Stuttgart held on late to beat Köln 2-1 on Wednesday evening. The win moves the Swabians on to the quarterfinals of the DFB Pokal for the second year in a row.
The hosts controlled the match early against their 2.Bundesliga opponents, and Vedad Ibisevic nearly made it 1-0 after 20 minutes but was unable to get his head on Shinji Okazaki's cross. It was 1-0 eleven minutes later. Christian Gentner volleyed Ibrahima Traore's corner past Thomas Kessler for the lead.
It was 2-0 in the 35th minute. Jonas Hector was called for a handball in the penalty area, and Ibisevic converted the penalty into the corner. Stuttgart was pleased to go into the break with the lead and didn't allow Köln a good attempt on goal in the remaining minutes.
Köln came out looking for goals in the second half, but they were tough to find. It wasn't until the 80th minute that they finally found one. Daniel Royer found Christian Clemens, and the midfielder scored to pull one back. They had two chances late, but neither Royer nor Dominic Maroh were able to convert.