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bundesliga

Vincenzo Grifo earns Freiburg 1-0 win at VfB Stuttgart

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Vincenzo Grifo headed in the only goal of the game as Freiburg claimed regional spoils with a 1-0 win at VfB Stuttgart.

VfB Stuttgart 0-1 Freiburg
Goal: 0-1 Grifo 11’ (assist: Sildillia)

The first efforts of this southwest derby fell to the hosts as Josha Vagnoman headed wide and Chris Führich tested Mark Flekken, but it was Freiburg who took the lead with their first notable attack when a Kilian Sildillia cross from deep on the right went all the way through to Vincenzo Grifo to turn in at the far post. Michael Gregoritsch put a header wide during a period where the visitors looked to calm the game before Stuttgart shifted a gear again at the Mercedes-Benz Arena. Konstantinos Mavropanos and Sasa Kalajdzic both forced good reaction stops out of Flekken but were unable to find a breakthrough as VfB went into half-time trailing for the sixth consecutive meeting with Freiburg.

Stuttgart came out for the second half with greater intent and pushed their visitors back. Borna Sosa had the best of the chances when he got in behind down the left but failed to beat Flekken at his near post. The Croatian’s rampages down that side forced Freiburg into a tactical switch to a back three. Even then, the always lively Silas – now playing up front – almost drew Stuttgart level when he ran onto a through ball but was unable to beat Flekken on the angle, with Freiburg having their goalkeeper to thank as they bounce back from last week’s defeat to Borussia Dortmund. Stuttgart suffered their first loss of the campaign after two opening draws.

Match stats

  • Grifo’s goal was his 37th in the Bundesliga but the first with his left foot. Another one was with his head, the remaining 35 with his right.
  • Top dogs for headed goals last season with 16, Freiburg have opened the scoring courtesy of headers in each of their three league games in 2022/23.
  • Christian Streich took charge of his 400th competitive match as Freiburg head coach.
  • Stuttgart have now gone 23 home games in a row without a clean sheet. Only Rot-Weiss Essen and Homburg have ever had longer runs without a shutout at home in the Bundesliga.
  • Having scored in each of the previous 12 encounters, Stuttgart have now drawn blanks in their last two games against Freiburg.
  • Freiburg have now won their last five league encounters with Stuttgart and are unbeaten in seven (W5, D2).

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Watch: Mark Flekken: "A huge deal for me"

Teams

Stuttgart: Müller - Mavropanos, Anton, Ito – Vagnoman (Perea 85’), Endo (c), Ahamada (Millot 78’), Sosa (Pfeiffer  71’) - Führich (Egloff  71’) - Kalajdzic, Silas
Unused subs: Bredlow, Mola, Stenzel, Karazor, Kastanaras
Out: Coulibaly (toe), Nartey (ankle)
Coach:
Pellegrino Matarazzo

Freiburg: Flekken - Sildillia (Siquet 81’), Ginter, Lienhart, Günter (c) - Eggestein, Höfler - Sallai (Gulde 60’), Doan (Jeong 60’), Grifo (Keitel 81’) - Gregoritsch (Kyereh 81’)
Unused subs: Uphoff, Petersen, Schlotterbeck, Weißhaupt
Out:
Ezekwem (muscular), Höler (metatarsal), Kübler (thigh), Schade (abdominal)
Coach: Christian Streich