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BOYS IN BROWN GO DOWN 2-0 AT HEIDENHEIM

FC St. Pauli slipped to a 2-0 defeat at FC Heidenheim on Saturday. In front of 13,000 spectators at the Voith Arena, Marc Schnatterer gave the home side the lead on 20 minutes. The Boys in Brown battled to turn the game round after the interval but were unable to find an equaliser. With nine minutes left, Schnatterer added a second with a disputed penalty.

Head coach Ewald Lienen made two changes to the side that lost 1-0 against Fortuna Düsseldorf last time out, Joel Keller and Richard Neudecker coming in for Waldemar Sobota and Marc Hornschuh. This double switch resulted in several positional changes. Keller slotted in at left-back, with Neudecker starting in holding midfield. Daniel Buballa patrolled the left flank, while Vegar Hedenstad returned to right-back.

With the game just two minutes old, Hedenstad went into a challenge with Heidenheim's Marc Schnatterer. Referee Benjamin Cortus gave the home side the advantage and Arne Feick whipped a dangerous cross into the box, where the ball flew past friend and foe alike. The hosts continued to play with confidence, though former St. Pauli favourite John Verhoek missed the target by quite some distance on seven minutes. Four minutes later Denis Thomalla popped up unmarked in front of Robin Himmelmann and the keeper produced an outstanding save with his foot before Lasse Sobiech finally cleared the danger.

The game had still not reached the quarter-hour mark when Lienen was forced to make his first change after Christopher Buchtmann hobbled off following a collision with Tim Skarke. He was replaced by Dennis Rosin. Sixty seconds later Schnatterer knocked a free-kick into the area from the right for Feick to head towards goal. Fortunately, he failed to connect properly with the ball and the danger was gone. Heidenheim maintained the pressure and eventually took the lead on 20 when Schnatterer ran onto Verhoek's lay-off and rifled a shot into the bottom left corner from just outside the box.

Although Lienen's side enjoyed more of the possession after the goal, they did not represent a threat until the 29th minute. Hedenstad dispatched a free-kick towards the head of Lasse Sobiech, but the home rearguard joined forces to clear the ball for a corner. Almost immediately, Neudecker created some space for himself in midfield and knocked the ball to Hedenstad on the left. His cross took a slight deflection, however, and flew straight to Kevin Müller in the Heidenheim goal.

A spell of scrappy play followed but the game burst into life again just before the break when Himmelmann had to defuse powerful shots from Schnatterer on 43 and Skarke in the first minute of time added on. In between those efforts, Rosin almost conjured up an equaliser for the Boys in Brown. The youngster left three defenders standing, only to see his shot blocked by a fourth with the alarm bells ringing in the home defence. A St. Pauli corner on the stroke of half-time came to nothing and so the two sides went in at the break with the score 1-0 to the hosts.

Ewald Lienen's men attempted to get the ball forward more quickly after the interval, while the home side sought to keep control of the proceedings. With 53 minutes gone, Hedenstad curled a free-kick into the danger area, where Aziz Bouhaddouz directed a header wide of the goal. Neudecker then dragged an effort off target from distance.

Lienen made a second substitution on the hour, bringing on Cenk Sahin for Ryo Miyaichi. With Heidenheim content to protect their slender advantage and wait for a chance to break, the Boys in Brown upped the pace another notch. The St. Pauli boss made his third and final change on 69 with the introduction of a second striker in Marvin Ducksch for Daniel Buballa.

In the closing stages the Boys in Brown threw everything forward and threatened again on 73 when a fine move involving Hedenstad and Rosin ended with a cross to the near post from the corner of the box. Bouhaddouz met it with a diving header, only to see the ball trundle past the far post. In the 77th minute Sahin spotted Rosin's darting run into the area. The latter hit the lofted ball first time on the volley but unfortunately didn't get enough power on it, allowing Müller to gather.

Ten minutes from time confusion reigned in the St. Pauli penalty box when the ball came in, and referee Cortus suddenly pointed to the spot for an alleged tug on Verhoek's shirt by Sören Gonther – a very harsh decision. Schnatterer stepped up and left Himmelmann no chance. With that the game was over and the Boys in Brown were again left empty-handed.

 

FC Heidenheim

Müller – Strauss, Beermann, Wittek (Theuerkauf 46'), Feick – Griesbeck, Titsch-Rivero, Skarke (Halloran 85'), Schnatterer – Thomalla (Morabit 64'), Verhoek

Coach: Frank Schmidt

 

FC St. Pauli

Himmelmann – Hedenstad, Gonther, Sobiech, Keller – Neudecker, Nehrig, Miyaichi (Sahin 60'), Buchtmann (Rosin 13'), Buballa (Ducksch 69') – Bouhaddouz

Coach: Ewald Lienen

 

Goals: 1-0 Schnatterer (20'), 2-0 Schnatterer (pen. 81')

Yellow card: Bouhaddouz

Referee: Benjamin Cortus (Röthenbach a. d. Pegnitz)

Attendance: 13,000

 

Photo: Witters

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