Tue, Sep 02, 2014 - Page 20 News List

Moenchengladbach settle for a draw against SC Freiburg

AFP, BERLIN

SC Freiburg missed a penalty, but picked up their first point of the new Bundesliga season following a 0-0 draw with Borussia Moenchengladbach on Sunday.

Swiss attacker Admir Mehmedi scooped a spot-kick high over the bar midway through the second half in a drab encounter at Freiburg’s Mage Solar Stadion.

Gladbach had beaten FK Sarajevo 7-0 in the Europa League playoffs on Thursday last week, but a fifth competitive match in 16 days looked to be a step too far for the visitors.

Freiburg goalkeeper Roman Buerki tipped over a shot from fellow Swiss international Granit Xhaka 14 minutes into a game that was desperately short of goalmouth action.

Approaching the hour mark, Mehmedi found Jonathan Schmid at the back post, but his volley was comfortably turned behind by Gladbach goalkeeper Yann Sommer.

Freiburg were given a great chance to go in front when Gladbach defender Tony Jantschke chopped down home substitute Maximilian Philipp after 62 minutes. However, Mehmedi blazed over, meaning the home side are still waiting for their first goal of the new campaign.

Earlier, FSV Mainz 05 and Hannover 96 also played out a scoreless draw.

Mainz had more of the game in the first half, but Hannover striker Joselu went closest to scoring before Hiroshi Kiyotake had a shot cleared off the line for the visitors in the second half.

Koo Ja-cheol, who scored an injury-time penalty in Mainz’s draw at Paderborn on the opening day, had a decent appeal for another spot-kick turned down on 13 minutes after a challenge from Leonardo Bittencourt. Shinji Okazaki fired wide from a tight angle inside the box and the Japanese striker then had his own appeal for a penalty waved away by referee Sascha Stegemann after going to ground under Hannover defender Marcelo.

Hannover, who beat Schalke last weekend, almost broke the deadlock six minutes into the second half after a botched clearance from Stefan Bell fell to Kiyotake.

The Japanese midfielder showed good footwork to create some space before drilling a shot toward the corner — Mainz thankful that Moritz was on the line to clear.

Joselu had a chance to win it with 13 minutes left but, after Artur Sobiech picked him out in the area, he could not direct the ball beyond Karius and both sides had to settle for a point.

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