Tired Gladbach settle for Freiburg draw

Mark Rodden
Freiburg's defender Pavel Krmas (C-L) and Moenchengladbach's defender Martin Stranzl (L) vie for the ball on August 31, 2014
Freiburg's defender Pavel Krmas (C-L) and Moenchengladbach's defender Martin Stranzl (L) vie for the ball on August 31, 2014 (AFP Photo/Thomas Kienzle )

Berlin (AFP) - Freiburg missed a penalty but picked up their first point of the new Bundesliga season following a 0-0 draw with Borussia Moenchengladbach on Sunday.

Swiss attacker Admir Mehmedi scooped a spot-kick high over the bar midway through the second half in a drab encounter at Freiburg's Mage Solar Stadion.

Gladbach had beaten FK Sarajevo 7-0 in the Europa League play-offs on Thursday but a fifth competitive match in 16 days looked to be a step too far for the visitors.

"That wasn’t so fantastic,” Gladbach manager Lucien Favre said.

“But I’ve been in Gladbach since February 2011 and that’s the first time we’ve got a point here. We always lost so we can be very satisfied.”

Freiburg 'keeper Roman Buerki tipped over a shot from fellow Swiss international Granit Xhaka 14 minutes into a game that was desperately short of goalmouth action.

Approaching the hour mark, Mehmedi found Jonathan Schmid at the back post but his volley was comfortably turned behind by Gladbach 'keeper Yann Sommer.

Freiburg were given a great chance to go in front when Gladbach defender Tony Jantschke chopped down home substitute Maximilian Philipp after 62 minutes. Mehmedi blazed over, however, meaning the home side are still waiting for their first goal of the new campaign.

Earlier, Mainz and Hanover 96 also played out a scoreless draw.

Mainz had more of the game in the first half but Hanover striker Joselu went closest to scoring before Hiroshi Kiyotake had a shot cleared off the line for the visitors in the second half.

Ja-Cheol Koo, who scored an injury-time penalty in Mainz's draw at Paderborn on the opening day, had a decent appeal for another spot-kick turned down on 13 minutes after a challenge from Leonardo Bittencourt.

Shinji Okazaki fired wide from a tight angle inside the box and the Japanese striker then had his own appeal for a penalty waved away by referee Sascha Stegemann after going to ground under Hanover defender Marcelo.

Hanover, who beat Schalke last weekend, almost broke the deadlock six minutes into the second half after a botched clearance from Stefan Bell fell to Kiyotake.

The Japanese midfielder showed good footwork to create some space before drilling a shot towards the corner – Mainz thankful that Moritz was on the line to clear.

Joselu had a chance to win it with 13 minutes left but, after Artur Sobiech picked him out in the area, he couldn’t direct the ball beyond Karius and both sides had to settle for a point.

On Saturday, Xabi Alonso made his Bayern Munich debut and Robert Lewandowski scored his first goal for the club as the defending champions drew 1-1 at Schalke 04.

The result means that Bayer Leverkusen sit top of the fledgling table following their 4-2 home win over Hertha Berlin.

On Friday, Borussia Dortmund held off a late comeback to beat Augsburg 3-2 in what was their first league win of the new campaign.