Following their shock 3-0 win over Hoffenheim last week, Hamburg started brightly and pressed their hosts high up the pitch in an effort to establish early superiority. However, Freiburg created more openings in the first 45 minutes, with Nils Petersen and Christian Günter going close from tight angles. Jann-Fiete Arp had the best opportunity for Hamburg after intercepting a back pass, but his attempted lob from out wide missed the target.
Yoric Ravet had the ball in the back of the net early in the second period with a crisp finish, but his effort was chalked off for offside. It remained a tense affair, with both sets of players aware of how a victory - and indeed a defeat - could affect their side, and while there were numerous full-blooded challenges in the middle of the pitch, the necessary guile in the final third was invariably lacking.