After the first win since his VfB return, coach Bruno Labbadia hugged everyone he could get his hands on. Meanwhile, Paderborn's coach Lukas Kwasniok angrily trudged straight at referee Daniel Schlager about what he thought was too long a stoppage time.
After VfB Stuttgart won the cup fight 2-1 (0-1) at second division SC Paderborn in the fifth minute of added time, things got very emotional. Despite an early slapstick own goal by Konstantinos Mavropanos, VfB Stuttgart reached the quarter-finals of the DFB Cup for the first time in seven years. Thanks to late goals from Gil Días (86') and Serhou Guirassy (90', 5'), the table-15 went on. of the Bundesliga on Tuesday with a final sprint at second division fifth SC Paderborn.
"We always believed in it," commented Stuttgart's sporting director Fabian Wohlgemuth, who was still working for Paderborn a few weeks ago. "We were overweight throughout the game and we were greedy," he said on pay TV broadcaster Sky. As a result, Paderborn missed their third entry into the quarter-finals at the sixth attempt. "That's bitter," commented Paderborn's goalkeeper Jannik Huth: "We defended well up to the 86th minute. Stuttgart didn't have a lot of good chances to score." Paderborn's captain Ron Schallenberg said with a pained expression: "It's better to lose after 90 minutes than after 120."
The game started strangely, was just three minutes and a second old when Paderborn were already celebrating without having to do anything for the goal themselves: goalkeeper Florian Müller had offered to pass back, but with a band-aid over the left Eye-playing Mavropanos shot from the sidelines without looking and so hard backwards that Müller could no longer get close. "That was a memorable start, we were chasing the 0-1 lead," said Wohlgemuth.
According to the DFB, returning from 48 meters into your own goal is the cup's own goal from the greatest distance. Labbadia looked incredulous and motionless at first, then cursed. The Paderborn fans then scornfully applauded every successful return pass from Stuttgart to Müller.
Endo as a driver
From then on, the roles were clearly distributed. The Bundesliga club, driven by the tireless captain Wataru Endo, had the ball almost the entire time and ran. Paderborn, who started defensively in the basic formation with a chain of five, and where Bashir Humphreys (19), who had been loaned to Chelsea just three days earlier, was in the starting XI, threw themselves into every ball and waited for a counterattack. The Swabians didn't really allow that until the break, but they hardly found any gaps at the front either. 8:0 shots on goal were recorded for VfB up to the break and 70 percent possession of the ball - but it was 0:1.
Labbadia added everything he had in terms of personnel: at the break he brought in Genki Haraguchi, who had only been signed by Union Berlin three days earlier, and Luca Pfeiffer, a little over an hour later, brought in a second striker. But his team's approach remained uninspired and unimaginative. It wasn't until Gil Dias walked in that things changed. The Portuguese scored just minutes after coming on as a substitute. And there was another disappointment for Paderborn: Guirassy scored the second VfB goal after a corner.