Hoffenheim go fourth with victory in Cologne


Hoffenheim extended their winning run in the Bundesliga to four consecutive games to go fourth in the table thanks to Stefan Posch’s header in a narrow 1-0 win away to Cologne.

Cologne 0-1 Hoffenheim
Goals: 0-1 Posch 61' (assist: Raum)

Just four points separated the teams at kick-off, with both harbouring hopes of a top-six finish in what is an increasingly crowded upper third in the Bundesliga standings. That backdrop produced an intense, end-to-end encounter in which the sides essentially cancelled each other out with their aggressive high pressing, although Hoffenheim did manage to escape Cologne’s clutches to snatch a sight of goal on occasion. Ihlas Bebou, constantly on the prowl playing off the shoulder of the last defender, proved to be a headache for the home defence, first firing a shot off the post before being crowded out at close-range and seeing a near-post flick well saved. Still, the most clear-cut opening of the half fell to Anthony Modeste shortly before the interval, but the Frenchman failed to make a clean connection with Dejan Ljubicic’s cut-back and he blazed over unmarked from 10 yards out.

The Billy Goats carried that momentum into the second half and initially looked the more likely team to open the scoring. Hoffenheim needed a brilliant sliding tackle from Kevin Akpoguma to thwart Ljubicic as he was about to shoot when one-on-one with Oliver Baumann, while Modeste had the ball in the net following a free-kick, but it was disallowed for offside. The hosts would come to rue those misses as the visitors took the lead shortly afterwards when Stefan Posch headed in at the back post from a brilliant David Raum cross. Andrej Kramaric had the chance to extend their advantage only to be denied by Marvin Schwäbe at close range, with the rebound bouncing off him and wide, before Christoph Baumgartner struck a post. Modeste went close with a couple of headers in the closing stages as Cologne pressed for an equaliser, but Hoffenheim held on to climb up to fourth.

Match stats

  • Modeste wore the captain's armband for the first time in his Bundesliga career.
  • Cologne January signing Julian Chabot made his Bundesliga debut in this game.
  • Posch scored his second league goal of the season - his first was also against Cologne in a 5-0 win on Matchday 8.
  • Hoffenheim have now scored 100 Bundesliga goals under the guidance of head coach Sebastian Hoeneß.
  • Cologne (14) are the only team to have scored more goals than Hoffenheim (12) from crosses into the box.
  • Cologne have not won in 12 Bundesliga matches against Hoffenheim, losing the last eight in a row.

Watch: Posch: "I don't score very often so it's a cool feeling!"


Cologne: Schwäbe - Schmitz, Kilian, Chabot (Duda 89'), J. Horn (Schindler 80') - Skhiri, Özcan - Ljubicic (Thielmann 72'), Uth (Lemperle 89'), Kainz (Andersson 72') - Modeste (c)
Unused subs: T. Horn, Arrey Mbi, Ehizibue, Schaub
Out: Hector (personal reasons), Hübers (not included)
Coach: Steffen Baumgart 

Hoffenheim: Baumann (c) - Posch, Grillitsch, Akpoguma (Vogt 78') - Kaderabek, Baumgartner, Samassekou (Adams 90'+2), Stiller, Raum - Bebou (Rutter 56'), Kramaric (Dabbur 78')
Unused subs: Philipp, Bruun Larsen, Che, Bischof
Out: Bicakcic (knee), Geiger (concussion), Hübner (ill), Nordtveit (thigh), Richards (foot), Rudy (hamstring), Skov (thigh)
Coach: Sebastian Hoeneß