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First pre-season defeat
Eintracht lose 1-2 in Karlsruhe
In their sixth test ahead of the competitive start into the 2. Bundesliga season, the Löwen suffered their first defeat. Lieberknecht’s eleven slipped to a 1-2 defeat away to Karlsruher SC, despite Hendrick Zuck (4‘) putting his side into an early lead. A lapse in concentration allowed KSC’s Dominik Stroh-Engel in to snatch an equaliser (47‘), with an own-goal by Joseph Baffo (53‘) leading to the ultimately negative result at the training camp in Herxheim.
Eintracht got off to a fantastic start, taking the lead after just four minutes. Hendrick Zuck let fly from distance and beat keeper Benjamin Uphoff to make it 1-0 for the Blau-Gelben. KSC also managed to create some promising openings early on, but when push came to shove, Löwen keeper Jasmin Fejzic was on hand to avert the danger. In the 33rd minute, Julius Biada did well to win possession and press forward, teeing up Domi Kumbela, who led the team out as captain, but the KSC keeper was alert to the danger and cleared his lines. Soon after, the Sport-Club had their chance to equalise, with Anton Fink firing narrowly wide of the mark (37’). In the 40th minute, Dominik Stroh-Engels tried his luck, but an ill-placed shot caused no problems for the Eintracht goal and the Blau-Gelben thus took their narrow advantage into the break.
To begin the second-half, coach Torsten Lieberknecht made four personnel changes, but the newly formed eleven seemed far from alert as Stroh-Engel stole in to level the scores at 1-1 in the 47th minute. And it wasn’t to stop there! On the attack, KSC’s Jonas Föhrenbach delivered a cross to the centre, which Joseph Baffo, with no pressure from an opponent, turned into his own net – 1-2 (53’). The Löwen shook themselves and quickly increased their activity, with Biada testing the Karlsruhe keeper from close range (56’). A crowd of 1,147 in Wildparkstadion saw Matthias Bader break through on the and bare down on goal, but Niko Kijewski fired up the engines and got in to deny the third-flight side another chance on goal (77‘).
In the closing phase, Eintracht raised the pressure, but were unable to make their superiority count. On a positive note, in the 70th minute, Suleiman Abdullahi was introduced, making his comeback having suffered a deep cut to his calf. The striker got his first sight of goal in the 84th minute, but had his effort blocked away. With five minutes to go, Jasi Fejzic had to prove his worth once again in denying Marvin Wanitzek with an out-stretched boot. The final chance of the game fell to Abdullahi, who had only Uphoff to beat, but the keeper managed to turn the ball away for a corner. In the end it was to finish in a narrow defeat for the Löwen on the penultimate day of their training camp in Herxheim.
Torsten Lieberknecht: „I don’t like to lose. During the pre-season preparations it’s all about proving your worth and recommending yourself. Some manage to do that better than others. That’s what the preparations are for and we knew today’s game would be a real test of our physical state. The lads were completely switched off coming out after the break and that resulted in us losing the match. It was clear to see that we have a lot of work to do in the two weeks before our season opener in Dusseldorf.“
The game at a glance
Fejzic - Decarli (46’ Baffo), Valsvik (46’ Nkansah), Moll (46’ Boland), Biada (46’ Tietz), Kumbela (C) (46’ Abdullahi), Becker (46’ Breitkreuz), Reichel (46’ Kijewski), Khelifi (46’ Sauer), Hernandez (46’ Samson), Zuck (46’ Hochscheidt)
0-1 Zuck (4‘)
1-1 Stroh-Engel (47‘)
2-1 Baffo (53‘/o’g’)