What a game. FC Augsburg came away with a hard fought point against the visiting SC Freiburg after their encounter ended in a 3-3 draw. Augsburg took the early lead in the first minute through Alfred Finnbogason, although goals from Christian Günter (20’) and Nils Petersen (48’, 65’) turned the game in favour of the men from Breisgau. Thanks to a crazy last few minutes, however, two more goals from Finnbogason brought FCA back from out of nowhere to end 2017 on a high (90’, 90+3’).
In FCA’s last league game of the year, Manuel Baum made two changes to the side that lost 3-2 away to Schalke in midweek. Rani Khedira and Marcel Heller replaced the injured Kevin Danso and Ja-Cheol Koo, who was suffering from illness.
The game got off to a wild start, as Alfred Finnbogason finished coolly past Alexander Schwolow after a nice bit of build-up play from Caiuby with only 56 seconds having been played. In the seventh minute, Michael Gregoritsch headed just wide from a Philipp Max corner. Shortly after, the Austrian fired over a golden chance to double FCA’s lead, although to his defense he was caught slightly off guard when Finnbogason let another Max cross run on to him. The home side dominated the opening stages, putting the visitors under pressure and forcing them into untimely errors.
In the 20th minute though, Christian Günter capitalised on a nice one-two pass with teammate Marco Terrazzino to bring things back level. Freiburg grew into the game from this point on and managed to swing the momentum slightly. With 30 minutes played, Yoric Ravet pushed forward into the penalty area from the right hand side, but his sharply taken shot didn’t catch Marwin Hitz off guard. The two sides would enter the half time break tied at one.
Finnbogason brings FCA back
In the second half, Nils Petersen took over the game. The Freiburg striker crept in at the back post from a corner to smash them in front from barely a meter out (48’). At the other end, Marcel Heller tried his luck from six metres out, but he didn’t quite connect with it and his shot travelled just wide. FCA kept pushing for an equaliser, and Finnbogason was the next to come close with a header. Shortly afterwards, Caglar Söyüncü hauled down Heller in the area and left referee Christian Dingert with no choice but to give a penalty (59’). He overturned his decision though, after coming back to the Video Assistant and giving a foul against Finnbogason for a handball in the buildup.
As Augsburg were pushing so hard for an equaliser, lots of space was left for the men from Breisgau to counter. One such chance was utilised by the in-form Pedersen, who rounded Marwin Hitz to extend his side’s lead to 3-1. Manuel Baum reacted by bringing on Sergio Córdova (71’) and Jonathan Schmid (76’) for Heller and Khedira to get some fresh legs in the game. The closing stages were extremely entertaining, thanks to a Finnbogason header that brought FCA one goal closer (90’). Augsburg would then throw everything forward as the game wound down, and were rewarded with another Finnbogason goal at the death to earn the home side a point. Wild celebrations ensued, and with it, 2017 ends on a high.