Things are still up in the air in at both ends of the table following Matchday 28. Here are the results:
Darmstadt 3 – Erzgebirge Aue 1
Despite falling behind early, visiting Darmstadt took charge of their match against Erzgebirge in the second half and ran out deserved winners at the Erzgebirgsstadion on Tuesday evening.
Erzgebirge took the lead in the 8th minute after a colossal mistake by Darmstadt defender Matthias Bader. As he was running back toward his own goal to play the ball back to keeper Marcel Schuhen, Bader inexplicably tripped over his own feet and ceded possession to a trailing Florian Krüger. Krüger took one touch and shot past Schuhen before he could get down to save to give the hosts an early 1-0 lead.
Bader’s teammates picked him up just 10 minutes later. Erzgebirge #1 Martin Männel missed the match through suspension, and his replacement Robert Jendrusch conceded a penalty in the 19th minute, when he tripped up Darmstadt’s Braydon Manu in the box. Tobias Kempe converted the penalty high into the top corner to level things at 1 apiece.
Darmstadt took over things in the second half, on their way to putting 10 shots on target in the match. Union Berlin loanee Nicolai Rapp thought he’d given them the lead in the 47th minute with a header from a free kick, but VAR determined that he was offside in the buildup. Jendrusch then saved from Serdar Dursun and was called into action again in the 66th minute when he punched away Kempe’s scalded free kick.
But Darmstadt were not to be denied, and Dursun bagged his side leading 12th goal of the season in the 72nd minute from Sebastian Hertner’s cross. And it was Darmstadt’s main man that would seal the result in the 81st minute with a shot between Jendrusch’s legs on the counter.
Darmstadt jump up to 5th in the table with the win, while Erzgebirge fall to 7th.
Osnabrück 2 – Greuther Fürth 0
It was an agonizingly long wait, but Lila-Weiß finally got their first win of 2020 at the expense of Fürth at the Sportpark Ronhof Thomas Sommer.
Kleeblätter had the majority of possession on the day (65%-35%) and a big shot advantage (14-8), but had trouble putting their chances on target, as first Paul Seguin and then David Raum shot wide of the goal in the first 10 minutes. Fürth’s profligacy allowed Osnabrück to take advantage against the run of play. Assan Ceesay was allowed to run unmolested into the opposing box and his squared pass found teammate David Blacha who managed to poke the ball past keeper Sascha Burchert and into the net.
Both sides were able to create chances across the remaining moments, but it was Osnabrück who scored again in the 58th minute, via a Niklas Schmidt thunderbolt from a good 20 yards out. Ceesay missed a golden opportunity for a third when he shot wide of the post in the 63rd minute.
Kleeblätter tried hard to get back into the match, but keeper Philipp Kühn managed to preserve the clean sheet by pushing Seguin’s laser free kick onto the crossbar. Osnabrück’s Lukas Gugganig had a goal chalked off by VAR late, but Lila-Weiß had already done enough to earn the 3 points.
Osnabrück pull 4 points clear of the relegation zone with the win, while Fürth drop down to 8th.
Jahn Regensburg 2 – Nürnberg 2
Nürnberg managed to get a point at the Arena Regensburg thanks to a second half stoppage time goal.
Regensburg keeper Alexander Meyer almost gifted Der Club an opening minute goal, but Mikael Ishak couldn’t put the ball on target. Ishak made up for his miss in the 11th minute when, after Hanno Behrens’ slick back heel played him through on goal, he fired high into the top corner to give the visitors the lead.
The hosts fought back however as the first half progressed. Shortly after Sebastian Stolze’s header sailed just over, Andreas Albers struck the post with a left footed effort in the 28th minute. Freiburg loanee Chima Okoroji also hit the post later on with a cross, but Albers managed to find an equalizer just before halftime. He got just enough on Charalambos Makridis’ cross from the right to force it over keeper Christian Mathenia off a deflection.
Regensburg took the lead just 3 minutes into the second half. Mathenia saved Albers’ initial effort, but Stolze was on hand to tuck in the rebound. Needing a goal desperately, Nürnberg tested Meyer several times in the second half, notably from a Behrens header that Meyer just managed to gather.
