Freiburg ensured Schalke's miserable start to the Bundesliga season continued on Matchday 5 as the Black Forest outfit earned a 1-0 victory at home on Tuesday evening.
Freiburg 1-0 Schalke
Goals: 1-0 Niederlechner (52')
Affronted at being bottom of the table at kick-off, Schalke immediately sought to stamp their authority on the game, attacking quickly and aggressively. They thought they had broken the deadlock in the fifth minute when Cedric Teuchert tapped in after Breel Embolo's shot was saved, but VAR ruled it out for offside. The Royal Blues dominated the remainder of the half as Freiburg struggled to make any impact in the final third and although Amine Harit and Hamza Mendyl both hit the post, the visitors were unable to make their superiority count.
They would come to rue those missed opportunities early in the second half as Freiburg regrouped and began to get forward with greater purpose. The home team soon took the lead too, with Florian Niederlechner tapping in the rebound after Ralf Fährmann could only parry Christian Günter's swerving drive from the edge of the area. Marco Terrazzino should have doubled Freiburg's lead moments later when presented with a free header inside the visitors' box, but he directed it straight at Fährmann. That allowed Schalke to push for an equaliser in the closing stages but it was all too predictable and Freiburg's lead was never in any serious danger.
- Niederlechner has now scored four times in three games against Schalke - two more than he's scored against any other Bundesliga team. Indeed, those four goals are Freiburg's sum total in their five games against the Royal Blues since earning promotion back to the Bundesliga in 2016. Freiburg have now celebrated 14 Bundesliga victories over Schalke, making the Royal Blues their favourite opponents.Although the top-scoring German last season with 15 goals, Petersen has not found the target in his last eight games against Schalke.Schalke are enduring their worst ever run under Domenico Tedesco, having lost their last five games.This is the first time in the last 17 games that Schalke have failed to score away from home.
Freiburg: Schwolow – Kübler (Stenzel 18'), Gulde, Heintz, Günter – Koch, Höfler - Terrazzino (Gondorf 75'), Sallai, Niederlechner (Lienhart 68') - Petersen (c)
Unused substitutes: Flekken, Höler, Waldschmidt, Kammerbauer
Absentees: Borrello (cruciate ligament), Kleindienst (ankle), Stanko (knee)
Coach: Christian Streich
Schalke: Fährmann (c) – Caligiuri, Sane, Nastasic, Mendyl – Harit, Serdar, Bentaleb, Konoplyanka (Schöpf 69') – Teuchert (Uth 53'), Embolo (Burgstaller 81')
Unused substitutes: Nübel, Mascarell, Rudy, Naldo
Absentees: McKennie (lower leg), Oczipka (groin), Skrzybski (muscle), Stambouli (ankle)
Coach: Domenico Tedesco