Bundesliga last day roundup: Stuttgart face relegation playoff as Augsburg beat the drop

Bundesliga last day roundup: Stuttgart face relegation playoff as Augsburg beat the drop
Stuttgart will have to play a relegation playoff
Stuttgart will have to play a relegation playoff
There was plenty of drama on the Bundesliga's last day. Aside from the headline title-race action, Stuttgart's draw with Hoffenheim meant they couldn't escape the bottom three in time. Augsburg, despite losing, stayed out of trouble while Eintracht and rock-bottom Hertha ended their seasons with wins.

Stuttgart 1 Hoffenheim 1

Stuttgart will face Hamburger SV or Heidenheim in the 2022/23 Bundesliga relegation play-off match – as a result of Bochum's 3-0 victory over Bayer Leverkusen – after a 1-1 draw with Hoffenheim at the Mercedes-Benz Arena.

Seeking to extend their unbeaten home record over Hoffenheim to six matches and give themselves a good chance of avoiding automatic relegation, Stuttgart began cautiously within the opening exchanges, despite the revelation that bottom-three rivals Bochum had already gone in front against 10-man Bayer Leverkusen to plunge the Swabians into 16th place.

Now desperate for a lead of their own, marauding defender Josha Vagnoman could only disappointingly fire Wataru Endo’s delightful through-ball over the bar, priming the teams to go in goalless at half-time.

With Schalke going back on level terms against RB Leipzig early in the second half, another goal for Schalke would leave Stuttgart in the final automatic relegation position, but head coach Sebastian Hoeness surprisingly refused to turn to his substitutes’ bench.

Meanwhile, his opposite number Pellegrino Matarazzo introduced no less than four new faces into the game, heightening the palpable tension around the Mercedes-Benz Arena more than ever.

Chris Fuhrich thought he had reduced those nerves shortly after the hour-mark, but he could only turn away in disbelief as Oliver Baumann was up to the challenge, denying the German midfielder with a spectacular point-blank save.

And with less than a quarter-hour remaining, Stuttgart were eventually made to pay for their earlier missed opportunities, as Ihlas Bebou instinctively got ahead of his marker to powerfully head Hoffenheim into the lead.

Moments after Enzo Millot had struck the woodwork, Stuttgart finally had their equaliser in the 80th minute, as fellow second-half substitute Tiago Tomas controversially fired beyond Baumann, despite it appearing that the on-loan Sporting forward had a hand full of Robert Skov’s shirt in the build-up.

And the news got even better for Stuttgart, as Schalke went 3-2 down at Leipzig to give the Swabians an extra margin of error against automatic demotion, though Bochum’s victory saw Stuttgart consigned to a 16th-placed finish.

Despite suffering only one defeat in eight matches since Sebastian Hoeness's appointment at the beginning of April, Stuttgart now face the daunting prospect of a two-match play-off to try and keep their status as a Bundesliga club intact for a fourth successive season.

Meanwhile, Hoffenheim conclude a disappointing 2022/23 campaign with their lowest points tally (36) in over a decade.

Flashscore Man of the Match: Tiago Tomas (Stuttgart)

See all the match stats here.

B. Monchengladbach 2 Augsburg 0

Ten-man Augsburg were spared the agony of a relegation play-off despite a 2-0 defeat at the hands of Borussia Monchengladbach, who in turn avoided their lowest finish in 12 Bundesliga seasons.

Augsburg’s quest to avoid a first top-flight relegation in six years couldn’t have begun on a worse note, as Gladbach’s Luca Netz tapped home following an inch-perfect assist from Jonas Hofmann to give his side the perfect start.

Monchengladbach took an early lead

That fourth-minute opener obviously gave the hosts confidence, with successive close-call opportunities falling their way shortly after, but Daniel Farke’s men spurned several good chances.

Having conceded at least three goals in all but one of their last nine Bundesliga losses, Enrico Maassen’s men looked for a response, but could only do so much against an inspired Fohlen outfit keen to give Farke a fitting farewell in what was expected to be his final match in the club’s dugout.

With half-time fast-time approaching, Gladbach doubled their advantage, Hofmann this time turning goalscorer as he let a clean low drive fly after combining brilliantly with Lars Stindl on the break.

Unfortunately for Augsburg, the 2-0 deficit at the interval was accompanied by a straight red card for Robert Gumny, who cynically took Marcus Thuram down on the edge of the penalty area as the last man standing.

As expected, it didn’t get any easier for the depleted visitors after the break, as the hosts continued to dominate, much to the pleasure of the jam-packed Borussia-Park. Maassen’s ten-man side functioned better than they did at full strength, but it was still not enough to cause their opponents any real problems.

Ultimately, Augsburg succumbed to a sixth Bundesliga loss in 11 games, although results elsewhere retain their status amongst the elite.

