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Sports

Hertha Berlin Go Top With 2-1 Win Over Champions Munich

Andrey Voronin was the two-goal hero as Hertha Berlin stunned champions Bayern Munich 2-1 on Saturday, Feb. 14, to claim the Bundesliga lead.

Berlin's Andrey Voronin scores the first goal against Munich's goalkeeper Michael Rensing

Voronin struck twice to give Hertha a home win over Bayern

The Ukraine forward Voronin headed home in the 38th minute and struck again in the 77th in the Olympic stadium to lift Hertha past Munich and TSG Hoffenheim into first place they last occupied in October 2006. Miroslav Klose got the temporary equalizer in the 62nd.

Hertha have 40 points, Hoffenheim are on 39 after being hammered 4-1 at home by Bayer Leverkusen on Friday, and Munich are third with 38 points. Leverkusen have 36 points and so do SV Hamburg who have Sunday's home game with lowly Arminia Bielefeld in hand.

"It's special to beat beat Bayern and the whole city is delighted about first place," said Voronin.

Hertha general manager Dieter Hoeness spoke of a "deserved victory" while his brother Uli, on the same job in Munich, said: "We wasted our scoring chances. But nothing is lost yet, we are in an excellent position."

Hoffenheim loses top spot

Hoffenheim were the toast of the league for many weeks but have now just won once in five games and lost the top spot they had occupied since Nov. 21.

"We are all not in the top form we had in the first half of the season," admitted Hoffenheim general manager Jan Schindelmeiser.

Lucien Favre during a soccer match

Hertha coach Lucien Favre told reporters the the 2-1 win is was deserved

Hertha, whose only German titles date back to 1930 and 1931, rarely made headlines this season but have quietly moved up the table under the guidance of Swiss coach Lucien Favre.

Top striker Marko Pantelic was sidelined with injury for the big match with Juergen Klinsmann's Munich, with the winner taking the Bundesliga lead.

Munich's Italy striker Luca Toni went off seemingly injured in the 35th and Hertha took the lead three minutes later.

Munich goalkeeper Michael Rensing looked undecided and defender Christian Lell was caught off guard by Patrick Ebert's cross which allowed Voronin an unmarked header into the net.

The visitors rebounded after the break and Klose headed home in the 61st after Hertha goalkeeper Jaroslav Drobny had first saved shots from Lucio and Bastian Schweinsteiger.

The last laugh

But Hertha had the last laugh as Munich pressed for the winner, Voronin firing home a low shot on the counter off Raffael's pass with 13 minutes left to delight the 74,000 fans.

VfL Wolfsburg' Edin Dzeko scoring against Eintracht

VfL Wolfsburg rose to sixth place after beating Eintracht Frankfurt

Elsewhere, VfL Wolfsburg moved into sixth place with their first away win of the season, 2-0 at Eintracht Frankfurt from Edin Dzeko's ninth-minute header and a 65th-minute penalty taken by Zvjezdan Misimovic.

VfB Stuttgart drew 3-3 at Hanover 96 to remain unbeaten under new coach Markus Babbel. Stuttgart blew a 2-0 lead from Mario Gomez and Martin Lanig as Hanover rebounded from Jiri Stajner, Jacek Krzynowek and Mikael Forssell. But Thomas Hitzlsperger then got Stuttgart's third with two minutes left.

Schalke 04 languish in midfield after a 2-1 defeat at lowly local rivals VfL Bochum, Mimoun Azaouagh and Christopf Dabrowski reversing Schalke's lead from Kevin Kuranyi.

Werder Bremen suffered another setback in a 1-1 draw with bottom club Borussia Moenchengladbach, their 77th-minute lead from Claudio Pizarro cancelled out by Michael Bradley two minutes later. Cologne and SC Karlsruhe played to a goalless draw.

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