We Went There: Leverkusen fights for late draw against Hannover

Bayer Leverkusen had the advantage for so much of the match Saturday, but could not capitalize on their chances and only managed to save one point in a grueling MatchDay 8 tilt against Hannover 96.

Leverkusen got an early penalty that was saved by the keeper, then Hannover’s Florent Muslija smashed a free kick past Lukas Hradecky. Leverkusen’s Lars Bender responded with a goal at the other end about 10 minutes later. Hannover put away another early in the second half, leading to concerns from the home faithful. The man who scored Hannover’s second goal, Felipe, saw his second yellow for a handball just three minutes later, giving Leverkusen a man advantage for the remaining half hour.

Leverkusen kept the ball in the attacking half for much of the rest of the game, but their efforts kept coming up short. Finally, Karim Bellarabi curved a shot that hit off the far post and in, salvaging a point at last in a 2-2 draw.

Line-ups

Leverkusen: Hradecky – Weiser (Bellarabi 75’), Tah, S. Bender, Wendell – L. Bender (c), Kohr (Kiese Thelin 64’) – Brandt, Havertz, Volland (Bailey 75’) – Alario
Unused subs: Özcan, Dragovic, Jedvaj, Schreck
Absentees: Aranguiz (knee), Baumgartlinger (ankle), Pohjanpalo (ankle), Retsos (fitness)
Coach: Heiko Herrlich

Hannover: Esser – Elez, Anton (c), Felipe – Haraguchi, Schwegler (Bakalorz 81′), Walace, Albornoz – Muslija (Ostrzolek 68’) – Wood (Wimmer 61’), Füllkrug
Unused subs: Tschauner, Asano, Fossum, Weydandt
Absentees: Hübers, Maina, Prib (all knee)
Coach: Andre Breitenreiter

Here are exclusive shots from the BayArena by @Kai_Dambach

The traveling Hannover 96 fans showed their disdain for Hannover 96 President Martin Kind and Deputy Chairman Uwe Krause. The sign reads: Kind has to go, Krause as well.

 

Bayer Leverkusen Head Coach Heiko Herrlich (right) is pumped while talking with an assistant.

 

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Hannover 96 Head Coach Andre Breitenreiter is cool and collected before the match.

 

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Some kids get a lucky high five from a Leverkusen player before the match.

 

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Hannover 96’s Bobby Wood loses the ball against Jonathan Tah early in the game.

 

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Hannover’s Florent Muslija already knows his first half free kick is going in.

 

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Muslija gets mobbed by his teammates after his stunner gives Hannover the early lead.

 

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Hannover’s Niclas Fullkrug’s header finds the back of the net, but was waved off.

 

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Leverkusen’s Julian Brandt’s header sails just wide to start the second.

 

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Dominik Kohr brings the ball down inside the box in the second half.

 

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Kohr’s shot gets blocked by Hannover’s Michael Esser.

 

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Leverkusen’s Wendell tried cross after cross to no avail in the second half.

 

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Things got testy towards the end of the game. There were six yellow cards (including one yellow-red) in the game, five for Hannover.

 

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Leverkusen’s Karim Bellarabi pushed his team on after tying the game late.

 

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Hannover’s Esser knocks on the post that did not forgive him on the Bellarabi goal.

 

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Leverkusen’s Lucas Alario gets comforted after Leverkusen couldn’t convert late chances into three points.

 

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An ultras leader talks with Sven Bender after the game.

 

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It was tense in front of the ultras after the match, as they booed the team off the pitch. But the players who came to talk to the ultras after the game managed to ease tensions and turned jeers into cheers after a few minutes.

 

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