TSG win cup thriller in Würzburg

TSG Hoffenheim beat Würzburger Kickers 5-4 on penalties (FT: 2-2; ET: 3-3) on a nervy night in Bavaria to book their place in the DFB Cup Second Round. The visitors went 2-0 ahead through Pavel Kaderabek and Ihlas Bebou, only for their hosts to peg them back to 2-2 and take the game to extra-time. Adam Szalai then scored to re-establish TSG's lead, but Würzburg equalised again and it was only thanks to the shootout heroics of Oliver Baumann, who saved two spot-kicks, that TSG ultimately prevailed.

Personnel & tactics:

Head coach Alfred Schreuder included two of the new signings, Sebastian Rudy and Ihlas Bebou, in the starting XI on his competitive debut in the dugout. TSG Hoffenheim lined up for their DFB Cup First Round tie away to Würzburger Kickers in a 3-5-2 formation, with goalkeeper Oliver Baumann protected by a back three of Stefan Posch, Kevin Vogt and Benjamin Hübner. Pavel Kaderabek and the returning Steven Zuber occupied the wing-back berths.

New signing Rudy lined up alongside Florian Grillitsch and Dennis Geiger in a three-man midfield, while Bebou and Vincenzo Grifo started up front together.

Schreuder made his first change in the interval, bringing on Adam Szalai in place of Grifo. The next substitution came with 20 minutes to go as Joshua Brenet replaced Zuber at left-back (72). Robert Skov was then handed his competitive debut in a TSG shirt shortly after the home side had equalised. The Dane replaced Geiger (78).

At the beginning of extra-time, Schreuder used his fourth and final substitution: Lukas Rupp entered the fray in place of Grillitsch.

Moment of the match:

The 12th penalty: having already saved a spot-kick earlier in the shootout, goalie Oliver Baumann made another stop to ensure TSG Hoffenheim would reach the Second Round.

Number of the game: 489

TSG Hoffenheim completed 489 passes in the first half. That's the most for any 45 minutes in the DFB Cup since data collection began.

Würzburger Kickers line-up: Verstappen – Hansen, Hägele, Schupan – Hemmerich, Sontheimer, Gnaase (Widemann, 66), Kwadwo – Kaufmann, Pfeiffer – Baumann (Vrenezi, 58)

TSG Hoffenheim line-up: Baumann – Posch, Vogt, Hübner – Kaderabek, Rudy, Grillitsch (Rupp, 91), Geiger (Skov, 79), Zuber (Brenet, 72) – Bebou, Grifo (Szalai, 46)

Goals: 0-1 Kaderabek (29) 0-2 Bebou (54), 1-2 Kaufmann (68), 2-2 Vrenezi (75), 2-3 Szalai (99), 3-3 Pfeiffer (115)

Penalty shootout: 0-1 Szalai scores, 1-1 Hägele scores, 1-2 Bebou scores, 2-2 Schuppan scores, 2-3 Skov scores, Baumann saves from Kaufmann, 2-4 Rudy scores, 3-4 Vrenezi scores, Verstappen saves from Rupp, 4-4 Widemann scores, 4-5 Posch scores, Baumann saves from Hansen

Match highlights

12. Min.

Rudy shoots from 20 metres out following a corner-kick. Verstappen gets a hand to the ball but parries it into the danger zone. It falls to Hübner, whose close-range header is kept out by the Würzburg shot-stopper.

29. Min.

Hübner is thwarted by the strong reactions of Verstappen following a Grifo corner, but the loose ball falls to Kaderabek and the Czech international heads into an empty net from close range.

40. Min.

Zuber cuts into the centre from the left and hits a right-footed shot from 20 metres, but Verstappen makes yet another strong save. 

54. Min.

Rudy plays a brilliant through-pass into the path of Bebou, who beats his marker and mercilessly hammers the ball into the top corner. Beautiful goal!

65. Min.

Würzburg have a chance to pull one back against the run of play, but a cross from the right into the middle is fired narrowly wide by Pfeiffer.

68. Min.

Würzburg cross the ball towards the back post from the left and Kaufmann is left with a simple tap-in from close range.

75. Min.

A penalty is awarded for a foul on Kaufmann by Brenet and Vrenezi comfortably dispatches the ensuing spot-kick.

79. Min.

Würzburg almost turn the game around completely but fortunately an unmarked Widemann fires narrowly wide of the target from 10 metres out.

99. Min.

Bebou and Szalai play a quick one-two and the Hungarian is left with the simple task of tapping the ball home from four metres. What an important goal!

108. Min.

Würzburg have a major chance to restore parity. Widemann receives the ball in acres of space but Baumann makes a strong save to thwart another potential equaliser.

109. Min.

The next chance comes a minute later: Pfeiffer controls the ball brilliantly and thunders a volley against the crossbar. His follow-up bounces back off the woodwork too. Close shave for TSG.

111. Min.

The visitors almost make it 4-2: Bebou again gets the better of his opponent and spots Szalai behind him, but his shot goes narrowly over.

115. Min.

A corner comes into the box and Pfeiffer wins the aerial battle, heading the ball into the net off the inside of the far post.

120 + 1. Min.

Baumann saves the final penalty from Hansen and ensures that TSG progress to the next round.

Match facts and statistics »

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