Paderborn were relegated from the Bundesliga after falling to a 1-0 defeat at Union Berlin, with a Ben Zolinski own-goal sending the East Westphalians down.
Union Berlin 1-0 Paderborn
Goals: 1-0 Zolinski (o.g. 27')
In a bid to keep their slender survival hopes alive, Paderborn coach Steffen Baumgart tried a new tactical approach with a three-man defence, but an injury to Christian Strohdiek after just 14 minutes prompted a premature rethink. As the Paderborn defence regrouped, Marius Bülter headed the first attempt of the game wide of Leopold Zingerle's goal. Even the most organised of defences struggles when faced with a Christopher Trimmel set-piece, though, and Paderborn's was no exception in the 27th minute when the Union defender's delivery went in via a deflection off the head of Zolinski. Union's defence showed how it should be done throughout the first half, on the other hand, with Marvin Friedrich winning all six of his challenges and Keven Schlotterbeck beaten only once from seven.
Trimmel showed he is a useful defender, too, as he denied Paderborn a promising opening down the right, blocking a pass that could have put Zolinski through on goal. Union were having to do more and more defending as Paderborn pushed for an unlikely lifeline, but despite the guests' prolonged efforts, the best chance of the second half fell at the other end, where Robert Andrich's shot struck the inside of the post and Sebastian Andersson could only turn the rebound into the side-netting. With eight points separating them from safety, and only two games left to play, Paderborn's relegation after just one season in the top flight was confirmed, while Union will be staying in the top flight for another year thanks to these three points.
- Paderborn coach Baumgart made five changes to his starting XI following the 5-1 defeat to Werder Bremen – the most changes he has made from one game to the next this season.
- Trimmel has now supplied set-piece deliveries leading to 12 goals this season (four free-kicks, eight corners).
- Union were promoted behind Paderborn last season via the promotion-relegation play-off. Now, in their maiden top-flight campaign, they have 18 more points than the basement-dwellers.
- Paderborn midfielder Gjasula has 17 yellow cards this season - a new league record after overtaking former Duisburg defender Tomasz Hajto at the weekend.
Watch: Marcus Ingvartsen on why Union can be proud of survival
Union: Gikiewicz - Trimmel (c), Friedrich, Schlotterbeck, Reichel - Gentner (Kroos 77'), Andrich (Schmiedebach 88') - Ingvartsen, Prömel, Bülter (Mees 61') – Andersson (Ujah 88')
Unused subs: Nicolas, Subotic, Malli, Hübner, Abdullahi
Out: Becker (thigh), Gogia (match fitness), Lenz (ankle), Polter (not included), Ryerson (knee)
Coach: Urs Fischer
Paderborn: Zingerle - Strohdiek (c) (Dräger 14'), Hünemeier, Collins - Antwi-Adjei, Ritter, Gjasula, Vasiliadis, Holtmann (Pröger 76') - Zolinski (Evans 76'), Mamba (Srbeny 66')
Unused subs: Huth, Rumpf, Fridjonsson, Jans, Jastrzembski
Out: Kilian (thigh), Michel (suspended), Sabiri (suspended), Schonlau (Achilles tendon)
Coach: Steffen Baumgart
Watch: Hünemeier: "It's disappointing, a big blow"