Under the floodlights on Friday evening Florian Niederlechner produced a dazzling assisting display, Philipp Max scored twice, Fredrik Jensen scored his first goal of the season and Iago scored his first Bundesliga goal of the season.
FCA head coach Martin Schmidt made one change to the side that won 2-1 at home against Mainz last week: following an accumulation of too many yellow cards, Ruben Vargas was unavailable for selection, so Iago managed to make his second start. Fredrik Jensen also made his second start in the side.
The opening minutes of the game were dictated by the hosts. They had the first chance, a shot into the side netting followed by an offside chance (2′). Only one minute later something similar happened at the other end of the pitch, as Florian Niederlechner flashed an effort from the right into the side netting. Two free kicks from Philipp Max and Marco Richter also failed to produce a scoring opportunity (6′, 7′). FCA finally took the lead in the 11th minute, as Niederlechner pushed past a defender following a throw in and squared the ball across the box for Max to tap into an empty net. However, the lead only lasted three minutes – Sebastian Rudy picked up the ball in the FCA penalty area, whop in turn found teammate Robert Skov, who blasted in an effort into the far corner (14′).
FCA defence keeps the score at 1-1 going into the break
After equalising, TSG were the more attacking team for the rest of the half, and had numerous corners but the FCA defence was able to clear each time so that each chance for the hosts petered out. There was another chance for FCA after Marco Richter found Rani Khedira, but his cross failed to find an Augsburg shirt (25′). Shortly before the break TSG had a few more chances, the biggest of which fell to Ihlas Bebou who evaded the defence and was through on goal but Tomas Koubek was on hand to stop the attack (43′). FCA’s strong defensive display ensured that the visitors were able to get to the half-time break at one goal apiece.
Clinical offence in the second half
FCA came into the second half unchanged. The first chance went to Hoffenheim, but Jeff Gouweleeuw was on hand to clear (49′). Kevin Akpoguma did not have as much success with his clearance in the home penalty area, instead fouling Florian Niederlechner in the area and giving away a penalty kick (50′). Philipp Max took the free kick and sent the keeper the wrong way. Only six minutes later FCA’s top scorer was once again involved in a goal as he released Fredrik Jensen on the left, who powered an effort under the onrushing home goalkeeper to score his first goal of the season. In the following minutes, the hosts again tried to regroup and score, but Ihlas Bebou shot wide of the FCA goal (59′) and Sargis Adamyan headed over from a corner (64′), and these chances increased for the hosts, but they were unable to convert them due to an overall lack of accuracy and the ability of the FCA goalkeeper. In the 78th minute there was a goalmouth scramble and Koubek prevented a certain goal with a smart save. Only two minutes later however, the Czech was finally beaten as Locadia glanced a ball from Robert Skov past the keeper into the corner (80′).
FCA keep going and secure the win
Even though the second goal seemed to inspire Hoffenheim, FCA were not prepared to roll over, especially not Max and Niederlechner. The former supplied the latter with a ball to the left flank, and the striker managed to produce the perfect cross to find Iago in the penalty area to score his first Bundesliga goal and FCA’s fourth (85′). The hosts remained motivated, but were unable to find a way past Koubek, who turned an effort around the post in added time.
So Augsburg march on, picking up their second away win from five games without tasting defeat once. The Red-Green-Whites now sit in 10th place in the table, with 20 points. At the start of the last double gameweek before Christmas, Tuesday 17th December, FCA host Fortuna Düsseldorf at the WWK ARENA.