Thanks to the success on the 18th matchday, Hansa coach Jens Härtel’s team now has 29 points. FC Ingolstadt 04 could push the Hanseatic League to fourth place on Sunday with a home win against MSV Duisburg. Support in the race for promotion to the second division came from SV Meppen, who won against Rostock’s rivals 1. FC Saarbrücken.
“It was a competitive game,” said Härtel at the press conference. “We always managed to defend well at the right moment. The chances for the second goal were there. It’s important that the three points stayed here.”
Two good chances for Hansa
With the arrival of Lion Lauberbach and Simon Rhein in the starting line-up, the Ostseestädter quickly put the guests from Bavaria under pressure through consistent pressing. Hansa had his first chance in the 13th minute, when Verhoek played the ball into the alley for Nik Omladic, who missed from the left five-meter corner to Haching’s goalkeeper Steve Kroll. Only: After that, Hansa Rostock couldn’t think of anything on the offensive for a long time to crack the guests’ defense. After half an hour, the initial superiority was over – the guests balanced the game.
The encounter rippled on until Verhoek suddenly picked up the pace and pulled away from the edge of the box. The ball rushed just past the left post (45th). It was the best opportunity for the North Germans before the break.
Verhoek heads Rostock in the lead
Ten minutes after the restart, the Dutchman made it better: After a wide cross from the advancing defender Nico Neidhart, Verhoek headed the ball by touching the lower edge of the crossbar to make it 1-0 (55th) – it was his sixth goal of the season. Keeper Kroll did not look good. On his way out of the gate, he was too inconsistent. The ball flew in an arc over him into the net.
Haching tried to equalize afterwards, but the guests were dangerous for the first time in the 88th minute by Max Dombrowka, who shot the ball over the bar from close range. The North Germans continued to concentrate on defending their own goal and still had to tremble for victory because they let themselves be pushed too far on the defensive. Hansa brought the lead over time.