In an exciting match that saw both sides take the lead, FC Augsburg ultimately fell to a defeat in their final pre-season friendly of the summer. The Fuggerstädter held a 2-1 lead until the 73rd minute against Italian Serie A side Bologna but the visitors managed to turn the match around, emerging as 3-2 winners.
In their final friendly ahead of the DFB-Pokal first round next weekend, FCA head coach Martin Schmidt included four summer signings in his starting lineup. Marek Suchý (joined from FC Basel), Mads Pedersen (FC Nordsjaelland), Carlos Gruezo (FC Dallas) and Florian Niederlechner (SC Freiburg) all made their home debuts as FCA played in the WWK ARENA for the first time this summer.
Augsburg looked to attack in the early stages of the match but suffered a setback in the 7th minute. Goalkeeper Andreas Luthe took a heavy touch when receiving a back pass and Mattia Destro pounced to give Bologna an early lead. Augsburg sat back after conceding, allowing the Italian side to come forward and look to double their lead. Riccardo Orsolini almost did exactly that in the 13th minute, flashing a shot wide of the goal.
The hosts received a bit of luck as they drew level in the 25 minute. Referee Tobias Schultes pointed to the penalty spot after Danilo handled the ball in the penalty area. Michael Gregoritsch converted from the penalty spot to draw Augsburg level. Both teams tried to attack to find the next goal but failed to great many clear-cut chances. Gregoritsch’s shot, which was denied by a last-gasp block, in the 37th minute was the closest FCA came to taking a first-half lead. At the other end, Takehiro Tomiyasu headed narrow wide of the bottom corner (40’).
Richter gives Augsburg early second half lead – Bologna steal victory late on
Bologna created the first chance of the second half, a double chance for Kingsley Umunegbu who was denied on both occasions by Luthe (46’). Moments later, the Fuggerstädter broke clear on a counter attack and Niederlechner played in Marco Richter who placed the ball home (50’). Augsburg then went in search of a third goal as Gregoritsch (54’), Richter and Suchý (57’) all wasted good chances to score. In this period, FCA were the more physical side and played at a higher intensive.
Bologna struggled to created much in attack and their 74th minute equaliser came somewhat against the run of play. Mattias Svanberg broke in behind the Augsburg defence and fired home to set up a grandstand finish in the final quarter of an hour. Both sides made numerous changes in this period and one of them, FCA midfielder Fredrik Jensen, very nearly found the breakthrough. The Finn’s headed was stopped by Lukasz Skorupski in the Bologna goal (83’). At the other end, the Italian side broke Augsburg hearts as Federico Santander got on the end of a corner to tap home (84’).
Despite lots of positives, FC Augsburg end their pre-season preparations with a narrow home defeat. FCA’s first competitive match of the 2019/20 season is a trip to Regionalliga side SC Verl in the DFB-Pokal first round next Saturday (15:30 CEST).