A scoreless draw between Greuther Fürth and VfB Stuttgart will have done little to ease the pressure on two sides battling it out at the wrong end of the Bundesliga table.
With both teams mired in the Bundesliga's bottom three prior to kick-off, the start of the Rückrunde represented a fine chance to refocus and boost morale. A shoulder injury having limited him to just 17 minutes all season, Stuttgart's Sasa Kalajdzic returned to give the visitors a lift up front. The Austrian international forward looked menacing throughout the opening 45, sending a deflected shot into Sascha Burchert's arms before later attempting an overhead kick which the Fürth goalkeeper again gathered. Chasing what would have been only their second home win of the campaign, the Clover Leaves came closest to hitting the front midway through the first half when Branimir Hrgota's powerful close range header was parried out by Florian Müller.
Looking to build on a return of four points in their last three games prior to the mid-season break, Fürth came looking for more after the restart. Taking advantage of an Orel Mangala error at the back, Hrgota chipped a goal-bound effort over Müller only for Waldemar Anton to hack away to safety. Having taken maximum points on their travels just once this season, Pellegrino Matarazzo's men raised their efforts and looked likeliest to score in the game's closing stages. Kalajdzic headed a Borna Sosa corner wide of the upright before Wataru Endo and Chris Führich saw a couple of shots in quick succession blocked by Marco Meyerhöfer. Stuttgart substitute Ömer Beyaz subsequently fired into the side-netting at the death as Fürth held on for a point.
- Kalajdzic made his first appearance since Matchday 2.
- Burchert has played in ten of Fürth's 18 games, with the team earning all six of their points this season with him in goal.
- Fürth have only won one game this term, beating Union Berlin 1-0 on Matchday 15. It is also their sole victory at home in their one-and-a-half-season Bundesliga history.
- The Clover Leaves have kept clean sheets in three of their last four Bundesliga matches.
- Stuttgart have only won one of nine away matches in 2021/22, drawing six and losing four.
- VfB have now used 32 players this Bundesliga season, more than in any previous campaign.
Fürth: Burchert – Meyerhöfer, Griesbeck, Viergever, Itter (Willems 78') – Seguin, Christiansen, Tillman (Green 89') – Dudziak (Abiama 78') – Leweling (Nielsen 62'), Hrgota (c) (Bauer 89')
Unused subs: Schaffran, Asta, Pululu, Itten,
Out: Barry (thigh), Funk (knee), Hoogma (not included), Kehr (knee), Ngankam (knee)
Coach: Stefan Leitl
Stuttgart: Müller – Stenzel, Anton, Ito – Massimo (Tibidi 81'), Endo (c), Mangala, Sosa – Förster (Beyaz 62') – Führich (Egloff 89'), Kalajdzic
Unused subs: Bredlow, Kempf, Mola, Coulibaly, Millot, Nartey
Out: Ahamada (not included), Faghir (not included), Karazor (foot), Klimowicz (not included), Marmoush (Africa Cup of Nations), Mavropanos (match fitness), Sankoh (knee), Silas (not included), Thommy (match fitness)
Coach: Pellegrino Matarazzo