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Lankford Clinches Deserved Away Victory

1. FC Kaiserslautern vs. SVWW 0:1

| Pros

SV Wehen Wiesbaden take home all three points from their away game against 1. FC Kaiserslautern on the 22nd match day of the 3rd Liga. In a game played on difficult terrain, Kevin Lankford scored the 1:0 winning goal in the 69th minute of his début game.

After the draw against Viktoria Köln, SVWW manager, Rüdiger Rehm made only one change to his starting XI. Maurice Malone, who had arrived late to the team meeting, was absent from the Red and blacks’ squad. He was replaced by Paterson Chato in the starting team.

Despite the loss of top scorer Malone, the Red and Blacks immediately got stuck into an attacking game. With his strong header skills, Jakov Medic played second striker alongside Phillip Tietz and threw himself fully into every aerial duel. After only two minutes, a ball passed on by Medic landed at the feet of his striker partner, but Tietz was stopped by Avdo Spahic in the FCK goal.

Kaiserslautern also attempted to move forward quickly in attack but the Red and Blacks in defence left little space for their hosts. There were very few compelling moves on the Kaiserslautern side to begin with. On the other side, Tietz won the ball, kept his head and put a strong pass through to Lucas Brumme. However, Brumme was severely impeded when taking the shot and was also brought up short by Spahic (8’).

It took all of ten minutes for the quality of the “Red Devils” to shine through for the first time.  Anas Ouahim, who came on loan from SV Sandhausen during the week, initiated a Kaiserslautern counter attack by himself from the centre line, got the ball again from Marlon Ritter in the box, but Marvin Ajani was paying attention and cleared the ball just in front of the goal.

In a lively starting phase, both teams had good opportunities. Tietz, who was clearly enjoying the game, back-heeled the ball to Medic, but the Croatian’s shot with his instep sailed right over the crossbar (12’). Nine minutes later, Kevin Kraus cleared the ball again in front of Medic who was just about to shoot. The pass – naturally – had also come from Tietz.

Now with considerably more possession, SVWW at times controlled not only the ball but also their opponents. Kaiserslautern had almost no response to the patient build up and the determined challenges of their guests. The one thing missing, however, was the first goal. Kaiserslautern fought its way back into the game with physicality and got the SVWW attack increasingly under control. Despite this, the game was played mainly in the Kaiserslautern half of the pitch, which is why SVWW was always closer to scoring the goal to go into the lead.

After a strong half hour of play against this spirited team from the Palatinate, Medic took courage but Spahic managed to tip the shot from 16 metres over the crossbar (32’). Two minutes later, Prokop failed to connect properly with the ball on this difficult terrain – over the bar (34’). It was a defender who had the best opportunity in the whole match. After getting hold of the ball in his own half of the field, Florian Carstens muscled his way through the entire midfield, played a strong double pass with Tietz, and took a shot from five metres out. Once again, FCK owed their keeper who managed to keep the score to zero with a strong reflex reaction (37’).

The second half began the same as the first half had ended. SVWW began impressively, creating problems again for the FCK defence. Tietz and Medic constantly disrupted the FCK game and Brumme and Prokop continued their threat of scoring. But, still no-one managed to get past Avdo Spahic. Prokop tested the FCK keeper with a flick of the ball from 18 metres – not a problem for the keeper (50’). A header from Dennis Kempes from the corner by Ajani was also stopped by Spahic (59’).

 

There wasn’t much evidence of the Red Devils moving forward. SVWW captain, Sascha Mockenhaupt, and his defenders kept a tight ship, not letting the Palatinates come to a single shot on goal. Rehm now brought on some fresh legs in attack with Kevin Lankford.  New signing, Lankford, replaced Lucas Brumme 25 minutes before the end of the match. And, Lankford immediately celebrated his dream debut: The new player was hardly on the field four minutes when he got a pass from the centre – after a superb solo run by Tietz who left behind two FCK players in the box – and put it over the line to go into a well-deserved lead (69’).

FCK now suddenly reported back for duty with their first attacking move. Tim Rieder gave it a go with a powerful shot from 20 metres out but Tim Boss just about tipped the ball over the bar (71’). Nonetheless, once again a jolt went through the team from the Palatinate. Increased aggression and a different body language showed that the hosts had not yet given up completely.

But, SVWW also continued to be assertive and to play for that second goal. Lankford crossed to Medic, but the strong header by the Croatian hit the underside of the crossbar and bounced back onto the pitch in front of the goal line (77’). Shortly after that, Medic put a header into the net, but referee Florian Exner decided that the aerial duel was a striker foul – still 1:0 (80’).

On the other side of the pitch, the Red and Blacks threw themselves into each and every shot by the hosts, who were naturally trying to force the issue in the final phase of the game. But, the SVWW defenders and their two defensive midfielders swept away one attack after the other. The final shot was taken by Medic from about 30 metres in an attempt to get past Spahic who had come out of his goal. The ball landed just beside the goal (90’). And, the result remained a well-deserved away victory for SVWW.

 

SVWW: Boss – Ajani (85’ Kuhn), Mockenhaupt, Carstens, Kempe – Prokop (76’ Hollerbach), Chato, Lais, Brumme (66’ Lankford) – Medic, Tietz (85’ Guthörl)

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