Berliner Tageblatt - Leverkusen stay unbeaten with last-gasp strike at Dortmund

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Leverkusen stay unbeaten with last-gasp strike at Dortmund
Leverkusen stay unbeaten with last-gasp strike at Dortmund / Photo: © AFP

Leverkusen stay unbeaten with last-gasp strike at Dortmund

Josip Stanisic scored in the seventh minute of stoppage time as Bayer Leverkusen extended their unbeaten run to 45 games in all competitions with a 1-1 draw at Borussia Dortmund on Sunday.

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Crowned Bundesliga champions for the first time last week, Leverkusen looked set to lose their unbeaten run when Dortmund's Niclas Fuellkrug scored with nine minutes remaining.

As they have done so often this season however, Leverkusen scored late, Stanisic's goal coming from a corner deep into added time.

The goal was Leverkusen's 14th to come after the 90th minute this season and kept their dreams of becoming the first team to go unbeaten through a Bundesliga season alive.

Both sides looked heavy legged from their midweek European ties, with Dortmund and Leverkusen qualifying for the semi-finals of the Champions League and Europa League respectively.

Neither side managed to carve out a clear chance in the opening half, with Alex Grimaldo for Leverkusen and the hosts' Marcel Sabitzer going closest.

With less than 10 minutes remaining, Fuellkrug put Dortmund on track to do what no other team has managed to do this season.

Sabitzer lofted a cross across the face of goal to Fuellkrug, who rocketed a volley past Leverkusen goalkeeper Lukas Hradecky and into the back of the net.

Leverkusen coach Xabi Alonso brought on Victor Boniface in search of a late goal and the Nigerian was shown a red card for his involvement in a scuffle, but it was overturned by VAR.

Late in stoppage time, Dortmund goalkeeper Gregor Kobel saved a Grimaldo free-kick, leading to a corner which was headed in by Bayern Munich loanee Stanisic.

The draw leaves Dortmund two points behind fourth-placed RB Leipzig in the race for the final guaranteed Champions League spot.

Dortmund travel to Leipzig next week and will be missing Ian Maatsen and captain Emre Can, who picked up yellow cards, through suspension.

- Ducksch doubles up -

Werder Bremen took a major step to ensuring Bundesliga football next season as Marvin Ducksch scored a brace in a 2-1 home win over high-flying Stuttgart.

The victory, Bremen's first since mid-February, lifts Ole Werner's side to 34 points, eight clear of the relegation play-off spot and above a clutch of teams living dangerously near the drop.

For the visitors, who have guaranteed at least a Europa League place for next season, the loss was their first since January.

After coming through a two-legged relegation play-off last season to stay in the top flight, Stuttgart sit third, three points behind second-placed Bayern Munich and six clear of fifth-placed Dortmund.

"That was hard work today, definitely," Ducksch told DAZN. "I have to pay the lads a huge compliment."

Stuttgart winger Jamie Leweling brought down Felix Agu in the box on 27 minutes and the referee pointed to the spot.

Ducksch stepped up and slotted the ball past the outstretched hand of Stuttgart 'keeper Alexander Nuebel.

Former Bremen youth team player Deniz Undav, on loan at Stuttgart from Brighton, had a golden chance to equalise on the cusp of half-time, but headed against the crossbar.

Stuttgart coach Sebastian Hoeness made two changes at the interval but Bremen started the second half better, Ducksch finishing off an intricate, length-of-the-field passing move to double their lead.

Romano Schmid, who slid in a perfect pass for Ducksch's second, said: "We owed that to the fans. Today, we played a really, really good football game."

Stuttgart gave themselves hope of snatching at least a point when Undav pulled a goal back on the 71-minute mark, his 17th goal of the Bundesliga campaign.

Top scorer Serhou Guirassy went down under heavy attention in the box in the 87th minute but was ruled to be offside, denying the striker a chance to level things up from the spot.

T.Bondarenko--BTB