FC St Pauli – SpVgg Greuther Fürth review

St Pauli sends Fürth closer to the 3rd league almost without effort

Kauczinski offered several surprises in his starting lineup, but also regarding the tactical positioning, sending his team in a 4-4-2 system, with a diamond in midfield. Sobiech started in central defense, Ziereis moved right instead of Park and Dudziak started as left back. Buballa had to settle only with a substitute role. The biggest surprise was the midfield line. Nehrig played in front of the defense, Kalla half right, Neudecker half left and Buchtmann on the 10. Diamantakos and Möller Daehli formed the attacking duo.

Fürth played in the expected 4-1-4-1 formation and positioning, so Damir Buric had no surprises for his opponent.

The home team started in attack, very determined and aggressive, trying high speed attacks. All offensive actions were built around Buchtmann, St Pauli’s playmaker dictating the tempo of the game. The hosts took the lead only seven minutes into the game, after a series of three standard situations around the opposite penalty box. Fürth couldn’t increase the rhythm, Gjasula and Green were immediately put under pressure, couldn’t find the right options, so the guests relied again and again on long balls, which were easily lost. St Pauli stayed focused and tried fast attacks after regaining possession. This way they were close to make it 2-0, with Möller Daehli moving on the right wing to receive the ball and quickly pass it to Buchtmann in a central position, unmarked.

Bitter news for the hosts after 30 minutes, as Buchtmann was replaced by Flum due to injury. Kauczinski also changed the system of his team in a 4-2-3-1. Möller Daehli had more freedom between the lines, proved to be very agile and hard to dispossess, but also inefficient. Neudecker started to make more forward runs, encouraged by the poor defensive work from Green and Gjasula, so Gugganig was often easily outplayed. The game was dominated by a lot of aggressive duels, most important won by the hosts, who adopted a more cautious approach. They defended far from their own goal and waited for the opposition mistakes, in order to hit on the break. Kalla won several important midfield duels, while Nehrig calmed things down and found solutions to link the defense with the midfield. After one quick attack, with Neudecker insisting on a ball and creating a numerical advantage on the right wing, St Pauli scored for 2-0. Fürth goalkeeper also played an important role in that scene, as he wrongly deflected the ball on Flum’s head.

The guests struggled, but received some unexpected help from Avevor. The central defender made two big mistakes, which led to the only scoring chances the guests recorded in the first half. Hilbert tried several forward runs on the right side, cleared by Ernst’s movement inside, but he was slow and often found himself in a 1v2 situation. When he managed to cross the ball into the box, it was easy prey for Sobiech. Fürth couldn’t find solutions to outplay St Pauli’s midfielders, as the hosts were rearranged in a very efficient 4-4-1-1 system against the ball. The expected guests’ 3v2 advantage in midfield was nonexistent, as they lacked pace and precision of the vertical passes.

Damir Buric changed at half time with Reese instead of pale Gjasula and the first thought was that Fürth would play with two strikers. But it was not the case, Reese played on the right wing, Ernst moved in Gjasula’s central position. So, no tactical change. Fürth wanted to put more pressure on the hosts, but acted slow, without ideas and misplaced offensive passes. They tried some movement upfront, but unsynchronized with the passes. Out of nowhere, the guests manage a superb action, with space created by Dursun for Green’s forward movement at the edge of the area, free in a central position, but his shot was no trouble for Himmelmann. Instead of being a wakeup call for Fürth, it was St Pauli who hit again, a few minutes later. They managed to get the ball out of a congested area in midfield, on the left side, Flum sent a brilliant pass to Diamantakos and St Pauli was in a 3v3 counter attack. Neudecker finished the action with a powerful shot under the crossbar. It was game over for Damir Buric’s team after only one hour played.

The last thirty minutes were an easy game for St Pauli, with a lot of space for counter attack, but the best decision was usually not found and there were only two good chances to increase the lead. On the other side, Fürth lacked aggressiveness and motivation, all attacks ended 25-30m in front of the target and almost all vertical passes in the opposite half were lost.

