Gladbach held at home
Title hopefuls frustrated by Hamburg
Last Updated: 24/02/12 9:59pm
Mike Hanke: Put Gladbach ahead before Arslan's second-half equaliser
Hamburg held Borussia Monchengladbach to a 1-1 draw on Friday night to put a dent in their Bundesliga title hopes.
Mike Hanke gave the Foals the lead on the stroke of half-time, but Tolgay Arslan levelled early in the second half to earn Thorsten Fink's side a point.
The draw gives Gladbach a two-point advantage over third-placed Bayern Munich, who play Schalke on Sunday, while they trail league leaders Borussia Dortmund, who are also in action on Sunday, by two points.
Gladbach's counter-attacking football is earning them fans throughout Germany and Fink had clearly done his homework to try and reduce their threat.
Hamburg rarely attacked in the first half, preferring instead to keep men behind the ball and not leave any gaps open.
The home side accepted the invitation to attack and nearly went in front in the 21st minute when Dennis Diekmeier cleared off the line from Roel Brouwers' shot.
Seven minutes later, Igor de Camargo wasted the next best chance for the hosts when he failed to beat Jaroslav Drobny in a one-on-one situation.
The home side took a deserved lead in the last minute of the first half with Hanke confirming his good recent form by heading Juan Arango's free-kick past Drobny, although he appeared to be in an offside position.
Hamburg had to change their tactics in the second half and they reaped their rewards just 10 minutes in when Arslan levelled.
Paolo Guerrero headed the ball across to his team-mate, who scored his first Bundesliga goal from close range.
Hanke sent a neat backheel wide midway through the second half, but Hamburg were looking increasingly confident, forcing Gladbach to end deep.
In the end, the home side will have been equally happy with the draw as Hamburg, who move up to eighth in the table as a result.