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Last-gasp strike rescues point for Hoffenheim

GERMAN Bundesliga leader Hoffenheim grabbed a last-gasp equalizer to snatch a 1-1 draw at bottom side Borussia Moenchengladbach on Saturday.

Brazilian striker Wellington was on target a minute from time as Hoffenheim stayed top with 39 points from 19 games, two points clear of Hertha Berlin.

Hamburg SV squandered a two-goal lead, losing 2-3 at Karlsruhe SC to remain third on 36 points while Hertha drew 1-1 at Arminia Bielefeld on Friday.

"It is normally impossible to concede three goals after (going 2-0 up)," said Hamburg coach Martin Jol. "We gave away at least a point."

Bayern Munich, fourth on 35 points, was hosting Borussia Dortmund yesterday.

Moenchengladbach stunned the leader a minute before the break when Alexander Baumjohann, who joins Bayern next season, floated the ball over keeper Daniel Haas.

Hoffenheim, the village team which has set the pace with a squad of relative unknowns, needed more than 20 minutes to carve out a decent chance as it lacked the attacking edge that has seen it compile the league's biggest goal tally.

Even the return of striker Chinedu Obasi, who came on for Selim Teber after 62 minutes, did little to improve a front line desperately missing injured top scorer Vedad Ibisevic.

Wellington finally broke through in the 89th when he headed the equalizer.

Hoffenheim coach Ralf Rangnick said his team was lucky to get away with a draw.

"We should be happy with the point because we did not play as planned," he told reporters. "Gladbach played well for 80 minutes and did not allow us to develop our game."

VfB Stuttgart rose to sixth, and remained unbeaten in the league under coach Markus Babbel, when it swept past Bayer Leverkusen 4-2 thanks to two goals from Mario Gomez.

Schalke 04, in ninth, ended a string of bad results to beat Werder Bremen 1-0.


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