Germany: Bundesliga
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N. Dovedan (90)
By Ultan Corcoran@UltanCorcoran

Heidenheim and Dovedan decide Darmstadt's Bundesliga fate in dramatic fashion

SV Darmstadt hosted Heidenheim to round off the fixtures for Matchday 31 this evening. Heidenheim's Nikola Dovedan struck late for a 1-0 win that officially relegates the Hessen club.

Torsten Lieberknecht's side looked full of intent early on as Tim Skarke and Fabian Nürnberger combined to fire the first warning shot. Heidenheim responded as Eren Dinkçi and Tim Kleindienst attempted to test Schuhen but to no avail. 

Marcel Schuhen's spectacular reflex save presented the moment of the half. Patrick Mainka couldn't quite believe how his header was kept out from close range. At the other end, Nürnberger flashed wide again. Despite Heidenheim's comfortable position in the Bundesliga standings, everything about that first-half resembled a relegation six-pointer. Darmstadt's top flight existence hinged on every moment.

Tim Skarke's volley after the break tested Kevin Müller who had a quiet afternoon up until that juncture. However, another wave of Heidenheim pressure followed suit. Several corners in succession mustered little until Tim Kleindienst tried his luck from distance. His ferocious strike dipped and swerved menacingly, but Marcel Schuhen bravely extended his right forearm to the ball. A save worthy of a second look. 

Leading the charge for Die Lillien all night, Nürnberger's free-kick stung the palms while Oscar Vilhelmsson repeated the dose, but the firm fists of Kevin Müller redirected the strike over the aluminium. Roared on by an ever-willing home crown, Darmstadt would be undone. In the final minute of normal time Christian Kühlwetter curved his run behind the high line perfectly. The substitute squared for Nikola Dovedan, as Schuhen lay beaten on the turf. Thus a defeat that extinguishes Darmstadt's existence in the German top-flight.

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