Leverkusen - Eintracht Braunschweig's survival bid was given fresh impetus after Ken Reichel's brilliant volley gave them a share of the spoils against a below-par Bayer 04 Leverkusen at the BayArena.
Bayer’s midweek win in Augsburg was their first league victory in nine games in all competitions, and the hosts began the encounter determined to build on the result, with Andres Guardado - playing in midfield - flashing a half-volley just wide of the post and Gonzalo Castro sending a free-kick just off target. Braunschweig then got to grips with their defensive task, however, and up until the break shackled the home side completely.
If the first half had been uneventful, the second period began in a manner that was anything but. The Lions went in front in spectacular fashion when left-back Reichel thundered in a brilliant first-time volley from a tight angle, but their perfect start was soured when Marcel Correia needlessly handled in the box, allowing Stefan Kießling to equalise from the penalty spot.
The visitors would have been disappointed to concede their advantage so meekly, but their display thereafter betrayed all the fighting qualities that ensure they still have a fighting chance of beating the drop. They might even have won it had Bernd Leno not saved well from Mirko Boland, but the point - their fourth against Bayer this season - will be welcome reward for Torsten Lieberknecht’s men.
Line-ups and statistics