Cologne ruing bad luck after another Bundesliga defeat


BERLIN (AP) — Cologne’s new mascot, a handsome goat named Hennes IX, has not brought good luck to the promoted German side so far.

Cologne’s early season enthusiasm has disappeared after its fifth loss in six Bundesliga games. Having returned after a season in the second division, it is now facing the prospect of going right back to the lower tier.

New coach Achim Beierlorzer was supposed to lead the side to midtable stability and even perhaps a European qualification place, but the 51-year-old faces a huge challenge to turn his team’s fortune around after Sunday’s 4-0 loss at home to Hertha Berlin.

After a tough series of games against the likes of Bayern Munich, Borussia Mönchengladbach and Borussia Dortmund, Cologne fans had been hopeful of the first win of the season against Hertha, which only ended its poor start to the season with a win over last-place Paderborn the week before.

It was the Cologne’s third home game of the season, but a series of setbacks soon spoiled the party atmosphere.

Midfielder Dominick Drexler got injured in the sixth minute, then Javairo Dilrosun scored for the visitors and defender Jorge Meré was sent off before the break after an intervention by video review.

“Everything that could go wrong, went wrong,” goalkeeper Timo Horn said. “Drexler injured himself with his first touch, we defended badly before the first goal, and it doesn’t get any easier when you’re chasing a game with a player less.”

Hertha substitute Vedad Ibisevic came on in the second half and promptly scored two goals before Belgian defender Dedryck Boyata completed the rout.

“It was actually a good game,” Cologne sporting director Armin Veh said of what had been an encouraging performance before Dilrosun scored in the 23rd. “We were too sloppy for the goals.”

Veh appeared resigned to a relegation battle with fellow promoted sides Paderborn and Union Berlin.

“We know we’re in a fight for survival,” said Veh, adding he was convinced “we will do better and get our points.”

Cologne has three points from its win in Freiburg. It has the league’s worst attack with four goals scored.

Its next game is Saturday at Schalke, which is on a four-game winning streak and ended former leader Leipzig’s unbeaten start to the season on Saturday.

WOMEN’S BUNDESLIGA

League leader Wolfsburg displayed its might by crushing Jena 8-1 at home in the women’s Bundesliga on Sunday.

Pernille Harder scored a hat trick in Wolfsburg’s rout as the defending league and cup champions maintained their perfect start to the season in impressive fashion. Wolfsburg has scored 21 goals and conceded two in five wins from five games.

Bayern Munich, Hoffenheim and Frankfurt kept pace with wins on Sunday.

Lina Magull scored twice in Bayern’s 4-0 win at home over bottom side Duisburg, which has lost all of its games.

The 23-year-old Tabea Waßmuth scored four goals in Hoffenheim’s 5-1 win at Freiburg. Frankfurt defeated visiting Cologne 1-0.

Source: Fox Sports

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