The guest’s appearance was extremely poor and alarming for the last two rounds, while St Pauli made a small step forward, but still needs points to save themselves.

Key scenes:

7th min: Left corner kick for St Pauli. Buchtmann crosses at the first post, Sobiech extends it to Diamantakos, who escapes from Ernst’s superficial marking and shoots from 6m into the back of the net – 1-0.


15th min: Nehrig regains possession close to the own goal line on the right side, advances without being attacked and sends a vertical pass to Möller Daehli, on the right wing. The Norwegian enables the turbo mode, but Maloca appears in front of him, blocking the forward run. Buchtmann is a passing option in front of the penalty area, unmarked. Gjasula is easily dribbled, Caligiuri is too late to put pressure on him, but the shot goes in Burchert’s arms.

18th min: St Pauli easily conquers the ball after a long pass, but Avevor pats and loses possession against Ernst. Fürth’s winger restarts the attack and advances into the box. Nehrig takes Avevor’s position in this scene and leaves the zone in front of the defense unguarded. Dursun attacks that free space, Ernst’s pass goes there, but the striker’s shot goes wide.

31st min: The next gift from Avevor means the second good chance for the guests. The back pass to Himmelmann is intercepted by Dursun, but his shot from acute angle is blocked by the goalkeeper with great effort.


39th min: Fürth tries an aggressive pressing with 6 players in the opposite half, so Himmelmann has the safe option to send a long pass. Diamantakos drops to play the ball and extends the pass forward. Wittek is the first on the ball, but Neudecker puts huge pressure on him, so the left back cannot send the first touch pass to the goalkeeper. Neudecker is now on the ball, on the right wing together with Möller Daehli, in a 2v1 situation. The Norwegian receives the pass and advances into the box without being attacked. Diamantakos signals to receive at the near post, but the cross is poor, on the goalkeeper’s direction. Burchert is too relaxed and deflects the ball on the head of Flum, who has the simple task to push the ball in the empty net – 2-0. Very poor defending from Gjasula, who had dropped with Flum until they entered the box, but let him go afterwards.

59th min: The first and only good chance from the guests: Reese is on the ball, half right, after dropping from a more advanced position. Avevor initially follows him, but lets him go and doesn’t take back his position immediately. Dursun moves in the free space left by Avevor and Sobiech follows him. At this moment, St Pauli’s defense is unbalanced, as both central defenders are on the left side, away from their original positions. Reese passes to Dursun, who, in turn, sends a first touch pass in the space he created, at the edge of the box, where Green appears. Ziereis cannot cover the entire free space, is in a 1v2 situation, far from the ball, but Green shoots in Himmelmann’s direction – easy save from the goalkeeper. During the attack, Flum’s positioning was extremely poor, he found himself in no man’s land all the time, as he was too far to block Reese’s forward pass and too far to block Green’s forward run.

62nd min: St Pauli manages to get the ball out of a congested area and send it to Flum. The quick offensive pass starts the counter attack. Both Diamantakos and Neudecker run towards the ball, but the Greek receives the pass and the winger runs into the box to be an option for the next pass. Diamantakos sends a low cross into the box, Möller Daehli is also there and has a fine touch, making it an excellent assist for Neudecker. The latter doesn’t hesitate and places the ball under the crossbar, without chance for Burchert – 3-0.

65th min: Möller Daehli receives the ball on the left wing after a throw in and sends a back pass to Flum, free in a central position. The latter has enough time to prepare his shot, but fires wide from 20m. Sararer offered him too much time on the ball and didn’t put him under pressure.


77th min: Ernst regains possession in midfield and advances half left. He plays a one two pass with Wittek on the left wing and advances into free space. He shoots from long range, but the ball flies over.

78th min: Diamantakos is alone on the left wing on the ball. He dribbles Maloca twice and enters the box. He is one on one with the goalkeeper, but he insists to shoot with the left when the situation required a right foot shot. The shot doesn’t have enough power to fool Burchert, who catches the ball without effort.

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