It was honors even at the Wohninvest Weserstadion on Saturday afternoon as Werder Bremen drew 1-1 against Schalke 04.
A tale of two halves, Schalke were much better to start, and they made the most of their advantage when Omar Mascarell slotted home in the 38th minute. Bremen responded well following the break, eventually equalizing in the 77th minute when Kevin Mohwald found the back of the net with a first time finish.
Neither team really deserved to win, so no one can really complain about the result.
Story of the match
Schalke could’ve easily taken the lead after only two minutes after a Bremen mistake at the back. Theodor Gebre Selassie underhit an attempted headed pass back to the goalkeeper, and the ball went right to Matthew Hoppe. He did well to go around the onrushing Jiri Pavlenka, but he couldn’t finish off the move from a tight angle.
The Royal Blues controlled much of the first half, and they deservedly took the lead in the 38th minute. A lovely cut back from Amine Harit picked out Omar Mascarel near the edge of the area, and his first time shot flew past all the bodies in the box and into the back of the net.
It was clear Bremen manager Florian Kohfeldt was fuming with his side, which was probably a big reason why he made three substitutions at halftime.
The changes did help early on as the Green-Whites created a bunch of chances soon after the break. Unfortunately for them, they couldn’t convert, as they either hit tame efforts at Ralf Fahrmann or missed the target altogether.
Bremen came very close in the 75th minute. A cross from Milot Rashica found fellow substitute Yuya Osako a few yards out, and it seemed his header was destined for goal. However, Fahrmann managed to extend his arm out to make the superb save.
The home side would not be denied again though, as they equalized moments later. A long ball in behind played Rashica through down the wing, and he was able to cut inside after a lucky bounce. He looked up and spotted the late run of Kevin Mohwald, and he was able to do the rest, slotting home to tie things up.
The Green-Whites thought they had grabbed the winner in the final moment of the contest as Maximilian Eggestein tapped in a low cross at the backpost, but a VAR review would take the goal off the board as Gebre Selassie was offside in the buildup.
That would prove to be the last bit of action as the referee blew for fulltime soon after.
This contest showed why neither team is near the top of the Bundesliga standings.
Bremen didn’t get going until halftime. Starting the game as if they were still asleep, the players out on the field showed no fight and no passion. They were bystanders to say the very least, and it was no surprise to see them behind going into the break.
Schalke, on the other hand, slowly fell apart as the contest went on. They started so well but they just started fading once the pressure was put on them. They dropped way too far back, allowing Bremen to put together attack after attack. The Royal Blues were lucky at the end of the day, as Selassie being offside was the only thing that stopped them from losing once again.
All in all, a draw was certainly the right result on the afternoon.
Man of the match - Omar Mascarell
No one in particular really stood out, but Schalke midfielder Omar Mascarell was arguably the best of an average bunch.
Scoring the opener after a smart run forward, his finish was simple and composed as the Spaniard practically passed the ball into the back of the net. He then made an impact on the other side of the pitch, as he had to drop back and help his team keep Bremen at bay.
Mascarell and company might be disappointed that they couldn’t keep hold of all three points, but they can still take some positives from the performance and result.