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Sports

Hamburg and Stuttgart draw, while Wolves win

Wolfsburg claim a victory in Augsburg, while earlier both Hamburg and Stuttgart failed to secure their midtable status. Defensive instability turned the match into one of the wildest rides of the season.

Stuttgart came roaring out the blocks in this one. Only three minutes had gone, when Vedad Ibisevic sent through Alexandru Maxim, and the Romanian staked the visitors to the lead. The southern Germans looked to be in control, but a pair of slapstick falls by William Kvist open up space for Pierre-Michel Lasogga to equalize.

Hamburg then seized the initiative, but Stuttgart regained the lead in the 37th minute against the run of play. Maxim thumped a free kick into the box, and Christian Gentner headed home.

After the restart, halftime substitute Maximilian Beister slotted home a Marcel Jansen cross to level the score. Hamburg's joy was short-lived, though, as Johan Djourou scored an own goal in minute 64. A porous central defense threatened to become the hosts' undoing.

Luckily for Hamburg, the right side of Stuttgart's defense was equally poor. In minute 67, the hosts pushed the ball up the left flank and Rafael van der Vaart blasted home yet another equalizer.

Hamburg then had a series of chances but couldn't find the range. Five minutes from time, Antonio Rüdiger was sent off for a light slap to van der Vaart's abdomen. That didn't matter, though, as Hamburg didn't have the time to exploit their man advantage.

"For football fans it was one of the highlights of the season, but not for us," Stuttgart coach Thomas Schneider said after the match. "If you take the lead three times, you expect to leave the pitch as the winner."

The 3-3 draw leaves Stuttgart in eighth place while Hamburg remain near the bottom of the table.

Wolfsburg squeak by Augsburg

Wolfsburg players celebrate

The Wolves got their first away win of the season

The concluding match of round 9, Augsburg-Wolfsburg, was also a seesaw affair. The hosts were the more active side at the start and took a deserved lead when Tobias Werner blasted home after two fantastic saves by Wolves keeper Diego Benaglio.

Augsburg were getting the better of Wolfsburg, especially on the flanks, and were unlucky not to be up by two or three goals after the first half hour. Then, out of nowhere, 19-year-old forward Maximilian Arnold unleashed a slashing shot from distance to level the score.

And things got worse for Augsburg just before the break, as Luiz Gustavo headed in a long free kick to give the Wolves an utterly undeserved halftime lead.

In the second half, the hosts had more of the ball but struggled to take the game to Wolfsburg. The Wolves were closer to extended their lead than Augsburg were to claiming an equalizer, but there were no more goals, and the match ended 2-1.

That result takes Wolfsburg up to ninth in the table, while Augsburg drop to 113th.

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