Football

Can Wolfsburg get out of its rut?

Glum faces: Wolfsburg will have to tighten its game if the players are to avoid such scenes after defeats.   | Photo Credit: AFP

Wolfsburg is Germany’s auto-making capital. Its football team is stuck in reverse gear.

Wolfsburg started the season with four consecutive wins to go to the top of the Bundesliga. After that, it slowed to a dead stop. It’s been seven games without a win since Sept. 14 in Germany and the Champions League, and new coach Mark van Bommel’s honeymoon period is well and truly over.

Losing to Salzburg 3-1 in the Champions League on Wednesday showed how far Wolfsburg has unraveled since beating the odds to qualify for the league last season under Oliver Glasner.

Glasner’s team was built on a bulletproof defence allowing a physically imposing but somewhat limited attack to grind out one-goal wins.

Wolfsburg still doesn’t score many goals — averaging one per game this season — but that once-imposing defence is leaking goals, with eight conceded in the last three games alone.

When Van Bommel was hired, his fearsome reputation from his time as a midfielder with Bayern Munich overshadowed any particular coaching achievement.

His next chance to turn things around comes on Saturday when Wolfsburg hosts Freiburg.


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Printable version | Dec 2, 2021 11:04:12 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/football/can-wolfsburg-get-out-of-its-rut/article37115781.ece

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