Clock ticks on Hamburg's Bundesliga future

Jo Caldwell
May 13, 2018

Hamburg actually beat Gladbach 2-1 at Volksparkstadion, with goals coming from Aaron Hunt and Lewis Holtby.

At Hamburg - who had survived the relegation play-offs in 2014 and 2015 - Gladbach fans mocked their counterparts by unfurling their own clock which ticked down towards their opponents' impending demotion, and as the game entered stoppage time a number of home fans hurled flares towards the pitch.

German football club Hamburg have been relegated from the Bundesliga for the first time in the club's history.

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Their 16th-placed finish in the league puts them into the two-legged relegation playoff against Holsten Kiel, the first leg of which takes place next Thursday.

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Jonas Hector brought Cologne level just after the half-hour mark with an exquisite chip, but Divock Origi restored the lead for Wolfsburg, edging Hamburg closer to disaster.

But their 54-year stint in the Bundesliga has come to an end and that clock will now need resetting.

At the top, aside from champions Bayern Munich suffering a surprise 4-1 hammering at home to VfB Stuttgart in Jupp Heynckes' final game in charge, there was still the small matter of the top four places to sort out.

Marco Reus equalised for Dortmund after half-time, but goals from Adam Szalai and Pavel Kaderabek fired Hoffenheim into Europe's elite.

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Leverkusen instead are forced to settle for a place in the Europa League, along with Leipzig, whose 6-2 thumping of Hertha Berlin ultimately counted for little as the other results failed to go their way.

Timo Werner pushed the visitors further clear with a goal on the break and Lookman found Augustin for a match-killing strike shortly before the hour mark.

Elsewhere, Guido Burgstaller's bullet header saw Schalke edge Eintracht Frankfurt 1-0 and Werder Bremen left it late to triumph 2-1 at Mainz, Theodor Gebre Selassie grabbing the victor after Florian Kainz had cancelled out Jean-Philippe Gbamin's opener.

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