bundesliga

Nicolas Höfler and Vincenzo Grifo seal win for Freiburg over Greuther Fürth

Nicolas Höfler and Vincenzo Grifo grabbed a goal apiece as Freiburg saw off bottom side Greuther Fürth with a comfortable 3-1 win.

Freiburg 3-1 Greuther Fürth
Goals: 1-0 Asta (o.g. 20’), 2-0 Höfler 39’ (assist: Grifo), 2-1 Leweling 74’ (assist: Hrgota), 3-1 Grifo (pen. 79’)

Freiburg dominated the early part of the match with five unanswered shots on goal in the first 25 minutes, but took the lead in an unusual way. Höler put in a cross that looked fairly harmless, only for Simon Asta to misdirect his attempted headed clearance into his own net under very little pressure. The hosts never let up and doubled their lead from a corner as Grifo crossed to the near post where Höfler rose high and sent the ball bouncing off Marius Funk and the woodwork before settling in the net. Freiburg were in complete control of the match as the teams took to the dressing room for the break.

Early in the second half, Fürth looked like they wouldn’t go down without a fight, with Julian Green's snap-shot forcing a smart save from Mark Flekken. The Clover Leaves were much improved, but Freiburg held their nerve and, more importantly, their lead. However, they couldn’t weather the storm forever. Fürth’s persistence paid off late in the half when Jamie Leweling ran onto a Branimir Hrgota cross and dispatched the ball past Flekken. Just when the hope of a comeback was in view, Fürth conceded a penalty, which Grifo slotted coolly into the top corner. With the final whistle, third-placed Freiburg had extended their club record unbeaten run to 12 competitive matches and recorded their first home win in their new stadium.

Match stats

  • Twenty-two points at this juncture in a Bundesliga season is a club record for the Black Forest side.
  • Freiburg have conceded a league-low seven goals after ten matches. Fürth have shipped a division-high 27.
  • Three of Fürth’s six Bundesliga goals so far this term have been Hrgota penalties. Today’s assist was his first of the season.
  • Greuther have made the worst-ever start to a Bundesliga season after ten matches (one point and a goal difference of -20).
  • Nuremberg hold the unwanted Bundesliga record for most defeats in a row (11). The luckless Clover Leaves have now lost their last eight.
  • Fürth are the own goal kings: Asta’s goal was the third own goal for the Clover Leaves this season. No other club has conceded so many own goals.

Line-ups

Freiburg: Flekken - Kübler, Lienhart, N. Schlotterbeck - Schade (Weißhaupt 83'), Eggestein (Keitel 83'), Höfler (Haberer 75'), Günter (c) - Jeong (Demirovic 75'), Höler, Grifo
Unused subs: Uphoff, Gulde, Sildillia, K. Schlotterbeck, Burkart
Out: Petersen (knee), Sallai (knee), Schmid (match fitness)
Coach: Christian Streich

Fürth: Funk - Asta, Sarpei, Viergever (Barry 64'), Willems (Itter 76') - Seguin, Griesbeck (Christiansen 42'), Green (Tillman 76') - Leweling - Itten, Hrgota (c)
Unused subs: Schaffran, Fein
Out: Bauer (not included), Burchert (not included), Dudziak (not included), Hoogma (knee), Jung (knee), Meyerhöfer (cold), Ngankam (knee), Nielsen (ankle)
Coach: Stefan Leitl