bundesliga

Marcus Thuram hits brace as Borussia Mönchengladbach come from behind to beat Freiburg

Marcus Thuram scored a brace as Borussia Mönchengladbach came from behind to beat Freiburg 2-1 and climb to seventh in the table, keeping alive their hopes of European qualification.

Borussia Mönchengladbach 2-1 Freiburg
Goals: 0-1 Sallai (10'), 1-1 Thuram (53'), 2-1 Thuram (60')

There was no indication that the match would pan out that way in the first half though, as Freiburg were by far the sprightlier of the two sides and looked dangerous with every foray forward. The visitors took the lead as early as the 10th minute with their first attack of note, as Ermedin Demirovic scampered down the left wing before crossing to the back post, where Roland Sallai arrived to prod in from close range. Sallai should have made it 2-0 midway through the half when sent clean through on goal by Demirovic, but he tried to beat Yann Sommer at his near post - rather than squaring to the unmarked Lucas Höler - and the Gladbach goalkeeper made a superb reflex save. Höler almost gave Freiburg a more comfortable advantage on the stroke of half time, connecting with Demirovic's flick-on from a corner at the back post, but his volley was hooked off the line by Sommer.

They would prove to be costly misses, as Gladbach looked a different side in the second half, pressing their opponents higher and more aggressively. The home side equalised early on when Thuram's volley from Lars Stindl's cross was deflected in off Baptiste Santamaria, leaving goalkeeper Florian Müller wrong-footed. Thuram turned the game on its head moments later, out-muscling Philipp Lienhart and going around Müller to slot in his second of the game. Gladbach thought they had given themselves a two-goal cushion when Santamaria turned Stindl's cross into his own net, but the goal wasn't given due to a foul by Stefan Lainer in the build-up. Freiburg brought on supersup Nils Petersen in the closing stages as they pushed for an equaliser, and had the ball in the net through Keven Schlotterbeck with virtually the last kick of the game, but it was ruled out for offside, allowing Gladbach to breathe a sigh of relief as they held on for all three points.

Match stats

  • Sallai scored in consecutive Bundesliga games for the first time, doing so with Freiburg's first shot of the game.
  • The Hungarian now has seven league goals this term, level with teammates Vincenzo Grifo and Petersen.
  • Thuram scored his fifth and sixth goals in the Bundesliga this term, his first league brace of 2020/21.
  • The Frenchman has hit four of those six goals in 2021.
  • Former Freiburg defender Matthias Ginter is one of four players to have played every single minute of the 2020/21 campaign. Another is Freiburg captain Christian Günter, as well as Union Berlin defenders Marvin Friedrich and Robin Knoche.
  • Freiburg's last and only Bundesliga win away at Gladbach came on 1 April 1995.

Watch: Wendt: "Thuram can do everything"

Line-ups

Gladbach: Sommer - Lainer, Beyer, Ginter, Wendt (Lazaro 82') - Kramer, Neuhaus - Wolf (Zakaria 46'), Stindl (c) (Herrmann 90'), Thuram (Embolo 76') - Plea
Unused subs:
Sippel, Lang, Traore, Jantschke
Out:
Bensebaini (suspended), Elvedi (calf), Hofmann (not included)
Coach: Marco Rose

Freiburg: Müller - Lienhart (Heintz 68'), Schlotterbeck, Gulde - Schmid, Santamaria, Keitel (Haberer 89'), Günter (c) - Sallai (Burkart 76'), Demirovic (Petersen 89'), Höler
Unused subs: Uphoff, Til, Kübler, Kwon, Tempelmann
Out: Grifo (not included), Höfler (suspended), Jeong (knock)
Coach: Christian Streich