But sadly for the hosts, they would give Nürnberg the equalizer 4 minutes into second half stoppage time, when substitute center-back Tim Knipping, who had come on only two minutes before, headed into his own net when trying to clear Ishak’s shot.
The draw keeps Nürnberg just above the relegation zone while Regensburg continue to slip down the table into 11th.
Sandhausen 1 – Wiesbaden 0
Sandhausen picked up a much needed win at the BRITA-Arena at the expense of fellow relegation candidate Wiesbaden.
Despite both sides having similar possession numbers, Sandhausen had the majority of shots on the day (15-7). Wiesbaden had the first big chance when Törles Knöll was played through on goal, but keeper Martin Fraisl managed to make the save. The hosts couldn’t find anything more in the first half and Sandhausen grabbed the lead just before the break. Dennis Diekmeier got just enough on a header to sneak it past keeper Heinz Lindner.
Lindner saved from Denis Linsmayer shortly after the second half kicked off and Fraisl had to be on his toes to keep out substitute Marvin Ajani moments later. Wiesbaden midfielder Tobias Schwede was sent off in the 79th minute for a high boot and the hosts never really threatened again. Kevin Behrens nearly gave Sandhausen a two goal cushion in the waning minutes, but Lindner was able to keep him out.
The result gives Sandhausen some breathing room between them and the relegation zone, while Wiesbaden remain 17th.
Bochum 2 – Holstein Kiel 1
Hosts Bochum used two second half goals to hold off Kiel at the Vonovia Ruhrstadion on Wednesday.
Die Störche, looking to build off of their win against Stuttgart on the weekend, had two big chances to take the lead early, but Bochum keeper Manuel Riemann saved first from David Atanga and then from Lee Jae-sung moments later. Riemann stopped Atanga again in the 26th minute, which allowed his teammates to create chances of their own at the opposite end of the pitch.
Arsenal loanee Jordan Osei-Tutu opened the scoring in the 51st minute after being played through on goal by midfielder Miloš Pantović. Kiel attacker Finn Porath hit the crossbar with a header just a minute later and 13 minutes after that, Bochum’s Silvère Ganvoula M’boussy doubled their advantage. The through ball from Robert Žulj was perfect and Bochum’s leading goal scorer sublimely shot past keeper Ioannis Gelios.
Kiel pulled a goal back in the 74th minute through midfleder Jonas Meffert, who headed in a flicked on corner from point blank range. Both sides then pressed for a final goal, but neither side could find the finishing touch. Bochum’s Sebastian Maier hit the bar from close range and Kiel’s Jannik Dehm fired over from a corner just before the final whistle.
Bochum moves up to 10th with the win, while Kiel in fact moved up a place to 6th.
Hannover 1 – Karlsruher 1
A hard fought battle at the HDI-Arena saw Hannover and Karlsruher each take an important point.
KSC’s Christoph Kobald shot just wide in the 3rd minute and Hannover’s Dominik Kaiser’s shot was too high just five minutes after. Kaiser came close again in the 32nd minute when his side-footed effort bounced off the far post. Die Roten’s Edgar Prib also came close from a free kick, but hit the stanchion behind the goal.
The chances kept coming in the second half and just after Hannover’s Timo Hübers tested Karlsruher keeper Benjamin Uphoff with a header in the 47th minute, the hosts opened the scoring. KSC failed to clear a corner from their box and Prib pounced on the loose ball, blasting into the corner just beyond Uphoff’s reach.
The visitors would not go quietly however as Jérôme Gondorf narrowly missed wide with an ambitious volley in the 55th minute. Uphoff then had to stop Hendrik Weydant’s header at the hour mark. KSC’s efforts finally paid off in the 71st minute when leading scorer Philipp Hofmann rose highest to head in Marvin Wanitzek’s cross from the right.
Karlsruher nearly took the lead in the 79th minute, but Marco Djuricin couldn’t find the back of the net after being played through at a tight angle. Substitute Änis Ben-Hatira hit the post from close range in the 87th minute and Uphoff just managed to get enough on Linton Maina’s effort at the other end to push it safely wide.
Hannover remain 9th in the table while Karlsruher pull a point above Wiesbaden in the race for safety.
