Jena watertight at the back
Having bounced back from a defeat to Freiburg in smart fashion with a surprise mid-week win over VfL Wolfsburg, Potsdam were once again looking to add another win to their glittering start to the season.
Bossing the ball from the off, Potsdam moved the ball around with ease but struggled for a meaningful last ball against a well regimented Jena defence, Kathrin Längert nervously watching Svenja Huth’s tenth minute flicked header curl onto the roof of her net. The keeper alert but well covered by her outfielders.
Linking up well across the pitch, the hosts really should have been a goal to the good before the twentieth minute, Huth raced onto a long ball over the top, drawing Längert out her layoff to Sarah Zadrazil was just too short for the Austrian international. With Jana Sedláčková stuck to Zadrazil like glue there was little the attacker could do as Sedláčková knocked the ball clear.
Eseosa Aigbogun’s hard work almost paying dividends in the dying moments of the half, keeping the ball alive at the by-line, her neat pass met by Zadrazil but the attacker could only volley against the side-netting, Längert with the angle covered anyhow.
Like Russian nesting dolls, every time Potsdam took one off of the top to make more ground on goal they’d just find another just behind and even harder to remove.
Rachel Melhado everywhere in defence for the visitors, refusing to let anyone past, her partnership with Sedláčková key to keeping the hosts out for the first-half. Whilst the first-half was an enjoyable watch – and reminder of Potsdam’s re-emergence in the league – there was little goalmouth action.
Huth hits home
After having done well to chase and charge down in the first-half Huth was back to the same at the start of the second, nipping the ball away from the defence the striker pulled the keeper out before slotting past her and into the far corner.
But that was all the home side had seen of the ball after the break, Jena with a real fire about themselves, Susanne Utes’s deflected shot leaving Lisa Schmitz unsure as it looped onto the top of her net.
But a break from the resulting corner gave the home side a chance to double their lead, Elise Kellond-Knight’s whipped corner delivery a perfect demonstration of putting the ball “into an area”, with three players rising to win the ball Längert pulled off a superb diving save what would have gone down as an own goal.
Having looked more open at the back, Jena did well to pack the box as Felicitas Rauch squared the ball for Aigbogun, the ball pinged between the attacker and two defenders, with Längert hastily getting back into position.
Falling onto the damp turf, Aigbogun could only fire over on the stretch, launching the ball between the two defenders. With less at the back, Jena had looked far more dangerous in the second-half, not just getting players forward but using the width, keen to get around the host’s narrow defence.
But as it had been in the first-half so was it in the second as Turbine won the ball and held on to it, forcing the visitors to chase shadows, their counters holding less and less weight as the game wore on.
All change at Jena
The win is another positive one for Potsdam who stay top, although Matthias Rudolph will be desperate for his side to finish games off sooner rather than later, 1-0’s easy to bread nerves.
Having only just announced the departure of Christian Franz-Pohlmann, the players and interim coach, Steffen Beck can be happy with their performance, knowing if they keep on at the level they’re at they’re certain to add more wins in the coming weeks.