Hansa Rostock - VfB Lübeck

Germany: 3. Liga
Hansa Rostock B. Bahn (Pen. 41)
VfB Lübeck S. Benyamina (26)

3. Bundesliga's conclusion: Rostock secure first promotion in over a decade, FC Bayern II relegated to fourth tier

By Peter Vice

East Germany's most successful club since reunification is back in the second division after ten years in the 3. Bundesliga. 

Hansa Rostock joins fellow Ossies Dynamo Dresden in clinching automatic promotion from the third flight on the 2020/21 season's final matchday. 

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Mecklenburg-Vorpommern's Hansa Rostock commemorated their first promotion in a decade before 7,500 live fans at the Ostseestadion on Saturday afternoon. A 1-1 draw with regional rivals VfL Lübeck proved sufficient to secure second-place in the 2020/21 3. Bundesliga's table. The Hanseatic Kogge steers towards second-division football for the first time since 2010/11

Rostock is considered the most historically successful of the football clubs from the former East Germany after spending ten years in the top flight between 1995 and 2005. The city also played two additional single seasons in the Bundesliga during the 1991/92 and 2007/08 campaigns. After being relegated from the Bundesliga in the spring of 2008, the East Hanseaten quickly slipped into the obscurity of the third tier twice in four years. 

Ex-Rostock striker Soufian Benyamina looked to spoil his former club's day with the opening goal in the 26th minute. Rostock's Bentley Bexter Bahn, playing in his 200th professional match, was nevertheless able to answer with a converted penalty three minutes from halftime. There would be no more scoring and in fact very little action during a tense second half. 

The thousands of Rostock fans in attendance kept a close eye on the Ingolstadt-1860 München match as the seconds ticked down. In the battle of two Bavarian clubs, Ingolstadt's 3-1 win was enough to draw die Schanzer level with Rostock on 71 points. The win was not decisive enough, however, as the Hanseatic still claimed second place with a plus-three goal differential. 

Elsewhere in the 3. Liga on the final matchday, Dynamo Dresden celebrated not only promotion, but the league title as well following a 1-0 win over SV When Wiesbaden. The SGD are back in the second division after only one year. Rostock opponents Lübeck were already relegated, as were SpVgg Unterhaching. 

A loss in the final round actually means last last year's third division champions, FC Bayern München II, will play next season in the Regionalliga. A win for SV Meppen wasn't good enough as they became the fourth club to suffer relegation. Third-place Ingolstadt will find out their promotion-playoff opponents after the 2. Bundesliga concludes tomorrow. 

Hansa Rostock
1Markus Kolke
18John Verhoek
3Julian Riedel
4Damian Roßbach
7Nico Neidhart
5Simon Rhein
8Bentley Bahn ↩70
20Lukas Scherff
21Nik Omladič ↩90
24Jan Löhmannsröben
26Philip Türpitz ↩70
22Luis Klatte
16Nils Butzen ↪90
23Sven Sonnenberg
6Björn Rother
10Korbinian Vollmann ↪70
11Aaron Herzog ↪70
19Manuel Farrona-Pulido
VfB Lübeck
1Benjamin Gommert
33Soufian Benyamina ↩30
3Sebastian Hertner ↩83
27Nico Rieble
6Elsamed Ramaj ↩72
8Sven Mende
10Yannick Deichmann
13Marvin Thiel
16Ryan Malone
18Thorben-Johannes Deters ↩72
31Mirko Boland
23Ngemba Luyambula
32Lukas Raeder
11Nicolas Hebisch ↪72
2Tim Weissmann ↪83
4Moody Chana
21Tim Kircher ↪72
35Lucas Mika Wolf ↪30

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3. Liga - 1860 München - Waldhof Mannheim3. Liga - Braunschweig - Dortmund II3. Liga - Hallescher - Saarbrücken3. Liga - Kaiserslautern - Freiburg II3. Liga - Meppen - Magdeburg3. Liga - Zwickau - DuisburgBundesliga - Union Berlin - Wolfsburg3. Liga - Türkgücü - Wiesbaden3. Liga - Viktoria Köln - Würzburg3. Liga - Verl - Havelse