Javier 'Chicharito' Hernandez maintained his rich vein of goalscoring form, but an unexpected brace from Dominic Maroh gave 1. FC Köln a 2-1 Rhine derby win over Bayer 04 Leverkusen on Saturday.
Leverkusen 1-2 Köln
Goals: 0-1 Maroh (17’), 1-1 Hernandez (33’), 1-2 Maroh (72')
In great goalscoring form of late, ‘Chicharito’ would have had a third goal in as many outings early on but for Timo Horn brilliantly pawing away a curling shot destined for the top corner. Instead, the Mexico international had to wait until after Maroh had stabbed home from close range for the visitors before striking. It was a wonderful move orchestrated by Kevin Kampl, and Admir Mehmedi’s inviting cross was met gloriously by ‘Chicharito’, whose header was much too good for Horn.
Anthony Modeste’s searing early season form in front of goal has cooled of late, but the French striker almost got back on track with an inventive backheel that flew narrowly wide. He was also the man pulled back by Kyriakos Papadopoulos to earn the Leverkusen defender a red card eight minutes after the break. The Greek international's aerial prowess would have been useful in countering Maroh, but instead, the Köln centre-back sent one header flashing wide before powering home a Marcel Risse corner to earn Peter Stöger's men local bragging rights.
Man of the match
Maroh had never scored more than one goal in a Bundesliga season, nevermind two in a single match. His performance was that of which derby legends are born.
Kampl’s form in a deeper role in midfield has been stunning of late. Could Roger Schmidt have finally found the perfect role for the Slovenia international?
- ‘Chicharito’ has now scored five goals in his last seven competitive outings.Maroh's brace took him to three Bundesliga goals in 33 top-flight appearances for Köln.His first goal was Köln’s first stemming from a free-kick since 8 November last year.The defender’s opening strike was his club’s first in four Bundesliga matches and in five competitive outings.
Leverkusen: Leno - Boenisch, Tah, Papadopoulos, Wendell (Kießling 78') - Toprak (c), Kampl – Mehmedi (Ramalho 56’), Calhanoglu, Bellarabi (Brandt 46’) – Hernandez
Köln: Horn - Risse, Maroh, Heintz, Hector – Lehmann (c), Vogt - Osako (Sorensen 90+1'), Bittencourt (Jojic 82') – Hosiner (Svento 71') - Modeste