Augsburg - FC Köln

Germany: Bundesliga
Augsburg R. Gumny (54), R. Vargas (62)
WWK Arena2-3
FC Köln O. Duda (8), F. Kainz (23), O. Duda (33)

Augsburg players livid at result, Reuter plans serious discussions with Herrlich

By Peter Vice

Reactions to FC Augsburg's fourth consecutive match without a win were not exactly muted. FCA trainer Heiko Herrlich said his team played "a disastrous first half" and called the team's disorganization "sunken". 

Club sporting director Stefan Reuter outright refused to back his current head coach in an interview after the match. 

Heiko Herrlich.
Heiko Herrlich.Photo: Bayer 04 Leverkusen

Augsburg's latest loss leaves the Fuggerstädter only four points clear of the relegation playoff place. While it may be considered extremely unlikely that the Western Bavarians will be threatened with relegation this season, the club's keeper and its manager appeared prepared to treat the disastrous first half as a wake-up call.

Keeper Rafal Gikiewicz didn't mince words after the result. Neither did lead striker Andre Hahn. For that matter, Neither did general manager Stefan Reuter.

"We left our balls in the dressing room," Gikiewicz said of the opening 45 minutes when speaking to German broadcaster DAZN, "It felt like a final training session. Nothing positive to take from that match."

The 33-year-old keeper indicated that he had more to say, but ultimately refrained from expressing his views by citing "punishment". Attacker Hahn went into more specifics, criticizing "huge gaps" between the rows of Herrlich's 4-2-3-1.

Rumors about Herrlich's possible dismissal have cropped up over the course of the season, but the FCA's chief exec Reuter has always been quick to shoot them down. Reaching after the result by German footballing magazine Kicker, the 54-year-old assumed a markedly different tone this time.

"I hold Heiko Herrlich in incredibly high regard, but allow me to take the weekend [with him] to discuss and analyze what has happened," Reuter said, "You're well advised to let something like this sink in, sleep on it for a night, and then sit down together and think about how we approach the last three games."

This statement being laced with loaded meaning, Reuter could only repeat himself when pressed. The manager promised to reveal the result of the internal discussions "in due course".

"It is clear that a reaction is urgently necessary," Reuter answered when asked to elaborate somewhat, "We've now only picked up one points against three teams behind us in the table. You have to let something like that sink in."

1Rafał Gikiewicz
32Raphael Framberger ↩42
36Reece Oxford
6Jeffrey Gouweleeuw (C)
20Daniel Caligiuri ↩87
33Tobias Strobl ↩42
25Carlos Gruezo
16Ruben Vargas
27Alfreð Finnbogason ↩46
28André Hahn
40Tomáš Koubek
7Florian Niederlechner
2Robert Gumny ↪42
3Mads Pedersen
5Marek Suchý
14Jan Morávek ↪42
18László Bénes
23Marco Richter ↪87
24Fredrik Jensen ↪46
FC Köln
1Timo Horn
2Benno Schmitz
33Sebastiaan Bornauw
5Rafael Czichos
23Jannes-Kilian Horn ↩65
28Ellyes Skhiri
31Marius Wolf
14Jonas Hector (C)
18Ondrej Duda
11Florian Kainz ↩69
9Sebastian Andersson ↩79
16Ron-Robert Zieler
43Emmanuel Dennis
3Noah Katterbach ↪65
22Jorge Meré
6Marco Höger
13Max Meyer
20Elvis Rexhbecaj ↪79
21Salih Özcan
24Dominick Drexler ↪69

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