Wolfsburg - Hamburger SV wrapped Matchday 15's action by snatching a 1-1 draw and a hard-earned point at northern rivals VfL Wolfsburg in the Volkswagen Arena.
HSV strike first
Maximilian Beister put Hamburg ahead in a closely contested first 45 minutes, but they were pegged back in the second half by Simon Kjaer. Despite dominating their guests after the equaliser, a combination of luck and poor finishing ensured HSV left with a share of the spoils.
Both teams sought to go on the attack from early on, with the hosts enjoying the larger share of possession but half-chances falling in both penalty areas. The Wolves' Diego had his free-kick denied after five minutes by HSV's defensive wall, before teammate Makoto Hasebe volleyed over from distance. At the other end, Dennis Diekmeier gave Wolfsburg a warning, firing over from around 25 yards when a pass might have been the better option.
Wolfsburg didn't look entirely comfortable at the back and Hamburg's Norwegian midfielder Per Skjelbred, forced a good challenge from Naldo, before free-kick specialist Dennis Aogo whipped an effort just wide of goal with Diego Benaglio beaten. The pressure paid off, however, and just moments later, Beister crowned his recent improvement in form with the opening goal, coolly slotting home from Artjoms Rudnev's classy through-ball.
Wolfsburg push hard
However, Wolfsburg reacted well to the setback. Diego twice went close with efforts at Rene Adler's goal, before Naldo's free-kick was denied by the German international's fingertip save. The first half then ended with a flourish, as Adler did well to save Vieirinha's rocket, before Milan Badelj missed a superb opportunity to double HSV's lead, firing wide of the target with an angled drive..
After a quiet opening ten minutes in the second half, the game sparked into life again with when Beister spurned another glorious chance for the away side, failing to get a clean connection on the ball with just Benaglio to beat. Similarly, at the other end of the pitch, Dutch striker Bas Dost's finishing also let him down at the crucial moment when he headed straight into Adler's arms with not a defender in sight.
Kjaer levels matters
Wolfsburg now began throwing bodies forward in search of an equaliser, and it soon began to disconcert the previously solid-looking HSV defence. Adler managed to clear a deflected cross over the bar after 68 minutes, but it was merely a temporary reprieve, as just seconds later, Danish defender Kjaer made use of his height to glance home a well-guided header from Marcel Schäfer's cross, his first goal of the season.
The goal gave Lorenz-Günther Köstner's side a visible lift, and they soon went about pushing for a second against an away side dropping deeper and deeper. The lively Vieirinha was desperately unlucky to see his shot come back off the post, before Schäfer could only hit the side netting from a sharp angle and Dost headed a corner over the bar. Wolfsburg's probing failed to reap further dividends, substitute Srdjan Lakic missing their last opportunity when his header was comfortably claimed by Adler.
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