Hamburg beats Bremen 2-0 in northern derby
Berlin: Hamburger SV needed late goals to defeat Werder Bremen 2-0 in the Bundesliga's 101st northern derby on Sunday, moving above its bitter rival and out of the relegation zone.
Hamburg substitute Artjoms Rudnevs broke the deadlock in the 84th minute when he reacted first and prodded the ball home from three meters after Bremen defender Assani Lukimya could only head on a long throw-in from Philipp Goetz.
There was a touch of fortune about the second goal, too, which came in injury time.
Pierre-Michel Lasogga, who was one of four Hamburg players through on goal, crossed for Tolgay Arslan, who struck the post from close range with the goal at his mercy. The ball rebounded in front of the goal-line past Bremen goalkeeper Raphael Wolf, who inadvertently knocked the ball in as he tried to catch it.
"The points are incredibly important for us," said Hamburg midfielder Rafael van der Vaart, whose side moved one point above Borussia Dortmund, now in the relegation play-off places.
It had been a hard-fought battle with few scoring chances.
Hamburg midfielder Mohamed Gouaida, who was promoted from the reserve side for his Bundesliga debut, tested Wolf with a stinging shot early on.
Bremen midfielder Zlatko Junuzovic fired straight at Jaroslav Drobny at the other end, also in the first half.
Drobny made a good save to deny Santiago Garcia's header from Junuzovic's cross before Rudnevs scored.
Bremen finished with 10 men as Clemens Fritz earned his second yellow card in the final minute.
The visitors clearly missed their injured top-scorer Franco di Santo and slumped to their first defeat under new coach Viktor Skripnik.
Bottom side Stuttgart was hosting Augsburg later.