Captain Gonzalo Castro returned to the starting line-up following injury, while Marc Oliver Kempf was also back in the side after recovering from a cold, with Erik Thommy and Atakan Karazor dropping to the bench.
|30th minute||VfB have 60 per cent of possession against a defensively compact Köln side, but are unable to find any gaps in the home team’s rearguard.|
|45th minute||Konstantinos Mavropanos heads over from Castro’s corner just before the break, leaving the game goalless at half-time.|
|49th minute||Sosa whips in a free-kick from the left and Kalajdzic’s glancing header flies in to break the deadlock. It’s the Austrian’s 10th goal of the season, with five coming in the last four games. Sosa has provided the assist for three of them.|
|77th minute||Köln’s Salih Özcan hits the bar from 20 yards out and VfB breathe a sigh of relief.|
|90th minute +4||The final whistle blows and Stuttgart take all three points back home.|
Borna’s crosses are just great. He whips them in with pace and spin, so I just had to get my head on it. I’m happy that things are getting better and better with each game we play. Going 1-0 up was the turning point for us.
VfB earned a deserved victory in Cologne, having been the more active team throughout the majority of the match against a defensive-minded home side. Chances were at a premium in the first half, making Kalajdzic’s goal early in the second period all the more important as Pellegrino Matarazzo’s men collected maximum points. Although Köln pushed for an equaliser in the closing stages and went close when Özcan hit the woodwork, overall VfB were good value for the win.