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Dortmund slips, Hertha Berlin soars in Bundesliga

dortmund

Borussia Dortmund salvaged a 3-3 draw at lowly Ingolstadt, while Hertha Berlin kept its dream start going by moving joint-top in the Bundesliga on Saturday.

Christian Pulisic, a second-half substitute, scored one and set up another to prevent Dortmund from slumping to its third defeat of the season. He prodded home the equalizer from close range in the last minute after Orjan Nyland saved Lukasz Piszczek’s initial effort.

Meanwhile, Hertha defeated previously unbeaten Cologne 2-1 in a hectic game at home to move level with Bayern Munich.

“It’s a bit much,” Hertha striker Vedad Ibisevic said of being called Bayern’s challenger after Hertha’s best ever start to the league. “We’re playing well but it’s early. We’re not Bayern-chasers — that’s other teams.”

Dortmund’s title chances took another blow after dropping points for the fourth time in eight games.

Almog Cohen gave Ingolstadt an early lead after a poorly defended free kick, then Roman Weidenfeller prevented the home side going further ahead when he blocked Lukas Hinterseer’s overhead kick. Weidenfeller started for the first time since March as Roman Buerki had a cold.

Another free kick from a similar position on the right allowed Dario Lezcano to head in Ingolstadt’s second.

Bad at the back, Dortmund also created little up front in the face of Ingolstadt’s well-organized defence.

Thomas Tuchel sent on Pulisic after the break and Mario Goetze shortly afterward. The latter was involved straight away as Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang pulled one back with his seventh of the season.

The celebrations lasted less than a minute, however, as Lezcano grabbed his second, minutes before Ingolstadt hit the post.

Pulisic set up Adrian Ramos to get within one in the 69th, and his second goal of the season salvaged a point that neither side will cherish. Ingolstadt was previously bottom after six straight defeats.

HERTHA BERLIN 2, COLOGNE 1

Ibisevic fired Hertha into an early lead after a fine run and cross from Mitchell Weiser.

Anthony Modeste grabbed the equalizer with his league-leading eighth goal of the season in the 65th, converted from close range after great interplay between Jonas Hector, Konstantin Rausch, and Leonardo Bittencourt.

But Niklas Stark grabbed the winner less than 10 minutes later for the high-flying home side.

DARMSTADT 3, WOLFSBURG 1

Valerien Ismael’s tenure at Wolfsburg got off to a rocky start when last defender Jeffrey Bruma was sent off for denying a clear goal chance. Anis Ben-Hatira scored from the resulting free kick in the 25th.

Germany striker Mario Gomez equalized on the hour with his first Wolfsburg goal, but Laszlo Kleinheisler restored the home side’s advantage eight minutes later, and Sandro Sirigu sealed the win.

Ismael’s predecessor, Dieter Hecking, was sacked on Monday.

BAYER LEVERKUSEN 0, HOFFENHEIM 3

Leverkusen was dealt a blow when forward Kevin Volland was sent off against his former side in the sixth minute for denying Kerem Demirbay a clear goal chance.

Demirbay fired under the bar to open the scoring, Sandro Wagner made it 2-0 early in the second half, and set up Steven Zuber to score on the hour.

FREIBURG 2, AUGSBURG 1

Second-half goals from Maximilian Philipp and Nils Petersen, both set up by Vincenzo Grifo, gave Freiburg its fourth win of the season.

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