Hat-trick hero Joel Pohjanpalo stole the show as Bayer 04 Leverkusen produced a come-from-behind 3-1 win against Hamburger SV.
Despite suffering an early set back after losing Karim Bellarabi to a suspected groin strain inside the opening minute, Leverkusen established an early grip on the encounter. Time and space were luxuries not afforded to either side and, with both bereft of any end product in the final third, goalscoring chances were few and far between in the opening half hour. Admir Mehmedi squandered the first clear-cut chance by heading straight at Rene Adler, while at the other end Nicolai Müller failed to get the better of Bernd Leno in a one-on-one.
The pace of proceedings showed no signs of waning in the second half, but it was Hamburg who broke the deadlock against the run of play when Bernd Leno failed to cut out Maichel Gregoritsch’s through ball allowing Bobby Wood to slot into an empty net. Die Werkself responded as Chicharito struck the woodwork, but it was substitute Pohjanpalo who stepped up as the match-winner by producing a stunning hat-trick to ensure Leverkusen’s first home game of the season ended in victory.
Man of the Match
All eyes were on Chicharito at the start of the game, but it is super-sub Pohjanpalo who will dominate the headlines after coming off the bench to score a superbly taken hat-trick in the final 11 minutes of the game.
- Pohjanpalo is the third Leverkusen player to score in his first two games for the club, but neither Ulf Kirsten 1990/91, nor Burak Kaplan 2009/10 managed the feat as super-subs.Both Wood and Pohjanpalo’s first two shots on goal in Germany’s top flight both found the back of the net.The American is the first Hamburg player to score in his first two Bundesliga games for the club since Boubacar Sanogo in 2006/07.
Leverkusen: Leno - Henrichs, Tah, Toprak, Wendell (Jedvaj 88') - Kampl, Bender – Bellarabi (Brandt 3’), Calhanoglu, Mehmedi (Pohjanpalo 72') - Chicharito
Coach: Roger Schmidt
Hamburg: Adler - Sakai, Spahic, Cleber, Ostrzolek – Holtby (Ekdal 66’), Hunt - Müller, Gregoritsch, Kostic (Halilovic 86') – Wood (Lasogga 81')
Coach: Bruno Labbadia