Matchday 01: FC Sankt Pauli vs 1. FC Nürnberg 3-2

Posted: July 17, 2022 by Zouz in Zweite Liga 2022-23
Tags: , , , , , , ,

Timo Schultz season III, ignition

In front of a colorful (but not completely full, 28.582) Millerntor the very first signs of 2022-23 were revealed. Are we happy? Considering the result of course we are, having done that end of April we would probably play Bundesliga this season (of course they had again a goal on injury time, it just wasn’t enough 😇). Now when it comes to what we saw on the pitch, let’s say that there are mixed, hence confusing, feelings 😎☠️

There was a really touching moment before the game, this one:

The Legend himself dropped by to say goodbye and he did it in his own classy way. This is a moment to be kept, a moment signifying maybe (even though it wasn’t only about Ewald) the end of brown white romantic times… (and don’t get me started by asking “why?”…) No need to start again talking on the guy, everything has been said already, anyone caring to read our small farewell to Ewald can find it here

To the match now, as already has been said, this was a huge question mark for everybody. Absence of enough test games, absence of the usual open dress rehearsal (fuck FIFA, fuck UEFA, fuck TV providers, fuck sponsors and fuck their World Cup!), almost all of us were eventually awaiting yesterday in order to get a few first impressions from the squad. Let’s have a look at what’s happened.

Welllll, match didn’t start exactly in an ideal way. After the opening two minutes of reconnaissance and Saliakas‘ (Μάνο καλωσήλθες φίλε, ελπίζουμε να μείνεις χρόνια μαζί μας, τα καλύτερα!) first shot in the game (on 2’, forget about it 😅), it became soon obvious that our defense is still in pre-assembly stage. Complete lack of communication between Medic and Smarsch at the edge of our box on 7′, they offered  the ball to incoming Daferner on the right, fortunately for us he didn’t get fast enough to the ball and, by the time he attempted the finish, Smarsch was back under his posts and blocked the (not so good) shot. Next opportunity on 14′, again for FCN, again Daferner, this time with an 8m shot that ended up far too wide. Guests kept applying pressure successfully and the next one on 20′ belonged to them as well, a Handwerker cross to Sörensen on 20′ which the latter was unable to finish. Keep going this way probably wouldn’t age well, however on 24′ the incident that changed the flow of the game took place, deep free kick by Paqarada from the left, divine Irvine header to the far post and, out of the blue, 1-0 for FCSP! Of course odds may changed in our favor but this didn’t really affect the psychedelic chaos taking place at the back. New monumental miscommunication on 27′, this time between Smarsch and Dzwigala, this time Duah was the beneficiary and Paqarada the one who saved the day… Our squad probably misunderstood the cries of agony from the terraces and maybe thought that fans are enjoying the show and they decided to repeat the act on 32′, this time routine was executed by the, already successful from 7′, SmarschMedic pair, Daferner was again in the role of the beneficiary and Smarsch was again the one who managed to repair the situation, in a quite stylish manner actually. The good thing is that, especially after 20′, every time we managed to forward the ball a little, there were good ideas at the front and probably this was the thing that saved us from ourselves yesterday, some 10′-15 of good football when ball in our possession. FCSP more visible in the pitch after 1-0, chance with Matanovic on 34′ (Mathenia saved to corner, replay suggested that ball was going out of bounds but you can never know that) and penalty for FCSP on 35′ for a Schindler contact with Daschner. Penalty appeared to be marginal, nevertheless it stood the VAR test and it was converted to 2-0 by Paqarada on 37′. The way our defense was behaving yesterday, 2-0 probably wouldn’t be enough either but the perfect storm within the FCN defender’s heads after the 2nd goal, allowed Daschner to do whatever he liked in their box and finish with an elegant shot for the 3-0 on 39′! Insane outcome, completely incompatible with the overall picture of the 1st half but still good enough to get everyone in Millerntor up to their feet ☠️

fcsp_fcn_2223_01
1-0 ☠️ (source: http://www.fcstpauli.com, ©️Witters)