Meanwhile, the hosts triumph for the first time in three fixtures, a small positive as their worst Bundesliga season since gaining promotion back to the top flight in 2010/11.

Flashscore Man of the Match: Jonas Hofmann (Borussia Monchengladbach)

See all the match stats here.

Final Bundesliga standings

Eintracht Frankfurt 2 Freiburg 1

Eintracht Frankfurt came from behind to beat Freiburg 2-1 on the final day of the Bundesliga season, meaning the visitors have won just one of the last 12 matches between the side, on a day that saw them powerless in missing out on a Champions League qualification berth thanks to events over in Berlin.

Both teams found themselves relying on others slipping up if they were to fulfil their respective ambitions on the final day, but still got off to a lively start, as Ritsu Doan did brilliantly to tee up Philipp Lienhart for a chance that was wasted, while Jesper Lindstrom tested Mark Flekken mere moments later.

Even though the contest soon quietened down, Randal Kolo Muani almost broke through following some lovely link-up play with Daichi Kamada but slipped at the worst possible moment.

As the game came to life again, Matthias Ginter was involved at both ends as the centre-back saw his header saved, before getting back to make a superb block when Mario Gotze jinked past Lienhart and let off a shot.

But Freiburg eventually made their breakthrough as the half-time whistle loomed, when Tuta got his head on Roland Sallai’s cross but could only direct it towards Vincenzo Grifo, who nodded in his 15th Bundesliga goal of the season to spark celebrations that were amplified by the fact that Union Berlin were still drawing at home to Werder Bremen.

Freiburg took the lead but couldn't hold on

Christian Streich’s side entered the contest with the league’s joint-third-best defensive record and showed that same solidity after the break, going largely untroubled while Yannik Keitel saw a header comfortably saved at the other end.

Frankfurt were seemingly running out of ideas to capitalise on results elsewhere going their way, with some harmless balls being aimlessly floated towards Flekken. Kolo Muani had waited patiently during that time but was denied by an instinctive Flekken save and headed the follow-up over when a chance eventually came.

Just as Union denied Freiburg Champions League football with a winner of their own, Kolo Muani returned to rob them of their victory with an outstanding header to spark a wild climax.

Junior Dina Ebimbe then popped up when the ball found its way to the back post in the 91st minute and finished to take Frankfurt up to seventh with just the second win in their last 13 Bundesliga matches.

Meanwhile, even though the Freiburg missed out on the Champions League, they will play on the continent in back-to-back seasons for the first time in their history.

Flashscore Man of the Match: Randal Kolo Muani (Eintracht Frankfurt)

See all the match stats here.

Wolfsburg 1 Hertha Berlin 2

Hertha Berlin youngsters Tjark Ernst and Ibrahim Maza put in brilliant performances to help their side carve out an unexpected 2-1 victory over Wolfsburg, which crucially saw the visitors miss out on the last Bundesliga European spot. 

Wolfsburg were aiming to leapfrog Bayer Leverkusen into sixth place and guarantee themselves European football for next season. In order to do this, they needed a positive result against an already relegated Hertha Berlin side with only one win in their last 11 league games.

During that time Berlin had conceded an average of three goals a game and it was easy to see why. Straight away when Jakub Kaminski combined with Yannick Gerhardt to carve open the visitor's defence and find the back of the net with a neat finish into the bottom corner.

In the reverse fixture earlier in the season, Wolfsburg had put Berlin through a 5-0 drumming and they looked on course to do the same again had it not been for Jonas Wind remarkably putting the ball wide from a few yards out.

The one shining light for the visitors in the first half was the debutant goalkeeper Ernst, who made a string of fine saves to keep his side in it, the best denying Patrick Wimmer from the edge of the area.

The hosts were made to pay for missing so many chances in the first half when Berlin stunned Volkswagen Arena into silence with an equaliser just before the hour mark.

Hertha Berlin had something to smile about despite being relegated

A devastating counter-attack culminated in Lucas Tousart picking out Maza, who showed great composure to find the bottom corner and score his first senior goal for the club.

The visitors then turned the game on its head courtesy of a Marco Richter wonder strike from the edge of the area that flew into the top corner to make it 2-1, leaving the hosts a mere 20 minutes to find a way back into the game.

Mattias Svanberg came closest to finding a late equaliser for Wolfsburg, however, the substitute was unbelievably denied by Ernst from close range as the young goalkeeper capped off a brilliant display to see the game finish 2-1. Meaning Wolfsburg miss out on European football, as Hertha Berlin bow out of the top flight on a high note.

Flashscore Man of the Match: Tjark Ernst (Hertha Berlin)

See all the match stats here.

Full round of Bundesliga results


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