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Leverkusen held by Freiburg

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Keenly contestedFreiburg’s Norwegian defender Vegar Hedenstad (centre) vies with Leverkusen’s Turkish defender Omer Toprak (left) as both teams fought out a dull goalless draw.Photo: afp
Keenly contestedFreiburg’s Norwegian defender Vegar Hedenstad (centre) vies with Leverkusen’s Turkish defender Omer Toprak (left) as both teams fought out a dull goalless draw.Photo: afp

Bayer Leverkusen wasted a chance to close the gap on Bundesliga leader Bayern Munich after being held to 0-0 at Freiburg on Saturday.

Andre Schuerrle came closest to scoring for second-place Leverkusen in a hard-fought game, crashing his shot against the post in the 71st minute. Oliver Baumann pulled off a fine save to deny the Germany international shortly afterward.

“We knew we’d have it difficult against Freiburg,” Schuerrle said. “They made it hard for us, put us under a lot of pressure and fought for every ball.”

The draw means Bayern can open an 11-point gap at the top with a win at Stuttgart on Sunday.

Schalke was held to 0-0 at relegation-threatened Augsburg, leaving coach Jens Keller under increasing pressure.

“You can’t be happy with that but you have to live with it,” Keller said. “Augsburg was very aggressive. We didn’t get into the game and didn’t win the ball to get our strikers to score.”

Mainz took full advantage with a 3-0 win at bottom side Greuther Fuerth to move fifth, one point above Schalke. Elsewhere, Borussia Moenchengladbach stretched its unbeaten run to nine games across all competitions with a 2-1 win at home over local rival Fortuna Duesseldorf.

Eintracht Frankfurt consolidated fourth place with a 2-1 win at home over troubled Hoffenheim, which slipped into the relegation zone.

Martin Lanig lifted the ball over Wiese to score in the 35th, after Takashi Inui sprung the offside trap.

Kevin Volland equalized in the 65th, but Stefan Aigner restored Frankfurt’s lead three minutes later after Wiese failed to deal with a corner.AP

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