Europa League madness in Leverkusen: Bayer wins the group.
Bayer Leverkusen had everything in their own hands against Celtic Glasgow. The Werkself took the lead early on, but suddenly gave up the game. Then came a wild final phase.
Bayer Leverkusen won Group G in the Europa League. The team around national player Florian Wirtz won a high-scoring game against Celtic Glasgow 3-2 and is thus unassailable first. This means that the Werkself have made it to the round of 16 and bypassed the second round. Robert Andrich was the match winner. The midfielder scored twice against the Scots. The third goal was scored by Moussa Diaby.
The Scots did not hide, spurred on by almost 2000 enormously loud fans, and looked for their chance of progressing and even winning the group. Bayer, who had started with a rump team – there were only five field players on the bench instead of the permitted ten outfield players – soon gained security through ball relay.
Two players in particular took charge of the game: full-back Jeremie Frimpong, who moved from Celtic to Leverkusen in January, who seemed to be spurred on by the whistles of the Glasgow fans. Andrich, who started the first shot (9th), just missed with his head after the corner due (10th) and hit after the next from Florian Wirtz (16th).
After that, Bayer let loose in front of 19,830 spectators. The hard-working Scots actually lacked class and speed to get dangerously in front of the Leverkusen goal. So a penalty had to serve: Bayer goalkeeper Lukas Hradecky had knocked over striker Kyogo Furuhashi after a cross. Referee Anatasios Sidiropoulos initially allowed the game to continue, but pointed to the point after the video assistant intervened. Juranovic chipped into the goal in Panenka style (40th).
The fact that Bayer did not take a lead into the dressing room was due to a curious situation: First Diaby hit the right post, followed by Wirtz the left (44th). After the break, Amine Adli also stumbled into the lead (54th).
They scored the Scots when, of all people, Frimpong slipped away while attempting to clear things up against his ex-team. Jota’s goal (56th) resulted from Celtic’s second shot on goal.
In the closing stages, Bayer rewarded themselves thanks to the hits from the outstanding Andrich (82nd) and Diaby (87th).