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Bebou double lifts Hoffenheim to third in Germany


Berlin (AFP) – Togo striker Ihlas Bebou struck twice on Saturday as Hoffenheim came from behind to seal a 3-1 home win against Augsburg to climb to third in the Bundesliga. 

Covid-hit leaders Bayern Munich lost 2-1 at home to Borussia Moenchengladbach on Friday meaning second-placed Borussia Dortmund can trim the Bavarians’ nine-point lead in the table when they play Eintracht Frankfurt away later Saturday.

In Sinsheim, Augsburg took an early lead through a bullet-header by Michael Gregoritsch before Bebou converted crosses from the left, then right to put Hoffenheim ahead before defender David Raum hit their third goal in stoppage time.

Hoffenheim’s home win allowed them to leap-frog in the table both Freiburg and Leverkusen, who drew at home to Arminia Bielefeld and Union Berlin respectively.

Freiburg threw away a two-goal lead at home as Bielefeld’s Japan midfielder Masaya Okugawa, then substititute forward Bryan Lasme scored second-half goals to seal a 2-2 draw in Germany’s Black Forest.

Freiburg were 2-0 up 20 seconds into the second-half when South Korean midfielder Jeong Woo-yeong netted after Janik Haberer gave the hosts an early lead with a long-range shot.

In Leverkusen, Germany defender Jonathan Tah headed in the hosts’ late equaliser to seal a 2-2 draw with Union Berlin.

Czech Republic striker Patrik Schick bagged his 17th Bundesliga goal this season from a tight angle to give Leverkusen a first-half lead after a powerful run by team-mate Moussa Diaby.

However, Union attacking midfielder Grischa Proemel scored twice before Tah headed in a Karim Bellarabi cross six minutes from time.

Portugal striker Andre Silva scored twice as hosts RB Leipzig routed 10-man Mainz 4-1 with Christopher Nkunku and Dominik Szoboszlai also getting on the scoresheet.

Visitors Mainz had defender Alexander Hack sent off after just 20 minutes for using his arm to block a Silva shot that was heading into the goal.

Hack trudged off and Silva converted the resulting penalty while Szoboszlai doubled Leipzig’s lead just after the break when the Hungarian midfielder fired home after Nkunku’s perfectly-timed pass.

South Korea’s Lee Jae-sung pulled a goal back for Mainz, but just 62 seconds later Leipzig were 3-1 up when Szoboszlai returned the favour by setting up Nkunku before Silva grabbed his second.

The home win sees Leipzig climb to eighth in the table while Greuther Fuerth remain bottom after a goalless draw at home to Stuttgart.

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