Mönchengladbach - VfB Stuttgart recovered from an early goal to record a hard-earned 2-1 victory away at Borussia Mönchengladbach on Matchday 12.
After Martin Stranzl's excellent drive had put the Foals in front early on, Martin Harnik equalised for VfB, before Roel Brouwers turned Cristian Molinaro's cross into his own net to give Bruno Labbadia's side the win.
Gladbach were in high spirits following their impressive win at Greuther Fürth last week, and it was they that struck first blood early on. There seemed little danger when a bouncing ball dropped to Stranzl 30 yards out, but there was nothing the VfB backline could do to stop the veteran defender's crashing half-volley nestling in the bottom corner.
To Stuttgart’s credit, their response could hardly have been swifter. Molinaro found space to deliver a deep cross and Harnik leapt well to force in a header, restoring parity in a remarkable opening spell. Both sides were contributing to a fast-paced encounter, and Mike Hanke went close for Gladbach, before Ibrahima Traore flashed a free-kick just over for VfB.
In the second period, the match had become somewhat flat in comparison with that explosive start, and other than a Christian Gentner header, which deflected against the post, neither side created much. It seemed that something out-of-the-ordinary was going to be required to trouble the scores again and it arrived on 72 minutes, as Molinaro’s hopeful cross was acrobatically put into his own net by the unfortunate Brouwers.
Gladbach threw on Peniel Mlapa and Igor de Camargo to add some presence up front, but that left them vulnerable to the counter-attack and Gotoku Sakai went close to making it 3-1 from a tight angle. The Foals laid siege to the Stuttgart goal in the final few minutes, but neither Juan Arango's agonisingly deflected shot nor a Martin Stranzl header could stop them falling to their second home loss of the campaign.
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