Five defeats in a row probably wasn’t what manager Lucien Favre was hoping for to begin another European pursuit in the Bundesliga, hence the departure of the 57-year-old just as many games into the new season.
However, since Andre Schubert took control of Borussia Monchengladbach, things have taken a more fortunate route.
Despite another midweek setback in the Champions League to Manchester City, the Foals should be delighted with their turnaround in the Bundesliga.
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They welcomed fellow Champions League competitors, Wolfsburg, who faced the other Manchester side last week, to Stadion in Borussia-Park on Saturday and enjoyed their second consecutive home victory in style.
The match seemed destined for a goalless stalemate, but a cracking volley from Harvard Nordtveit with 14 minutes to go seemingly crushed the visitors’ hopes of taking all three points home with them.
Any hopes of taking at least one point back to Saxony were shattered moments later when Ibrahima Traore put the game to bed.
If you think Dieter Hecking had a bad enough day – think again. Not only did he witness his side lose on the road for the second time in a week, but he had to endure most of the second half sat with the Monchengladbach fans after being sent to the stands, who showed no mercy in celebrating both goals.
Why are things going back uphill?
Before beating Wolfsburg at the weekend, Andre Schubert took victories in impressive fashion against Augsburg and Stuttgart, scoring seven goals in the process.
Also to the inevitable delight of Monchengladbach fans, Patrick Herrmann has made a full recovery from his detrimental injury that has kept him out for the beginning of the season. As one of their key players, his return has been thoroughly welcomed by everyone associated with the club.
After recently making his return to the pitch, the Foals’ form has coincidentally skyrocketed and the income of goals has surprised a few in contrast to the opening five games. An impressive nine goals have been scored in their last three league matches, easily justified by the return of Hermann.
The 24-year-old is yet to score a goal since returning, as well as waiting to make his first start.
However, the confidence in the team seems to be much higher and because the players know that their starlet is fully fit again, that could be encouraging them to win.
From U23 head coach to interim manager at Monchengladbach – credit where it’s due to Andre Schubert. Out of an available nine league points, the 44-year-old has snapped up every single one in an attempt to lift the club from the relegation zone up to 13th place in a matter of three games.
The players seem to be playing football much more directly and you would think that Schubert has introduced that style to the players since taking over just under a month ago.
Can they regain Champions League football?
After losing five consecutive games in any league, it becomes an uphill struggle to qualify for any European competition, let alone the Champions League.
However, from how well Monchengladbach have performed in recent weeks, they seem to be causing some of the big boys severe damage.
They can use their past three games to form a winning streak, and looking at their upcoming fixtures there should be more emphasis on going ahead with that plan in the dressing room.
However, this will potentially be one of the most competitive Bundesliga seasons to date in terms of European qualification and after such a devastating start; it’s going to be a major task to complete.
Hertha Berlin, Hamburg SV, Schalke, Borussia Dortmund, Wolfsburg and FC Koln of all teams, adjudged by the opening eight fixtures, will be up there battling it out with Monchengladbach for the four available places – one of which is expected to be accommodated by Bayern Munich.
There may be seven months ahead, but the race has already begun. Borussia Monchengladbach have fallen at the first hurdle, but they’re back on their feet. Can they be one of the first four over the line?
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