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HIGHEST HOME WIN IN FOUR YEARS AS BOYS IN BROWN OVERWHELM WÜRZBURG

FC St. Pauli put four past Kickers Würzburg on Saturday afternoon to register their fourth three-point haul in succession. Omar Marmoush gave a dominant Schultz XI an early lead before two goals in four minutes from Rico Benatelli and Leart Paqarada stretched the advantage to three. Daniel-Kofi Kyereh added a fourth just after the break and a number of chances to increase the margin of victory went begging. Nevertheless, the Boys in Brown were left to celebrate their biggest home win in more than four years.

Head coach Timo Schultz made two adjustments to his side following the impressive 3-1 win at Aue last time out. James Lawrence slotted into central defence for Adam Dźwigała, while Maximilian Dittgen replaced Guido Burgstaller. The Austrian striker, who leads the internal scoring chart with nine goals this term, was absent for personal reasons. Würzburg coach Ralf Santelli made five changes to the team that drew 1-1 against Nürnberg, including Fabian Giefer for the injured first-choice goalkeeper Hendrik Bonmann.

The game kicked off in pleasant conditions (bright sunshine and 13 °C) and it was the Boys in Brown who fashioned the opening chances. With two minutes gone, Finn Ole Becker threaded a pass through to Omar Marmoush, whose shot on the turn was decisively blocked by Tobias Kraulich. Just two minutes later, Marmoush picked up the ball on the halfway line after Becker had won possession and surged through the middle towards the Würzburg goal. His shot from 18 metres took a wicked deflection off Kraulich and looped over Fabien Giefer into the net.

Buoyed by the early lead, the Boys in Brown dictated the opening stages, leaving the visitors pinned back in their own half. Accordingly, it came as no surprise when they doubled their advantage from a corner on 18 minutes. Rodrigo Zalazar pulled the trigger from the edge of the box, but his shot took a deflection and landed at the feet of Philipp Ziereis, who was denied in fine style by Giefer. Rico Benatelli was first to the rebound, however, and slid the ball into the empty net from close range. And there was more to come. Becker knocked a ball square to Leart Paqarada in a central position and the left-back set himself before powering a drive past the despairing dive of Giefer into the left-hand corner from 25 metres. A wonderful strike!

Paqarada and Co. continued to dominate but were unable to create chances with the same regularity. Würzburg had been anonymous from the off and it was not until the 36th minute that they fashioned their first opportunity, David Kopacz firing well over from 15 metres after the Boys in Brown had failed to clear their lines. That was the final action of note and the Schultz XI were well worth their three-goal lead at the half.

As in the reverse fixture, Rico Benatelli got on the scoresheet against Würzburg, reacting first to slide the ball over the line in the 18th minute.

As in the reverse fixture, Rico Benatelli got on the scoresheet against Würzburg, reacting first to slide the ball over the line in the 18th minute.

Timo Schultz had no reason to change anything for the second half, of course, but Ralf Santelli opted to make three adjustments, Mitja Lotrić, Dominic Baumann and Rajiv van la Parra entering the fray for Martin Hašek, Marvin Pieringer and David Kopacz. The pattern of the game remained the same, however, with the Boys in Brown controlling the play and finding the net again following a corner. Paqarada dispatched a cross from the left to the unmarked Kyereh, who met it first time on the volley and smashed the ball past Giefer. The Würzburg keeper got a hand to the shot but was unable to keep it out.

Perhaps with one eye on the next two games at Düsseldorf and at home to Fürth, Schultz made a triple substitution on 56, Tore Reginiussen, Christian Viet and Lukas Daschner replacing James Lawrence, Rodrigo Zalazar and Omar Marmoush. That did nothing to stop the flow of attacks from his team, who had three opportunities to add a fifth goal in as many minutes. First, Daschner curled a shot a metre wide of the post from the inside-left channel, and then Dittgen rifled a shot against the stanchion. Moments later, Kyereh failed to make a proper connection, his effort from the edge of the box going wide of the other post. Soon after that, Daschner directed a header narrowly wide of the upright.

As in the first period, the Boys in Brown gave absolutely nothing away at the back, leaving Dejan Stojanović with virtually nothing to do between the posts. With the result no longer in doubt, Schultz withdrew Becker and Kyereh to give Jannes Wieckhoff and Simon Makienok a runout. Thereafter, the game petered to a close. A hugely impressive performance by the Boys in Brown, who were well worth the win, their highest since the 5-0 defeat of Karlsruhe on 27 February 2017.

FC St. Pauli

Stojanović - Zander, Ziereis, Lawrence (Reginiussen 56'), Paqarada - Becker (Wieckhoff 72'), Benatelli, Zalazar (Viet 56'), Kyereh (Makienok 77') - Marmoush (Daschner 56'), Dittgen

Head coach: Timo Schultz

 

Kickers Würzburg

Giefer – Ronstadt (Feick 82'), Strohdiek, Kraulich, Feltscher – Hägele, Dietz, Hašek (Lotrić 46') – Munsy (Nikolov 62'), Kopacz (Van la Parra 46') – Pieringer (Baumann 46')

Head coach: Ralf Santelli

 

Goals: 1-0 Marmoush (4'), 2-0 Benatelli (18'), 3-0 Paqarada (22'), 4-0 Kyereh (50')

Yellow cards: Dittgen

Referee: Christian Dingert (Gries)

 

Photos: Witters

 

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