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Hamburg defeat Karlsruhe 2-1 in relegation playoff second leg to stay in Bundesliga

Modified 02 Jun 2015, 14:59 IST
Hamburg players celebrate their win in the relegation playoff over Karlsruhe

Karlsruhe (Germany), June 2 (IANS) Hamburger SV will remain in the top division of the Bundesliga football tournament following their 2-1 win over Karlsruhe 2-1 in a dramatic second-leg encounter of the promotion play-off match here.

Hamburg were able to avoid the club's first ever relegation to the second division as substitute Nicolai Mueller scored the winner in a 2-1 win in extra-time to book the "HSV" a spot in Germany's top flight for the season 2015-2016 at the Wildpark stadium here on Monday, reports Xinhua.

Meanwhile, Karlsruhe squandered a one-goal lead in both legs to remain in the second division for another season following the 2-3 loss on aggregate.

The stakes couldn't have been higher for both clubs as Hamburg needed a win or a draw with a score greater than 1-1 to avoid the club's very first relegation in Bundesliga history, since its foundation in 1963, whereas Karlsruhe needed a win or a goalless draw to earn their promotion into the first division after a six-season absence.

Hamburg took the reins from the kick off while the hosts defended deep to lurk for counter attacks. Despite more ball possession, Hamburg didn’t pose any threat to Karlsruhe's well-positioned defence.

The hosts increased their efforts after the restart and were rewarded as Reinhold Yabo scored in the 78th minute after the ball was chipped into his path by Rouwen Hennings.

Hamburg had an ace in the hole as Chilean international Marcelo Diaz silenced the Wildpark stadium when he curled a free kick from 18 meters over the wall and into the top-left corner, restoring parity in the dying seconds of the game.

Mueller made use of Cleber's square pass to slot home to make the score 2-1 with five minutes remaining in extra time. Rouwen Hennings had the chance to equalise but Hamburg goalkeeper Rene Adler saved his penalty in what was a dramatic end to the game.

With the result, the "HSV" rescued their first division status for the second time in a row in a relegation play-off clash.

Published 02 Jun 2015, 14:46 IST
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