0-1, Boland 71'.
SV Sandhausen 0-1 Eintracht Braunschweig: Boland gives Lions three vital points
Image credit: Bundesliga.de

SV Sandhausen 0-1 Eintracht Braunschweig: Boland gives Lions three vital points

Lieberknecht's men are finally back on track, although it was far from easy.

Jonathan Walsh
SV Sandhausen(4-2-3-1) Knaller; Klingmann, Gordon, Kister (Knipping 28'), Roßbach; Kulovits (Lukasik 73'), Linsmayer; Pledl, Höler, Derstroff (Sakuta-Pasu 65'); Wooten.
Eintracht Braunschweig(4-4-2) Fejzic; Ofosu-Ayeh, Decarli, Valsvik, Reichel; Zuck (Hochscheidt 82'), Moll (Matuschyk 88'), Boland, Hernandez; Nyman, Kumbela (Abdullahi 65').
REFEREESören Storks (Velen). Booked: Höler (70'), Moll (79')

Mirko Boland's header proved to be the crucial and only goal of the game as Eintracht Braunschweig got their first win in six games with a 1-0 victory over SV Sandhausen.

Team news

Following on from their sorry showing against 1. FC Kaiserslautern last weekend, Kenan Kocak made three alterations from the side that started the game. Tim Kister, Stefan Kulovits and Julian Derstroff were all restored to the starting line-up in place of Tim Knipping, Daniel Lukasik and Manuel Stiefler.

Torsten Lieberknecht was feeling the heat as a 1-1 draw with Erzgebirge Aue meant Braunschweig's winless run had trundled onto five games. In a bid to change things around Marcel Correia, Nik Omladic and Julius Biada were replaced by Hendrick Zuck, Mirko Boland and Domi Kumbela.

Fejzic keeps Braunschweig level

It was a full-blooded start from both sides in Sandhausen, yet one which failed to create any goalscoring opportunities. The closest either side came was from a penetrating run by Zuck, although Kumbela took far too long with the finish and the chance was quickly gone. At the other end, Thomas Pledl's free-kick didn't trouble Jasmin Fejzic.

The hosts continued to make all the running in the first half as Braunschweig's drop in form was showing no sign of ending. First, Lucas Höler fired over was an impressive volley before Gustav Valsvik kept out Pledl. The latter was again denied by Fejzic before the Bosnian stuck out an arm to somehow deny Derstroff's close-range header.

Braunschweig eventually responded with some attacking intent of their own, although that was never much more than some hopeful crosses. When they finally did get the ball down, they looked more dangerous and Zuck forced a fine save from Marco Knaller to keep the scores level. That would also be the final chance of a goalless, luckless half.

Boland heads home

The half began with more verve than that of the first. Zuck's cross was nodded wide by Christoffer Nyman before Boland fired just wide. Sandhausen were quick to respond and Andrew Wooten smashed a volley narrowly past the upright after chasing down what looked to be a completely lost cause.

Finally the breakthrough came in the 71st minute. Onel Hernandez's free-kick was whipped into the area where it was met by Saulo Decarli. Braunschweig's luck seemed out when he rattled the post but Boland reacted quickly to turn the ball into an open net. The hardy travelling stand of visiting fans were understandably delighted.

Pledl was again denied by Fejzic's top-notch keeping, somehow clawing the midfielder's free-kick out of the top corner at the crucial moment. It was frantic at the finish as Jan Hochscheidt shot narrowly wide less than a minute after coming on, with a kind deflection falling his way before side-footing past the post.

The Lions had to fight off a late onslaught from Sandhausen, as the Braunschweig defence was tested to the maximum. Richie Sakuta-Pasu and Höler had late chances but Ofosu-Ayeh and his team-mates somehow held on to remain just a point behind Union in fourth. Sandhausen, on the other hand, stay seventh.