Hamburg, Feb 4: Kyriakos Papadopoulos’ winner helped Hamburg to return to winning ways after beating Bayer Leverkusen at the opener of the 19th round in Bundesliga football league.
Leverkusen on Friday suffered their second straight loss whereas Hamburg spped their two-game losing streak thanks to Papadopoulos’ second-half goal, reports Xinhua.
Both sides staged a contested first-half encounter with many fouls and misplaced passes. The 45,653 spectators at the Volksparkstadion had to wait until the 11th minute to see the first chance when Mergin Mavraj’s volley tested Leverkusen goalkeeper Bernd Leno.
However, it remained the only opportunity within the first half as Hamburg worked out the next promising chance through Bobby Wood, who pulled wide on a one-on-one with Leno in the 47th minute.
Bayer Leverkusen lacked in penetration and ideas to pose any threat. Hence, the hosts broke the deadlock with 76 minutes played as loanee Papadopoulos headed home the 1-0 winner following a cross from Nicolai Mueller against his parent club.
The “Werkself” stched almost the equaliser out of the blue but Stefan Kiessling’s header rattled only the woodwork following a corner kick with five minutes to the fil whistle.
With the result, Hamburg climbed on the 16th place, which is a relegation play-off spot, meanwhile Bayer Leverkusen remain on the ninth position of the table.
“The team staged a very disappointing performance. This performance defies any explation. We suffered another setback,” Bayer Leverkusen’s CEO Michael Schade said.
Hamburg head coach Markus Gisdol said: “It was a deserved victory for us today. A goal following a set piece is something special for us.” IANS