Gladbach go third in Group D with Sevilla KO

Mönchengladbach 4-2 Sevilla André Schubert's team overtook Sevilla into third place after two-goal Lars Stindl fired them to an impressive first victory in the group stage.

Lars Stindl after putting Mönchengladbach in front
Lars Stindl after putting Mönchengladbach in front ©Getty Images
  • Lars Stindl opens scoring on 29 minutes
  • Goals from Fabian Johnson and Raffael make it 3-0
  • Vitolo's looping effort gives Sevilla lifeline
  • Stindl increases lead; Éver Banega spot kick pulls one back
  • Final Group D games: Manchester City v Gladbach, Sevilla v Juventus (8 December)

Mönchengladbach climbed into third place in UEFA Champions League Group D with a 4-2 victory over Sevilla, whose hopes of reaching the knockout stage came to an end at Borussia-Park.

Going into the game on the back of a nine-match unbeaten run, the already eliminated hosts started on the front foot and forced Sevilla goalkeeper Sergio Rico into early action. The 22-year-old did well to save long-range efforts from Raffael and Ibrahima Traoré, who was forced off with an apparent thigh problem not long afterwards.

Sevilla had struggled to deal with Traoré's raw pace in the opening exchanges, but the Guinean international's injury served to stir the visitors into life. Michael Krohn-Dehli had a low shot blocked, before Yevhen Konoplyanka was denied by a superb one-handed stop by Yann Sommer.

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If there was little to choose between the teams as the half-hour approached, the Bundesliga side eventually broke through on 29 minutes. A cross-cum-shot from Gladbach captain Granit Xhaka found Lars Stindl at the far post, and he side-footed into the unguarded net to give André Schubert's men the lead.

The Foals, having registered 18 attempts on goal before the interval, did not take long to test Rico after the restart. Oscar Wendt threatened with a powerful, dipping drive from the edge of the Sevilla area, before Xhaka was frustrated by a brilliant sprawling save from Rico.

Aware that nothing but a victory would maintain their hopes of reaching the knockout rounds, Sevilla began to throw bodies forward in search of an equaliser. Their bold approach very nearly paid dividends, yet neither Konoplyanka nor Kevin Gameiro could hit the target from promising positions.

Unai Emery's charges paid dearly for their profligacy. Further strikes from Fabian Johnson and Raffael made it 3-0 with 12 minutes left, although Vitolo's subsequent dinked finish appeared to give Sevilla a lifeline. That hope was short-lived, however, as midfielder Stindl's low strike increased the advantage to 4-1. Éver Banega slotted home a late penalty, but it was not enough to prevent the Spaniards exiting the competition.

Lars Stindl scores Gladbach's fourth
Lars Stindl scores Gladbach's fourth©Getty Images

Key player: Lars Stindl
The former Hannover captain netted his second and third goals of this European campaign on Wednesday. His partnership with Raffael continues to blossom under Schubert, who will be delighted by the No13's display.

Foals a force to be reckoned with
As during the visits of Manchester City and Juventus, Mönchengladbach gave as good as they got against the Spanish outfit. The Foals certainly do not look out of place at this level and if they can clinch third spot, they will be confident of progressing to the latter rounds of the UEFA Europa League.

Sevilla must improve
With Gladbach facing the unenviable task of a trip to City in a fortnight's time, Sevilla still stand a reasonable chance of reaching the UEFA Europa League themselves. To do so, Emery's side will have to make more of their goalscoring opportunities.

André Schubert, Mönchengladbach coach
Today we wanted to be brave and we managed to do that. Sevilla were always dangerous on the break, although that was also because we played very offensively. Now we want to get a result at Manchester City. Third place is in our own hands, but the task will be very demanding.

©AFP/Getty Images
©AFP/Getty Images
©Getty Images
©AFP/Getty Images