A stunning Cologne revelled amid a carnival atmosphere as Steffen Baumgart's side scored seven times to leave Werder Bremen battered and bruised on the teams' return to Bundesliga action.
Cologne 7-1 Werder Bremen
Goals: 1-0 Maina 9' (assist: Skhiri), 2-0 Tigges 16' (assist: Kainz), 3-0 Tigges 21' 4-0 Skhiri 30', 5-0 Huseinbacic 36' (assist: Tigges), 5-1 Füllkrug (assist: Ducksch), 6-1 Skhiri 54' (assist: Maina), 7-1 Friedl (o.g.) 76'
Showing just one point from their previous five games, Cologne were down in 13th and hoping for a change in fortunes as they restarted their Bundesliga challenge. The home faithful were understandably keen to give their side a lift, raising the noise prior to kick off at the RheinEnergieStadion. What followed thereafter left Werder electrified. That the sloppy visitors were masters of their own demise was altogether apparent, but Cologne’s remarkable efficiency to put the River Islanders to the sword was breathtaking. A ninth-minute breakaway from the Billy Goats ended with Linton Maina sliding a finish into the far corner. Soon afterwards, Steffen Tigges powered in off Milos Veljkovic for 2-0. Jiri Pavlenka, Werder’s beleaguered goalkeeper, then attempted to help clean up his side’s wayward passing but only ended up out of possession and far from his goal. The grateful Tigges grasped the opportunity to float in his second from just inside the Bremen half. Ellyes Skhiri and Denis Huseinbasic added a couple more before Niclas Füllkrug scored with a thumping header that perfectly encapsulated the pent-up visiting frustration.
If Werder were hoping for a second-half reprieve, their wishes would soon be dashed by a home side that appeared hungry for more. Tigges slashed a shot over the bar when the 24-year-old looked odds on to net his hat-trick. Despite that miss, a Cologne sixth never looked far away. It came when Skhiri acrobatically scissor-kicked home Maina’s pinpoint cross from the right. When Marco Friedl subsequently slammed into his own net from close range, the Green-Whites' misery was complete. For Cologne fans, the party was just getting started.
Watch: Tigges's finish from the halfway line
- Cologne have only ever scored five first-half goals on one other occasion, namely in May 1977 in a 6-1 win over Bochum.
- The last time Cologne scored seven goals in a Bundesliga game was in October 1983, in a 7-0 win over Eintracht Frankfurt.
- Werder had never before conceded five times in a first half in Germany's top flight.
- Cologne scored more than four goals in a competitive game for the first time under Steffen Baumgart.
- Tigges scored a double and provided an assist in the same match for the first time in his Bundesliga career.
- The game produced six first-half goals, another first this campaign.
Watch: Tigges talks through his goal from the halfway line
Cologne: Schwäbe - Schmitz, Hübers, Chabot, Hector (c) - Skhiri (Lemperle 67'), Martel - Maina (Diehl 81'), Huseinbasic (Olesen 59'), Kainz (Ljubicic 59') - Tigges (Selke 59')
Unused subs: Horn, Soldo, Schindler, Adamyan
Out: Andersson (knee), Dietz (cruciate ligament), Kilian (muscular), Lemperle (ankle), Limnios (cruciate ligament), Pedersen (muscular), Thielmann (thigh), Uth (pelvis)
Coach: Steffen Baumgart
Bremen: Pavlenka - Veljkovic, Stark (Pieper 60'), Friedl (c) - Weiser, Bittencourt (Stage 64'), Groß (Schmidt 46'), Gruev, Jung - Füllkrug, Ducksch (Dinkci 46')
Unused subs: Zetterer, Buchanan, Chiarodia, Burke, Mbom
Out: Agu (patella tendon), Schmid (knee)
Coach: Ole Werner
Watch: Veljkovic: "Mentality was absolutely unacceptable"
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