There was no separating Bavarian rivals Greuther Fürth and Augsburg at the Sportpark Ronhof on Saturday, the goalless draw leaving hosts Fürth 13 points adrift of safety at the midway point of the season.
Fürth began the day rooted to the foot of the table, 13 points worse off than their Bavarian rivals who were themselves in the relegation play-off spot, but they started the brighter of the two sides. Jamie Leweling found space in behind Augsburg left-back Iago early on and fired a low cross to the back post, but nobody was there to meet it. Germany U21 forward Leweling looked the most likely to force Fürth into the lead, another cross midway through the half making its way to the penalty spot before Niklas Dorsch hooked the danger clear. Dorsch created a good chance at the other end soon after, chipping the ball through to Andre Hahn, but his low, drilled shot was well saved by Sascha Burchert. The former Bayern Munich youngster then volleyed a shot narrowly wide as Augsburg staged something of a comeback, but the deadlock remained intact by the break.
Augsburg coach Markus Weinzierl brought Ruben Vargas on at the start of the second half, and the Swiss winger created a gilt-edged chance minutes later when he found Hahn at the near post, but Burchert instinctively stuck out a leg to deny the one-time Germany international. Augsburg were then relieved to see a Max Christiansen shot deflect over at the other end soon after. Vargas should really have made it 1-0 to Augsburg just past the hour, but he fired wide with the goal at his mercy. Noah Sarenren Bazee and Burchert collided on the edge of the Fürth box late on, but there was to be no sting in the tail for either side as it ended 0-0.
- Fürth have only won one game this season, beating Union Berlin 1-0 on Matchday 15.
- A draw here was at least their fifth point in the Hinrunde - all five have been picked up at their Sportpark Ronhof.
- With four goals and three assists so far, captain Branimirn Hrgota has been directly involved in seven of Fürth's 13 goals (53.8 per cent) in 2021/22.
- With a top speed of 22.03 mph (35.46 km/h), Vargas is Augsburg’s fastest player this season, and the 11th quickest in the Bundesliga overall.
- After picking up his fifth yellow card of the season, Reece Oxford will miss Augsburg's trip to Hoffenheim in January.
- Augsburg's triumph in Cologne on Matchday 15 remains their only away win of the campaign.
Fürth: Burchert – Meyerhöfer, Griesbeck, Bauer, Willems – Seguin, Christiansen, Tillman (Dudziak 71') – Nielsen – Leweling, Hrgota (c) (Abiama 83')
Unused subs: Schaffran, Asta, Seufert, Sarpei, Itten, Itter, Green
Out: Funk (knee), Hoogma (knee), Jung (knee), Kehr (knee), Ngankam (knee), Viergever (ankle)
Coach: Stefan Leitl
Augsburg: Gikiewicz – Gumny, Gouweleeuw (c), Oxford, Iago – Caligiuri (Sarenren Bazee 73'), Maier, Dorsch, Pedersen (Vargas 46') – Hahn (Gregoritsch 59'), Zeqiri (Cordova 59')
Unused subs: Koubek, Moravek, Winther, Framberger, Salifou
Out: Finnbogason (thigh), Gruezo (knee), Niederlechner (knock), Strobl (knee), Uduokhai (not included)
Coach: Markus Weinzierl