BERLIN: Hoffenhem and Borussia Dortmund fought out an entertaining 2-2 draw Friday (Saturday in Manila), which saw both sides stay on the fringes of the Bundesliga title race.
Hoffenheim, who move third with the point after their fourth draw in five games, now trail Bayern Munich and Leipzig by six points having played a game more with Dortmund two points further adrift.
The draw saw the hosts remain the only unbeaten club in Europe’s top leagues aside from Real Madrid.
Their coach Julian Nagelsmann, the youngest in the Bundesliga’s history, was up against his ex-mentor Dortmund’s Thomas Tuchel and it was Hoffenheim who drew first blood on three minutes when Mark Uth netted.
Mario Goetze levelled in the 11th minute only for Sandro Wagner to put Hoffenheim back in front on 20 minutes– albeit after 27-year-old referee Benjamin Brand found he had not pushed aside Sven Bender to head in.
Gabon striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang made it 2-2 with his 16th of the season three minutes after the restart after good work by French international Ousmane Dembele.
But Dortmund found their creative thrust somewhat blunted when Dembele had to go off midway through the second period through injury.
Further hampering Dortmund’s cause was a dismissal four minutes before the interval of Marco Reus for a second booking which looked harsh after a tussle with Nadiem Amiri.
Reus kicked the wall in the tunnel as he headed for an early shower.
Aubameyang lightened Dortmund’s mood when he clipped in his 100th goal for the club in 165 appearances.
Surprise package Leipzig on Saturday host fourth-placed Hertha Berlin while Bayern travel to tailenders Darmstadt.