Top nationally, a flop so far in Europe: Bundesliga leaders Union Berlin also disappointed on the 2nd matchday of the Europa League group stage and are still waiting for the first points.
At the top Portuguese club Sporting Braga, coach Urs Fischer’s team lost 1-0 (0-0) and thus made their international false start perfect.
The surprise leader, who is still unbeaten in the league, had already disappointed against Royale Union Saint-Gilloise (0-1) a week ago. Vitor Oliveira (77′) scored late for Sporting, who are also undefeated in the Primeira Liga.
“Of course we’re disappointed. The result at the end doesn’t reflect our performance,” said Union coach Urs Fischer. “We had enough chances ourselves in an away game. The only criticism is that we don’t make goals from chances.”
This puts Union under pressure in the fight to survive the winter in Europe, and a win at Malmö FF is almost a must on October 6th. The league continues on Sunday (3.30 p.m. / DAZN) against VfL Wolfsburg.
“We played quite well, but then conceded the goal through a stupid counterattack. Now we have to put things behind us quickly,” said midfielder Rani Khedira.
Becker and Leite miss the lead
Summer signing Tymoteusz Puchacz made his competitive debut for the Berliners as a left-back, regular keeper Frederik Rönnow returned.
Union started boldly with the support of around 2,600 fans who had traveled with them. Sheraldo Becker failed with a lob at Braga keeper Matheus (14th). Central defender Diogo Leite, who was still active for Sporting last season, headed the following corner on the outside of the post.
After that, the guests remained the more active team without developing the necessary pace. Shortly before half-time, Rönnow thwarted the biggest Sporting chance to date with a foot against Simon Banza.
Union came out of the cabin with speed, Julian Ryerson was only centimeters missing when he graduated (48th). After that, his team became more passive and Braga took charge. Both teams lost a lot of turnovers in midfield. Vitinha Sporting shot to victory with a dust-off.
Sporting Braga – Union Berlin: The data of the game
braga: Magalhaes – Fabiano, Tormena, Paulo Oliveira, Sequeira – Al-Musrati, Racic (60th Horta) – Horta, Djalo (60th Medeiros), Vitor Oliveira (86th Castro), Banza (70th Ruiz). – Coach: Jorge
union: Rönnow – Jäckel, Knoche (82nd Leweling) – Leite, Ryerson, Schäfer (67th Haraguchi), Khedira, Haberer (82nd Skarke), Puchacz (64th Trimmel) – Becker (82nd Behrens), Siebatcheu. – Coach: Fisherman
Referee: Filip Glova (Slovakia)
Goal: 1-0 Vitor Oliveira (77′)
Yellow cards: Banza, Horta – Schäfer, Behrens, Ryerson