Hoffenheim rally for 3-3 draw against Dortmund in Bundesliga
Hoffenheim's players celebrate after scoring the 3-3 equalizer during a German Bundesliga soccer match against Borussia Dortmund in Dortmund, Germany, on Feb. 9, 2019. EPA-EFE/FRIEDEMANN VOGEL
Borussia Dortmund's players show their dejection after a German Bundesliga soccer match against Hoffenheim in Dortmund, Germany, on Feb. 9, 2019. EPA-EFE/FRIEDEMANN VOGEL
Hertha Berlin's players celebrate with fans after defeating Borussia Moenchengladbach at Borussia-Park stadium in Moenchengladbach, Germany, on Feb. 9, 2019. EPA-EFE/MORITZ MUELLER
Dortmund, Germany, Feb 9 (efe-epa).- Borussia Dortmund's struggles continued in Bundesliga action here Saturday, with the first-placed club settling for a 3-3 draw after squandering a three-goal lead.
Since their 5-1 rout of Hannover 96 in late January, Dortmund are now winless in three straight matches, including a 1-1 away draw against Eintracht Frankfurt in league play and a 3-3 (4-2) loss on penalties to Werder Bremen in the round of 16 of the German Cup.
Dortmund seemed to have broken out of their recent slump when they took a 2-0 lead with goals over a 12-minute stretch of the first half at Westfalenstadion.
English winger Jadon Sancho opened the scoring in the 32nd minute when he fired a shot that got past goalkeeper Oliver Baumann and went into the far bottom corner.
With two minutes to go before first-half stoppage time, Mario Gotze doubled Dortmund's lead when he collected a deflected ball and tapped it into a wide-open net.
The goal was the attacking midfielder's 50th in the Bundesliga.
The 26-year-old Gotze, who made his Bundesliga debut in Dortmund's 0-0 draw against Mainz on Nov. 21, 2009, scored his first German first-tier goal in his team's 3-1 win over Stuttgart on Aug. 29, 2010. He also played for three seasons for Bayern Munich before returning to Dortmund.
Left back Raphael Guerreiro then appeared to put the game out of reach when he scored into an empty net in the 66th minute.
Hoffenheim, however, was far from finished and managed to score three goals over a 12-minute stretch, with Algerian striker Ishak Belfodil notching a brace.
Belfodil kicked off the comeback in the 75th minute when he seized on a cross by Czech defender Pavel Kaderabek to narrow the gap.
It then took Hoffenheim eight minutes to shrink Dortmund's advantage to one goal, as Kaderabek scored the second goal himself on a header in the 83rd minute.
Belfodil then finished what he started, scoring the equalizer with three minutes to go before second-half stoppage off a cross by Dennis Geiger.
Dortmund remains atop the Bundesliga table with 50 points despite Saturday's stunning collapse but could see its lead over second-placed Bayern Munich shrink to five points if the six-time defending champions defeat Schalke.
Elsewhere, Hertha Berlin surprised third-placed Borussia Monchengladbach 3-0 on the strength of goals by Ivorian forward Salomon Kalou, Slovakian midfielder Ondrej Duda and striker Davie Selke in the 30th, 56th and 76th minutes, respectively.
Leipzig played to a 0-0 draw against Eintracht, while Hannover 96 defeated Nürnberg 2-0.