Mon, Jan 27, 2014 - Page 18 News List

Leverkusen slump leaves Bayern 10 clear


FC Augsburg forward Ji Dong-won, center, heads the ball while Dortmund midfielder Sven Bender, left, and Dortmund goalkeeper Roman Weidenfeller defend during their match in Dortmund, Germany, on Saturday.

Photo: AFP

Champions Bayern Munich remain 10 points clear in the Bundesliga after second-placed Bayer Leverkusen suffered a shock 2-3 defeat at strugglers Freiburg on Saturday — their third-straight league loss.

Bayern extended their record unbeaten run in the Bundesliga to 42 matches with a 2-0 win at Borussia Moenchengladbach on Friday.

Sami Hyypia-coached Leverkusen were stunned at Freiburg as the hosts twice came from behind before midfielder Felix Klaus hit the dramatic 90th-minute winner.

“We were okay in the first half, then we gave away too much ball and Freiburg counterattacked us,” Hyypia said. “They were dangerous, we tried to win the game, but then came the final counterattack.”

The result saw Freiburg climb out of the bottom three up to 15th as the hosts canceled out goals by Bayer midfielders Lars Bender and Simon Rolfes.

Leverkusen have lost their last three games after finishing last year with league defeats to strugglers Frankfurt and Bremen.

Bayern can extend their lead even further with a trip to VfB Stuttgart on Wednesday in a rearranged fixture.

Borussia Dortmund clawed their way up to third place on goal difference over Moenchengladbach with a 2-2 draw at home to Augsburg with Lars’ twin brother Germany midfielder Sven Bender netting for both sides.

The Dortmund midfielder gave the hosts the lead at Westfalenstadion after just six minutes, then turned the ball into his own net on 56 minutes for Augsburg’s equalizer.

Turkey midfielder Nuri Sahin looked to have spared Bender and Borussia’s with a brilliant free-kick to make it 2-1 with 20 minutes left.

However, Augsburg drew level when South Korea’s Ji Dong-won — who will play for Dortmund next season — headed home just two minutes after coming on to leave his side ninth on the table.

“There was too much tension in our play, the joy of playing in a wonderful game like this was hardly to be seen,” Dortmund coach Jurgen Klopp said. “We got more tense as the game wore on and our game didn’t improve, it just got more and more loose.”

The point looks to have come at a cost as Poland winger Jakub Blaszczykowski is thought to have torn his cruciate knee ligament.

Should the injury be confirmed, he will be the second Dortmund star sidelined with a long-term knee injury after center-back Neven Subotic suffered the same injury in November last year.

“We have only bad news,” Klopp said. “For us this is a disaster, but mainly it’s terrible for Kuba [Blaszczykowski].”

Borussia picked up their first point at home after three consecutive defeats in Dortmund and have taken just five points from their last seven league games. They are now 14 points behind Bayern while fifth-placed VfL Wolfsburg also lost ground as they suffered a 1-3 defeat at home to Hanover 96.

New coach Tayfun Korkut celebrated his first game in charge with Hanover’s first away win of the season after eight-straight defeats.

The result put a dampener on Kevin de Bruyne’s debut after the Belgium midfielder became Wolfsburg’s record signing last weekend when he moved from Chelsea.

Hanover took the lead through striker Artjoms Rudnevs, which was canceled out by Croatia striker Ivica Olic’s first half tap-in.

A pair of second-half goals by ex-Dortmund midfielder Leonardo Bittencourt sealed the welcome win for Hanover.

Nuremberg also celebrated a milestone as they became the last team in a major European league to pick up their first win of the season with a 4-0 victory over Hoffenheim.

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