draw with Augsburg.

It was clear to both camps that this match could prove pivotal in avoiding any relegation fears come May. In the end it would be honours even as Gladbach roared back from three goals down to finish 3-3.
Darmstadt would’ve had fond memories against Gladbach having dumped them out of the Pokal last season. Inside the opening 10 minutes they found themselves 2-0 up. First to strike was Marvin Mehlem – the midfielder latched onto Holland’s long ball and slotted past Nicolas. Two minutes later, Maglica held off Weigl to head Tobias Kempe’s delivery to the net. Seoane’s ‘Die Fohlen’ stunned as ‘Die Lilien’ blossomed into life.

Plea came close to finding a response when he broke free before the half hour. The Frenchman’s effort failed to nestle in the net of Schuhen. Having been denied by the post earlier, Skarke added further to Gladbach’s woes when he made it 3-0. Klarer broke the ball for the Union Berlin loanee who smashed home from the box edge. Nicolas was often left keep Darmstadt at bay singlehandedly. The young keeper pulled off several fine saves to deny Nurnberger twice.

Seoane made a quadruple change after the break, and it started to pay dividends. Some VAR intervention spotted a handball by Maglica who received rather harsh marching orders. Čvančara stepped forth but Schuhen guessed correctly to deny the young Czech international. Reduced to 10-men, Darmstadt would be exploited eventually. Reitz powered into the box, beat Mehlem and Klarer, and found Jordan at the back post who tapped home.

With 20 minutes to play Torsten Lieberknecht made alterations to try shore up the result. However, Neuhaus would capitalise with his subsequent chance. Čvančara’s header fell into the German’s path who converted from 6 yards. Super-sub Čvančara would restore parity with the goal of the game on 77 minutes – a thunderous strike from 20 yards that ripped past Schuhen at full stretch. Seven minutes of additional time did nothing to separate the teams in what was a thrilling game of two halves.

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