St Pauli 0 – Heidenheim 0
St Pauli and Heidenheim played out a rather drab nil-nil draw at the Millerntor-Stadion.
Neither side was able to put an attempt on goal in the first half and this was in spite of Heidenheim winning a penalty in the 25th minute when Kiezkicker’s Johannes Flum fouled Niklas Dorsch in the box. Robert Leipertz guided the penalty wide of the right hand post and the match went into halftime scoreless.
Heidenheim did manage to put 3 shots on target in the second half, but St Pauli’s Robin Himmelmann gobbled them all up. The closest either side came to scoring was in second half stoppage time when St Pauli center-back James Lawrence hit the post with a header from a Ryo Miyaichi cross. Otherwise, the hosts failed to test Kevin Müller in the Heidenheim goal and had to make do with a point.
Heidenheim stay 4th while St Pauli drop to 12th.
Stuttgart 3 – Hamburg 2
After playing like doo-doo for the opening 20 minutes and trailing by two goals at halftime, hosts and 3rd placed Stuttgart managed to claw their way back and claim a stoppage time win against 2nd placed Hamburg at the Mercedes-Benz Arena on Thursday evening.
With Bielefeld’s scheduled fixture against Dresden postponed, both sides needed a win to close the gap between themselves and the league leaders. It was the visitors who started best, with Martin Harnik forcing Stuttgart keeper Gregor Kobel into an early save. HSV took the lead a few minutes later, when Leverkusen loanee Joel Pohjanpalo headed in from a corner.
Stuttgart turned up the wick after conceding the first goal and forced opposing keeper Danuel Heuer Fernandes to make several fine saves over the following 15 minutes. Silas Wamangituka, Nicolás González, and Holger Badstuber all tested the HSV keeper, but couldn’t find a way past. Hamburg took advantage by doubling their lead just before halftime from the penalty spot. Pascal Stenzel was whistled for a handball in the box and Aaron Hunt duly converted the penalty kick to give Hamburg a 2-0 lead.
Needing to dig deep in order to get back into the match, the hosts struck early in the second half. Stenzel’s cross found the head of Wataru Endo, one of the smallest players on the pitch, and the Japanese international headed into the top right corner from close range. The physicality of the match increased over the following minutes, with both sides committing several fouls and one of them led directly to Stuttgart’s equalizer in the 60th minute. Heuer Fernandes took down Stuttgart’s Orel Mangala in the box as he tried to clear the ball and González scored from the spot to tie the match.
Both sides looked for a winner in the remaining 30 minutes, but despite chances, set pieces, and fouls, neither side seemed to have another goal in them, particularly after Stenzel hit the left hand post in the 89th minute. But just moments later, from seemingly nowhere, Stuttgart were on the break and González set up Gonzalo Castro to bag the winner in the second minute of stoppage time.
The comeback win moves Stuttgart up to 2nd in the table ahead of Hamburg.
1. Arminia Bielefeld – 53 points
2. Stuttgart – 48 points
3. Hamburg – 46 points
4. Heidenheim – 45 points
5. Darmstadt – 42 points
6. Holstein Kiel – 38 points
14. Sandhausen – 33 points (-4 GD)
15. Nürnberg – 31 points
16. Karlsruher – 29 points
17. Wiesbaden – 28 points
18. Dresden – 24 points*
1. Fabian Klos (Arminia Bielefeld) – 17 goals
2. Manuel Schäffler (Wiesbaden) – 16 goals
T3. Philipp Hofmann (Karlsruher) – 13 goals
T3. Silvère Ganvoula M’boussy (Bochum) – 13 goals
T3. Serdar Dursun (Darmstadt) – 13 goals
Key Upcoming Matches – Matchday 29 (May 29 – 31)
Fürth @ Darmstadt – Friday 5/29, 12:30 pm EST
Arminia Bielefeld @ Holstein Kiel – Saturday 5/30, 7:00 am EST
Stuttgart @ Dresden – Sunday 5/31, 7:30 am EST
Wiesbaden @ Hamburg – Sunday 5/31, 7:30 am EST
*Because of their side being in municipal enforced 14-day quarantine due to COVID-19, Dresden’s Matchday 26-28 fixtures will be made up at later dates.