It’s a second straight defeat for Werder Bremen as the Green-Whites were beaten 2-1 by Stuttgart on Sunday afternoon at the Wohninvest Weserstadion.
An ugly game throughout, a penalty converted by Silas Wamangituka gave Stuttgart the lead early on before a mistake at the back allowed Wamangituka to grab his second and put the game to bed. Davie Selke headed home late to halve the difference, but it was just not enough as Bremen deservedly lost.
Story of the match
The home side created the opening chance of the contest after only five minutes, and they really should have taken the lead. A clever dummy from Josh Sargent somehow put Yuya Osako through, but he could only hit his shot over the crossbar.
After a back-and-forth first half hour, it was Stuttgart who opened the scoring on the afternoon. A penalty was called when Wataru Endo was taken down in the area by Tahith Chong, which might have been a harsh call considering the fact that the player was already heading to ground before the contact came. Nonetheless, Silas Wamangituka stepped up and converted the resulting spot kick.
They used that momentum to push forward before the break, but they just couldn’t make the most of their dominant spell as the first half came to a close.
The contest developed a very distinct pattern, as Bremen controlled possession and hit crosses into the area while Stuttgart sat back and hit on the counter. Philipp Forster danced past a few defenders before hitting a low shot from the edge of the area, but his effort was saved relatively easily by Jiri Pavlenka.
Stuttgart would seal the three points in stoppage time, as a miscommunication from Pavlenka and Omer Toprak allowed Wamangituka to steal the ball and kick it into an empty net. It was a classless moment from the attacker, though, as he waited for the goalkeeper to come back before launching a shot from the goal line.
Bremen did grab a late consolation goal through Davie Selke, but it was ultimately too little too late for the home side who have now lost two straight.
Fair play to Stuttgart for doing enough to win on the afternoon, but their job was made way too easy by Bremen, who completely fell flat.
The worst showing of the season so far, it all seemed so promising for the home side. They were moving the ball well early on, and they should have taken the lead if not for a woeful shot attempt by Yuya Osako.
However, Bremen just lost the plot after that moment. They looked misguided going forward, messing up simple passes and dribbling straight into opposing defenders. Things weren’t much better at the back, as Stuttgart were given too much space to operate on several occasions, and the late mistake from Toprak sealed the teams fate.
Things don’t get any easier, as Bremen go on the road to RB Leipzig before hosting Borussia Dortmund in the next game. They need to improve, and they need to improve quickly if they want to avoid another relegation scrap this campaign.
Man of the match - Wataru Endo
The man of the match should be Silas Wamangituka after his two goals led Stuttgart to victory, but his moment of pure disrespect at the end of the contest should not be rewarded. It very easily could have started a brawl, and he’ll be lucky to escape some sort of internal punishment from the club, whether it be a fine or limited play time next game.
Wataru Endo will get the nod as a result, as the midfielder won the penalty that led to the first goal before playing a key part in securing the three points. Getting the job done on both sides of the ball, he knew when to push forward and when to drop back.
A constant presence in the lineup, performances like these have been a key reason why Stuttgart have done so well this season. If Endo and company can keep the good times rolling, then there’s plenty of reasons to believe they could make a genuine push for Europa League qualification.