2nd half underway and, with half the Haupttribune probably still eating sausages, drinking beer and chatting at the lobby, goal for FCN on 46′. Forward ball to the back of our defense, Duah the recipient, he was proven too fast for Dzwigala and finished with a touch outside the box (a little to the right) – looks like Smarsch initially thought that the ball is going out and when he found that he’s wrong was a little too late… Squad acted smart following the goal by taking the initiative and moving the game to the other side instead of waiting for a disaster to happen and the 52′-57′ period was actually quite active. Good tight angled Paqarada shot saved to corner by Mathenia on 52′, Mathenia was there again for an Irvine header after the subsequent corner (53′) and there were 3 more shots by Eggestein (2 of them wide, 3rd deflected by Schindler) between 55′ and 56′. With game having been moved away from our box (where deadly danger was lurking) a sense of safety started again to circulate in the atmosphere. Nothing much happening on the pitch, there was a cunning attempt by FCN to trick Smarsch with an approx. 30m free kick on 74′, Wekesser, instead of filling into the heart of the box, chose directly our left corner but Smarsch saw it coming and repelled to corner. With this and that, we were heading towards an easy ending (it actually turned to be this way) but nothing is complete without a small dose of drama in Millerntor. Mathenia sent the ball from his end to our defense, colossal Medic head assist to Valentini, who immediately executed (unable to do anything here) Smarsch for the 3-2 on 93’… Subsequent 60″ thriller didn’t produce any further unpleasant surprises, on the contrary it gave an extra sense of relief (bonus fan points) on full time whistle 😅

fcsp_fcn_2223_02
source: http://www.fcstpauli.com, ©️Witters

Alright, are we happy or what? Yeah, as said, of course we are! Everybody knew in advance that, under these circumstances, this would be a beta version of this season’s squad, so it was mostly about getting the result and being at least at a level where we can work further from. Victory achieved was easier than then final 3-2 suggests and, as said in the beginning, this is anything but trivial. Regarding what happened in the pitch, the good news are that we witnessed an FCSP with lots of creative ideas and able to take advantage of even small spaces. We also watched an FCSP able to control pace in the midfield and also able to overcome successfully unpleasant situations (like the FCN goal on 46′). On the other hand, we experienced a squad inflicting ABSOLUTE TERROR when ball in or around our box, even without serious pressure being exercised. Not sure who’s responsible for the communication between keeper and the rest of the defense but something’s gotta give here, season has started, this is a time bomb. There were also individual performances below par, of course is not our business to criticize the players, this is other people’s work, all we can say here is “c’mon guys, you can do better than that”, something that’s actually true. The most important thing is that the above are weaknesses that can be corrected with team work and some extra work from the technical staff (including our squad psychologist maybe, we have one, right?), what we saw yesterday looks like a solid foundation to built further on. Don’t forget, we have also a lot of new faces to be incorporated in the squad (only two of them were part of the starting XI), welcome to all of them,  special mention to Betim Fazliji, who signed his contract on Friday and was on the bench yesterday 😎 It’s now about finishing the summer preparation with season in progress, let’s get to work 😎

Next week is a trip to Hannover and, having watched their opening match vs FCK, I can tell you these guys are dangerous. They have defensive issues similar to ours but they dominated FCK in the 2nd half and the final result (2-1 defeat) doesn’t really do justice to them. Remains to be seen whether lessons learnt from yesterday will have been properly digested by then. For now, all we can say is, have a good season everybody, FORZA SANKT PAULI!!!  ☠☠☠

Match data (people): https://www.kicker.de/st-pauli-gegen-nuernberg-2022-bundesliga-4781740/aufstellung

Match data (stats): https://www.kicker.de/st-pauli-gegen-nuernberg-2022-bundesliga-4781740/spieldaten

Highlights: match goals only

PS: Good thing that we have still some of that Kyereh cash 🤘🏾Just keep it for special occasions and avoid doing it on a weekly basis people, we can’t afford it 😅

Further reading:

Comments

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.