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|Hertha hit champions' hopes
Saturday, 20 March 2004
German champions FC Bayern München's hopes of retaining their Bundesliga title suffered another setback as they were held to a 1-1 draw at lowly Hertha BSC Berlin today.
The result gives leaders SV Werder Bremen the chance to establish an eleven-point advantage at the head of the standings as they travel to mid-table VfL Wolfsburg on Sunday.
Ottmar Hitzfeld's side looked on course to close the gap at the top to six points as Dutch international striker Roy Makaay opened the scoring as early as the eighth minute with a well-struck shot from 20 metres.
However, the visitors were unable to add to their lead, and were pegged back two minutes before half-time as Hertha won a penalty and Brazilian midfield player Marcelinho made no mistake from the spot.
Stuttgart slip up
Third-placed VfB Stuttgart also failed to take advantage of Bremen's inactivity as Felix Magath's team were held to a 2-2 draw at bottom side 1. FC Köln. Silvio Meissner gave the visitors a first-half lead, only for Florian Kringe to equalise on the stroke of half-time. Markus Feulner put Köln in front in the 71st minute, but Matthias Scherz's own goal a minute later gave Stuttgart a draw.
Bayer 04 Leverkusen moved into fourth place as second-half goals from Dimitar Berbatov and Marko Babic earned a 2-0 victory at FC Hansa Rostock. Klaus Augenthaler's side therefore moved above VfL Bochum 1848, who surrendered a two-goal lead at 1. FC Kaiserslautern. Trailing 2-0 at half-time thanks to efforts from Vahid Hashemian and Dariusz Wosz, two goals in nine minutes from Vratislav Lokvenc early in the second half earned the home side a point.
BV Borussia Dortmund climbed to sixth place as goals in either half from Ewerthon and Jan Koller earned a 2-0 success at home to Eintracht Frankfurt, who had Henning Bürger sent off shortly before half-time.
FC Shalke 04 slipped below Dortmund as Hannover 96 earned a 2-2 draw in Gelsenkirchen, with Thomas Brdaric scoring twice for the visitors and only a late Ebbe Sand strike sparing Schalke from defeat.
Finally, VfL Borussia Mönchengladbach ran out 3-0 winners at home to Hamburger SV, while in Sunday's other game, struggling TSV 1860 München meet SC Freiburg.