Borussia Mönchengladbach have now won both games in which Alassane Plea has scored this season. - © imago images / Beautiful Sports
Borussia Mönchengladbach have now won both games in which Alassane Plea has scored this season. - © imago images / Beautiful Sports
bundesliga

Alassane Plea fires Borussia Mönchengladbach to derby day spoils over Cologne

Borussia Mönchengladbach’s derby day dominance over neighbours Cologne continued as Alassane Plea fired the visitors to a 1-0 win on Saturday afternoon.

Cologne 0-1 Borussia Mönchengladbach
Goals: 0-1 Plea (14’)

A RhineEnergieStadion draped in September sunshine provided a perfect backdrop to the 100th edition of this Rhineland derby; the 89th in the Bundesliga. The two raucous sets of supporters - separated by just 28 miles as the crow flies - were treated to a ferocious opening, aptly summed up by the first effort of note on goal; Denis Zakaria’s stunning volley thundering off the Cologne bar from 30 yards out. A quarter of an hour in, the visitors had their opener as Plea clinically punished Kingsley Ehizibue’s mistake with his second goal of the season. A dominant Gladbach had chances to go further in front at the break but failed to add to their lead.

It meant Cologne were far from out of the running and the hosts began the second period with greater intent, Dominick Drexler forcing Yann Sommer into a first save of the match in the early exchanges. Despite their best efforts, though, Cologne couldn’t find an equaliser as both Jhon Cordoba and Simon Terrode went close late on, leaving Gladbach to head back east along the A4 with all three points. The result leaves Cologne 15th with one win and three defeats from their first four matches back in the top flight, while Gladbach move fifth for the time being with their second win of the season.

Match stats

  • Cologne failed to score in a Bundesliga fixture for the first time this season.
  • But, with three points after four games, the Billy Goats already have as many as they had after 16 matches in 2017/18, the season they got relegated.
  • This was the 89th Bundesliga meeting between the Rhine rivals, making it the third-most contested local derby in Germany.
  • Gladbach have had the better of the rivalry, winning 49 of these meetings and scoring 175 goals.
  • Cologne’s 24 defeats to Gladbach on home soil are the most losses to a single team in the club’s history on their own turf. They have also conceded more Bundesliga goals (92), more penalties (18) and gone behind to their arch-rivals more times than to any other team.
  • No Borussia player has ever been sent off in this match, while Cologne have seen one of their players given their marching orders on four occasions. Roland Benschneider was the last man to receive a red card in the derby, back in February, 2016.

Line-ups

Cologne: Horn - Ehizibue, Bornauw, Czichos, Hector (c) - Schaub (Risse 74'), Skhiri, Verstraete (Kainz 86'), Drexler - Cordoba, Modeste (Terrode 74')
Unused subs: Kessler, Höger, Schindler, Koziello, Mere, Bader
Out: Clemens (cruciate ligament)
Coach: Achim Beierlorzer

Gladbach: Sommer (c) - Lainer, Ginter, Elvedi, Bensebaini - Neuhaus, Kramer (Strobl 83'), Zakaria - Embolo - Thuram (Benes 78'), Plea (Herrmann 87')
Unused subs: Sippel, Beyer, Traore, Jantschke, Raffael
Out: Hofmann (knee), Stindl (broken shin), Villalba (match fitness)
Coach: Marco Rose