Both teams had the lead and lost it, in what was a quite incredible game between Union Berlin and 1. FC Nürnberg on Saturday afternoon.
Union's topsy-turvy form took a positive turn last weekend with a very impressive win over 1. FC Heidenheim. Sascha Lewandowski made just one change from that side, as Benjamin Kessel made way for Christopher Trimmel. Nürnberg came into the game hoping to get a win on the board after four draws in their last five games. René Weiler opted for the same Nürnberg team that drew with Karlsruher SC last time out, in a big to pull his side back up the table.
Union unlucky not to be ahead
Despite the recent results of the two sides, it was the visitors who took the lead. A wonderful, low cross from Alessandro Schöpf was drilled into the area and found the heels of Hanno Behrens. The midfielder flicked the ball on to the back post and got the touch he needed off the unfortunately Toni Leistner, who directed it past his own goalkeeper.
Union pushed for an equaliser and after Schöpf passed up a great opportunity to double their lead, the hosts got back on level terms. Bobby Wood was the man to restore parity following a shot from Trimmel. Thorsten Kirschbaum couldn't hold the fairly tame effort and the American forward pounced to tap in. Leistner almost turned from zero to hero, though his header went narrowly wide of the mark; he knew that he should have made more of it, however.
The hosts were now the better side by far and should have gone into the break with the lead. Steven Skrzybski had a spectacular drive topped onto the top of the bar by Kirschbaum, before the resulting corner saw Dave Bulthuis almost chest the ball into his own net.
Goalfest in the second half
Skrzybski wasn't down-heartened by the super save and soon got his reward for his pin-point long-range efforts. After a driving run from Bobby Wood, the American eventually set the ball up for his strike partner. A touch to take it out of his feet and another to send the ball sailing straight into the top corner. Skrzybski couldn't have asked for a better strike.
Two became three just a matter of moments later. After Eroll Zejnullahu's shot was tipped acrobatically over by Kirschbaum, the resulting corner saw Roberto Puncec head home off the bar. Trimmel's cross was perfectly flighted for the Croatian defender to stride onto the ball and bullet it past the helpless Nürnberg stopper.
That wasn't the end of the scoring in a succession of second-half minutes. Schöpf turned from goalscorer to goal-getter, as he finished from close range to give his side hope once more. The tricky attacker was set free by Georg Margreitter, and made no mistake with Daniel Haas charging him down.
Incredibly, after looking set for a comfortable win, Union blew their two-goal lead. Danny Blum had only just came on the pitch when his free-kick arrowed up and over the wall before landing on the crossbar. The ball was kept alive in the dangerzone and Patrick Erras somehow managed to scramble the ball past everyone and into the bottom corner.
Late chances fell the way of both teams but Union and Nürnberg managed to hang on, in what was a game that neither deserved to lose or win. The pair remain in the bottom half of the table, but know they are capable of so much more.