Germany: Bundesliga
FT
1 - 1
(1 - 0)
FC Bayern
Hoffenheim
B. Pavard (17)
A. Kramarić (71)
By Peter Weis@PeterVicey

15:30 Kickoffs: Bayern and Dortmund both drop points against relegation candidates, Leipzig move up to third

Plenty of exciting action in the latest set of Bundesliga 15:30 kickoffs as the two title contenders jostled for position as part of the concurrent matches. When the dust settled, Bayern and Dortmund remained two points apart at the top of the table after both drawing their respective matches against relegation candidates. 

A 1-1 draw for Bayern against Hoffenheim and a 3-3 draw between Dortmund and Stuttgart does neither title aspirant much good. Dortmund in particular will be gutted after conceding all three goals with a man-advantage. RB Leipzig proved the only team capable of taking care of business and are up to third place after a 3-2 win over Augsburg. 
Thomas Tuchel's FC Bayern München have now dropped their first points in the league after failing to prevail against Hoffenheim in the new head-coach's third league match in charge. A 1-1 draw against Pellegrino Matarazzo's Kraichgauer could have cost the record champions first-place in the table were it not for the fact that Dortmund also couldn't snatch all three points against Stuttgart in a simultaneous kickoff.

Tuchel made two changes to the side that fell 0-3 to Man City on Tuesday. Joao Cancelo and Thomas Müller replaced Alphonso Davies and Jamal Musiala on a pair of like-for-like swaps. TSG trainer Pellegrino Matarazzo also made two changes to the team that beat Schalke last Sunday. Ozan Kabak and Angelo Stiller started in place of Kevin Vogt and Finn Ole Becker.

Bayern, as expected, were able to enjoy the lion's share of possession. The hosting Bavarians nevertheless couldn't really locate an offensive rhythm in the opening quarter-of-an-hour. Benjamin Pavard was able to open the scoring in the 17th off a poorly defended set-piece. The Kraichgauer guests failed to clear their lines after a corner. Kingsley Coman was able to slip Pavard through for a simple finish on the 1-0.

Not a great deal happened over the course of the rest of the first-half. Bayern ran at their opponents consistently, yet weren't able to generate any true scoring threat. Hoffenheim, on the other hand, were far too sloppy in their passing to construct useful counters. The Allianz Arena crowd remained quiet as a sleepy opening 45 produced next to no highlights from either side.

The hosts showed some more vigor after the restart, with both Serge Gnabry and Leroy Sané coming close with efforts in the opening three minutes. Matarazzo's men too got a chance in the 55th. Pavel Kaderabek narrowly popped an Angelino cross over. Tuchel's crew continued to struggle in attack, even after the FCB trainer introduced Musiala, Davies, and Mathys Tel just after the hour-mark.

The record champions were ultimately made to pay for their inability to close the game out when the TSG were gifted a dead-ball opportunity just outside the area following a Müller foul on Andrej Kramaric in the 69th. Kramaric finished past Yann Sommer directly on the ensuing free-kick. The guests had drawn level.

Pavard thought he had put his team back ahead two minutes later, but the Frenchman's 2-1 was disallowed for offside in the 73rd. Tel and Gnabry were able to engineer a couple of half chances late on, but the defending champs weren't able to break the deadlock. The fixture finished 1-1 and the Allianz Arena crowd voiced their disapproval with a smattering of jeers and whistles.

Elsewhere in the Bundesliga's 15:30 kickoffs, an injury-depleted FC Augsburg side did manage to take an early lead against favored RB Leipzig at the Red Bull Arena. After Arne Maier put the Fuggerstädter up 1-0 in the 5th, however, the response from Marco Rose's Saxons was swift. Timo Werner set up Kevin Kampl's equalizer five minutes later. Werner would then complete a scorer's brace before the first half was out. Ruben Vargas pulled a goal back with eight minutes to play, but the German Red Bulls were able to stave off the late comeback.

Borussia Dortmund were unable to stave VfB Stuttgart comeback at the Mercedes Benz Arena. Edin Terzic's Schwarzgelben squandered their opportunity to draw level with Bayern on points at the top of the table by conceding two second half goals to the shorthanded Swabians. Sebastian Hoeneß' VfB were down 0-2 and reduced to ten-men after Kostas Mavropanos was sent off in the 39th.

Strikes by Tanguy Coulibaly and Josha Vagnoman in the final 12 minutes drew Stuttgart level. Giovanni Reyna appeared to have secured the three points for the title aspirants with the 3-2 tally at 90+2, but VfB attacker Silas struck home another equalizer at 90+7. The goal was unfortunately gifted to the Congolese attacker when 19-year-old debutant Soumaila Coulibaly failed to clear a ball out of the box.

The third draw of the afternoon came at the RheinEnergieStadion in Köln. Bo Svensson's FSV Mainz 05 and Steffen Baumgart's Geißböcke could not be separated in a contest that ended 1-1. Ludovic Ajorque and Dejan Ljubicic scored for their respective sides. The draw pulls Svensson's Rheinhessen up to 7th place in the table. Eintracht Frankfurt have a chance to overtake Mainz for the final European playoff place with a win or draw against Gladbach this evening.

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