Cologne - In their first competitive meeting for over 14 years, Rhineland rivals 1. FC Köln and Fortuna Düsseldorf shared the spoils in a 1-1 draw on Sunday afternoon.

Mike Büskens' visitors, relegated from the Bundesliga last season, went in front early on, courtesy of summer signing Charlison Benschop, but after a sluggish first-half performance the Billy Goats came onto their game and deservedly equalised through Anthony Ujah midway through the second 45. The result leaves Düsseldorf on four points after two matches, with Köln registering their second successive draw.

Düsseldorf in command


After a fairly cagey opening to the backdrop of a long since sold-out RheinEnergieStadion, the contest's first chance of note in the twelfth minute promptly produced a goal. Mathis Bolly's cross from the left was met by Stefan Reisinger, whose powerful downward header drew a great save out of Timo Horn. Unfortunately for the Köln custodian, Benschop was perfectly placed to stab home the rebound. It was the 23-year-old Dutch frontman's first competitive goal for his new club and, five minutes later, he went close again, firing into the side netting from a tight angle.

As the first half unfolded, the home side were evidently struggling for fluency and with the stray-pass count steadily rising, Fortuna missed a great opportunity to establish a two-goal cushion on 33 minutes, Reisinger totally mistiming his leap for the ball when unmarked inside the box. Bolly then curled a long-range effort onto the roof of the net and, shortly before the interval, Horn was at full stretch to punch away a shot from Adam Bodzek, wrapping up a half fairly evenly balanced in terms of possession, but in which Düsseldorf had shown themselves altogether sharper in the tackle and their forward play.

Köln come on strong


Five minutes after the restart, some poor positional play by Köln's Dominic Maroh let Reisinger in for another scoring chance, the forward this time clipping the ball past the onrushing Horn but wide of the target as well. From there on in, however, the Billy Goats finally started to torque up the pressure, putting Fortuna on the back foot for the first time in the match. They were almost caught cold in the 64th minute though, Andreas Lambertz teeing up Bolly with a clear sight of goal, only for Horn to come to his side's rescue again with another reflex stop.

Three minutes later, Düsseldorf had double cause to regret that missed chance and earlier ones as Jonas Hector pumped in a ball from the left that Ujah met with a diving header into the corner of the guest's net to haul the hosts level. The Nigerian forward then went close twice in quick succession, first volleying Marcel Risse's cross inches wide, then heading the ball straight at the legs of Fortuna keeper Fabian Giefer. Going into the final ten minutes it was increasingly one-way traffic in the direction of the visitors' goal, although Düsseldorf remained alert to any sniff of an opportunity on the break. That kept things tense to the end, but 1-1 it finished.

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