Darmstadt earn second successive promotion to move up to Bundesliga
Berlin, May 25 (IANS) German football club Darmstadt sealed their promotion to top flight while Karlsruhe face Hamburg in a promotional playoff after the last round of matches in Bundesliga second division.
After second division champions Ingolstadt wrapped up their top flight status for next season a week ago, second-placed Darmstadt followed into the first division after a 33-year absence thanks to the 1-0 victory over St. Pauli on Sunday. Meanwhile, third-placed Karlsruhe will face Hamburg for two Bundesliga playoff games, reports Xinhua.
Darmstadt finished their fairy tale season as they marched from the third via the second into Germany's first division. They defended their second place in the standings with the win over St. Pauli.
St. Pauli defended deep and were able to keep offensive-minded Darmstadt at a distance. However, Tobias Kempe utilised a dead ball to score the only goal of the game from 27 metres. Kempe curled the ball over the wall into the bottom left corner to seal the deal in the 71st minute.
Elsewhere, Karlsruhe still have the opportunity to return to the first division after a six-season absence. The 'KSC' defended their third place against fourth-placed Kaiserslautern with a 2-0 victory over 1860 Munich to face Hamburg in a two-legged promotional playoff.
Karlsruhe caught a perfect start on home soil as 1860 Munich's Kai Buelow deflected Manuel Torres' cross into his own goal to open the scoring for the hosts with just nine minutes into the game.
After the restart, Torres was again in the thick of things when he helped them get a two-goal lead after tapping home a through-ball by Enrico Valentini from inside the box in the 69th minute.