Late Erik Thommy strike and Rouwen Hennings rocket seal Fortuna Düsseldorf victory over Union Berlin
A dramatic Erik Thommy winner in the 90th-minute and an 11th strike of the season for Rouwen Hennings ended Fortuna Düsseldorf's winless run courtesy of a 2-1 victory over Union Berlin in the penultimate Bundesliga fixture of the decade.
Fortuna Düsseldorf 2-1 Union Berlin
Goals: 1-0 Hennings (38'), 1-1 Parensen (48'), 2-1 Thommy (90')
The penultimate fixture of the final round of 2019 Bundesliga matches saw these two sides take each other on for the first time in the top-flight. Düsseldorf, desperate to pick up a positive result that would guarantee they don't go into the winter break bottom, started brightly and saw Dawid Kownacki go close twice in the first half. Union slowly grew into the game, but neither side were able to truly test either goalkeeper despite the openness of the game. That was until Hennings latched onto Oliver Fink's flick-on from a Zack Steffen goal-kick and thundered a contender for Goal of the Season past Rafal Gikiewicz to give Fortuna a deserved lead at the break.
But the visitors found themselves level just three minutes into the second half, Michael Parensen prodding home from inside six yards after Marvin Friedrich's header was blocked on the line. That equaliser came from a Union corner, highlighting how dangerous the Eisern have been from set-pieces this season. This game was no different, the Berliners posing their biggest threats whenever they won a dead ball that they could attack the Fortuna box with. Urs Fischer's side were the better side for large parts of the remaining time, but it was Fortuna that grabbed winner, second-half substitute Thommy firing in from range with a dipping, swerving strike in the 90th-minute that moves Düsseldorf out of the automatic relegation places.
- Fortuna ended what was the longest winless run of any Bundesliga team (six matches).
- Hennings's opener equalled the Fortuna club record for most goals during the first half of a campaign (Klaus Allofs, 11 goals, 1978/79).
- He now has 11 of Fortuna's 17 league goals so far this season. It makes up 65 per cent of Fortuna's goals, the the highest percentage of goals scored by a single player for any team in the league.
- Union have scored nine of their 20 goals this season courtesy of set-pieces. It is more than any team in the Bundesliga.
- Union have taken one point across the 10 games in which they have conceded the first goal.
- Union and Fortuna have played each other 26 times, but this was their first meeting in the Bundesliga and this match-up is the 927th different pairing in Bundesliga history.
Watch: Steffen reflects on first half of the season in the Bundesliga
Fortuna: Steffen - Zimmermann, Ayhan, Hoffmann, Suttner - Bodzek, Morales - Ampomah (Thommy 67'), Fink, Kownacki (Bormuth 90+2') - Hennings (c)
Unused subs: Kastenmeier, Barkok, Ofori, Pledl, Gießelmann, Contento, Zimmer
Out: Karaman (pneumonia), Stöger (match fitness), Zimmer (knock)
Coach: Friedhelm Funkel
Union: Gikiewicz - Friedrich, Hübner (Mees 46'), Parensen - Trimmel (c), Gentner, Andrich, Lenz - Ingvartsen (Ujah 62'), Bülter (Ryerson 83') - Andersson
Unused subs: Nicolas, Subotic, Polter, Kroos, Schmiedebach, Becker
Out: Gogia (torn ACL), Kroos (knock), Prömel (knee), Schlotterbeck (knee)
Coach: Urs Fischer
5 reasons Bayern will STILL win the title
Bayern need a favour from Mainz if they're to pip BVB to the title, but the odds are not completely stacked against them...
Title back in Dortmund's hands
Dortmund took advantage of Bayern's slip-up to go two points clear heading into the final weekend...
Haller fuelling Dortmund's title dream
Nearing his best after his cancer battle, the BVB striker can cap a remarkable season by winning the Bundesliga title.