Bundesliga 2018/19: Matchday 1 Recap
The 56th Bundesliga season started off in a fascinating way as relegation playoff winner Wolfsburg gets the upper hand on Schalke 04 while Bayern and Dortmund kick off their campaigns with a win each.
Defending champions Bayern Munich took off with a shaky win against Hoffenheim while Borussia Dortmund drilled four goals into the net of RB Leipzig to claim their first win of the season. Meanwhile, things weren’t going as well for Schalke 04 and Bayer Leverkusen, both of whom suffered disappointing defeats over Wolfsburg and Gladbach respectively.
Bayern Munich encountered a tough Julian Nagelsmann’s Hoffenheim squad in their opening match. While the final score says otherwise, it’s safe to say that last year’s champions had a hard time playing last season’s third placers.
On the other hand, Hoffenheim looked threatening throughout the game despite the early goal from Thomas Muller. The team defended well for the rest of the half before taking advantage of an opportunity caused by lack of defensive concentration by the home side to equalize in the 57th minute.
New head coach Niko Kovac ended his drought against Hoffenheim after recording three draws and two defeats in the last five matches prior to the opening week. But, with a stronger side, he was expected to win his first game with Bayern.
A couple of errors from the Hoffenheim side saw TSG hand over two quick goals. Nevertheless, it was refreshing to see for non-Bayern fans that their dominance in German football is slowly declining. If the Bavarians put their guard down, we could see a more competitive title race this season.
Week 1 highlights
Monchengladbach, in the meantime, pulls off an upset by beating Bayer Leverkusen 2-0. They have has Jonas Hofmann to thank after the forward was presented with opportunities on goal, including five shots on goal and one converted penalty. The game finished 2-0 at the Borussia Park.
In the earlier matches, Wolfsburg claimed the spotlight by beating last season’s runner-up Schalke 04. New signing Daniel Ginczek and Wout Weghorst seized all attacking opportunities presented to them, while the former secured a goal in the final minutes of the match to claim all three points for the Wolves.
Eintracht Frankfurt recorded a 2-0 win over SC Freiburg, Nürnberg had to settle with a 1-0 loss facing Hertha BSC, while recently-promoted club Fortuna Dusseldorf impressed many despite a 2-1 defeat against FC Augsburg.
Werder Bremen and Hannover 96 recorded the only draw of Matchday 1 as both sides had to settle with a stalemate after failing to find the back of the net.
Ultimately, it was Borussia Dortmund that recorded the highest scoring match of the opening week. The black and yellows were unstoppable in their game against RB Leipzig. After conceding the first goal, the hosts countered in an assertive fashion. They equalized in the 21st minute, while new signing Axel Witsel showcased his skills after scoring an acrobatic goal to end the first half 3-1. The match finished 4-1.
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