- Hoffenheim came from behind to beat Ingolstadt 2-1.
- Julian Nagelsmann's team have a six-point cushion on 17th.
- A win against Hannover next Saturday would guarantee their survival.
TSG 1899 Hoffenheim moved a step closer to mathematical safety after coming from behind to beat FC Ingolstadt 04 2-1 on Matchday 32.
Despite already being guaranteed a place in next season's Bundesliga, promoted Ingolstadt showed no sign of doing relegation-threatened Hoffenheim any favours. With Hoffenheim defender Ermin Bicakcic off the pitch receiving treatment following a clash of heads, Die Schanzer took the lead in the 16th minute when the returning Stefan Lex controlled from Marvin Matip and lashed beyond Oliver Baumann. Hoffenheim continued to wobble defensively, but got themselves back on level terms nine minutes before the break thanks to Mark Uth's seventh Bundesliga goal of the campaign.
Hoffenheim seized the initiative after the restart, but could not find a way past the excellent Örjan Nyland in the Ingolstadt goal. The Norwegian custodian saved a penalty from Leicester City FC loanee Andrej Kramaric in the 52nd minute, before throwing up a strong hand to deny Uth his second of the afternoon moments later. Ingolstadt heeded the warning and went on the offensive, with Baumann pulling off two excellent saves to thwart Pascal Groß and Alfredo Morales, but Hoffenheim had the final say as substitute Nadiem Amiri turned home Kevin Volland's cross six to secure a vital win in the context of the relegation battle.
Man of the match
Although on the losing side, Nyland made a string of excellent saves to keep the scoreline respectable and will almost certainly have done enough to keep his place in the Ingolstadt starting line-up for another week ahead of Ramazan Özcan.
Hoffenheim are now four points clear of the bottom three, and will be safe if they beat relegated Hannover 96 on the penultimate weekend of the season.
- Lex scored his second goal of the season and first away from home.
- Matip registered his first Bundesliga assist since 1 April 2006.
- Uth has scored three goals in his last four matches.
- Amiri netted his first goal since Matchday 29.
Hoffenheim: Baumann - Rudy (Kaderabek 62'), Bicakcic, Süle, Toljan - Polanski (c) (Schwegler 74'), Strobl - Uth, Ochs (Amiri 61'), Vollans - Kramaric
Coach: Julian Nagelsmann
Ingolstadt: Nyland - da Costa (Suttner 42'), M. Matip (c), Hübner, Bauer - Roger, Groß, Morales - Hartmann (Leckie 81'), Lezcano (Cohen 66'), Lex
Coach: Ralph Hasenhüttl