Taiwo Awoniyi and Sheraldo Becker strike as Union Berlin defeats Wolfsburg
Taiwo Awoniyi scored his sixth goal of the season to help Union Berlin swap places with Wolfsburg in the standings with a 2-0 victory in the capital, placing Urs Fischer’s men in fifth place in the standings.
Union Berlin 2-0 Wolfsburg
Goals: 1-0 Awoniyi (pass: Haraguchi) 49 ‘, 2-0 Becker (assist: Voglsammer) 82 ‘
The international break was the occasion of a reset for Wolfsburg coach Mark van Bommel, who had seen his team’s good start to the season evaporate with a streak of five games without a win. He made a bold move leaving Wout Weghorst and Ridle Baku on the bench, and his team had a similar mentality when they presented the game to their hosts. The chances were limited, however, and the first real open was called off by Maximilian Philipp, who attempted to lob Andreas Luthe after being caught out of his line, but his effort also cleared the crossbar. Neither goaltender would have to make a save in the first 45 minutes, but that quickly changed in the second half.
Hosts walked past within five minutes of reboot. Genki Haraguchi touched Max Kruse’s pass into Awoniyi’s path, which showed exactly why he rubbed shoulders with Robert Lewandowski and Erling Haaland at the top of the scorers’ standings with an accomplished finish ahead of Koen Casteels. Josuha Guilavogui fired a low shot in front of Luthe’s goal as Wolfsburg looked to equalize things immediately, and Dodi Lukebakio hit the post from close range. Baku and Weghorst were both sent off by van Bommel, and the latter’s first two touches of the ball nearly equalized, but for a brave double stoppage of Luthe’s legs. Weghorst sent a free header straight to Luthe as Wolves redoubled their efforts to find an equalizer, but at the break Sheraldo Becker doubled the hosts’ lead and put the game to bed, nodding in the center of substitute Andreas Voglsammer.
- Union defeated Wolfsburg for the first time in its history, on the fifth attempt.
- They extended their home unbeaten record to 21 straight matches, dating back to Matchday 1 of the 2020/21 season and a 3-1 loss to Augsburg.
- It was the Union’s fourth consecutive victory, while Wolfsburg now have six games without a win, including three consecutive league losses.
- Wolfsburg lost three consecutive Bundesliga games in December 2019 – January 2020.
- With his sixth goal of the season, Awoniyi now has more than what he scored in last season, setting a new personal best in one season.
- Maximilian Arnold made his 259th Bundesliga game for Wolfsburg, joining Diego Benaglio at the top of Wolves’ most all-time table.
- Weghorst started on the bench for the first time in over a year (last on September 27, 2020 in a 1-1 draw at Freiburg).
Union: Luthe – Friedrich (c), Knoche, Jaeckel – Ryerson, Prömel, Khedira, Gießelmann – Haraguchi (Becker 73 ‘) – Awoniyi (Behrens 84’), Kruse (Voglsammer 73 ‘)
Unused subtitles: Rönnow, Öztunali, Oczipka, Baumgartl, Trimmel, Möhwald
Outside: Wszolek (foot)
Coach: Urs fischer
Wolfsburg: Casteels (c) – Mbabu, Bornauw, Brooks, Roussillon – Guilavogui (Vranckx 60 ‘), Arnold – Philipp (Weghorst 68’), Waldschmidt (Baku 60 ‘), Lukebakio (F. Nmecha 83’) – L. Nmecha
Unused subtitles: Pervan, van de Ven, Paulo Otavio, Steffen, Ginczek
Outside: Bialek (knee), Gerhardt (foot), Lacroix (suspended), Mehmedi (muscular), Otavio (ankle), Schlager (knee), William (knee)
Coach: Marc van Bommel