Hannover 96 lost the top game of the 2nd Bundesliga. After being outnumbered for more than an hour, the Lower Saxony lost 0-1 (0-0) at leaders SV Darmstadt 98 on Friday evening. In front of 15,475 spectators, Marvin Mehlem scored the winning goal in the 62nd minute for Lilien, who had been unbeaten in 16 competitive games.
The 96ers were decimated from the 30th minute after Phil Neumann blocked a shot by Jannik Müller with his hand in the style of a goalkeeper and saw the red card for preventing a clear goal chance after video evidence. However, Tobias Kempe missed the due penalty, which was denied by Hanover goalkeeper Ron-Robert Zieler.
"I think we played a very good game," said 96 coach Stefan Leitl. "When outnumbered, the boys did very well and still caused problems for the opponent. It's a shame - but that doesn't knock us over."
Even after the change, Darmstadt remained dominant and rewarded themselves for their efforts with the lead by Mehlem, who hit the left corner with a well-placed shot from 20 meters. After that, Müller and Tietz missed further top-class opportunities.
"Today everything was there that makes a top game on Friday night: big fight, lots of intensity and a lot of will. Unfortunately, we're empty-handed," said Hanover's captain Julian Börner. "Nevertheless, you have to be proud of the squad. For weeks you've seen a 96-man team on the field, which really acts as a team and throws everything into the balance."
Schedule 2nd Bundesliga Table 2nd Bundesliga Squad Darmstadt 98 Squad Hannover 96