Daniel Caligiuri scored the only goal of the game as Augsburg posted a valuable 1-0 victory in their relegation six-pointer away to Arminia Bielefeld in the Matchday 25 opener on Friday.
Separated by just two points at kick-off, the stakes and potential consequences for this season’s relegation tussle were not lost on either team, leading to a somewhat cagey opening. Bielefeld gradually began to assert themselves though, and captain Fabian Klos twice tested Rafal Gikiewicz with shots from the edge of the box, but neither effort had enough power to beat the visiting goalkeeper. Fabian Kunze was next to have a go, but his rising shot sailed over the bar, while Patrick Wimmer had two attempts blocked before Gikiewicz even had to intervene. Augsburg were largely kept at bay at the opposite end of the pitch, although Michael Greogritsch almost put his side in front with an opportunistic near-post header that went just wide following a defensive mix-up.
The away side did take the lead against the run of play early in the second period, however. Capitalising on a wayward pass out from the back, Augsburg attacked down the left through Iago, whose cross into the middle was met first-time at the back post by Caligiuri, who drilled a low shot into the corner. Momentum swung in Augsburg’s favour after that and they were so effective at frustrating Bielefeld that the home team’s two most creative players – Wimmer and Masaya Okugawa – were both substituted off midway through the half. Markus Weinzierl’s side looked the more likely to add to the scoreline in the closing stages as they pressed forward, but they never seriously threatened Stefan Ortega’s goal again. Nor did they need to, as Caligiuri’s effort proved enough to take three valuable points and leapfrog Bielefeld into 14th in the table.
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- Caligiuri's goal was his third of the season so far, and first from open play following two converted penalties.
- Iago now has four league assists in 2021/22.
- Augsburg are yet to lose in eight Bundesliga and Bundesliga 2 meetings with Arminia (W6, D2).
- Bielefeld lost for the first time in seven matches at home, having previously won two and drawn four.
- This was only Augsburg's second away win of the season, following a 2-0 triumph in Cologne on Matchday 15.
Watch: Caligiuri: “Delighted with important win”
Bielefeld: Ortega - Brunner (de Medina 76'), Ramos, Nilsson, Andrade - Kunze, Vasiliadis - Wimmer (Krüger 67'), Castro (Bello 76'), Okugawa (Hack 67') - Klos (c) (Lasme 76')
Unused subs: Kapino, Pieper, Laursen, Prietl
Out: Schöpf (knock), Serra (knock)
Coach: Frank Kramer
Augsburg: Gikiewicz - Gouweleeuw (c), Oxford, Uduokhai (Winther 33') - Caligiuri (Framberger 87'), Gruezo, Maier (Moravek 87'), Iago - Vargas (Pedersen 68') - Sarenren Bazee (Hahn 68'), Gregoritsch
Unused subs: Koubek, Niederlechner, Pepi, Zeqiri
Out: Dorsch (suspended), Finnbogason (groin), Gumny (ankle), Strobl (knee)
Coach: Markus Weinzierl
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