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 Posted by ESPN Staff
Feb 14, 2009

Voronin's Bayern double takes Hertha to the top

Hertha Berlin returned to the top of the Bundesliga for the first time in more than two years after Andriy Voronin struck twice to give them a 2-1 home win over Bayern Munich on Saturday.

With five teams separated by only four points, the title race is wide open after previous leaders Hoffenheim were thrashed 4-1 at home by Bayer Leverkusen on Friday.

Bayern are in third spot on 38 points with Hoffenheim second on 39, a point behind Hertha. Hamburg, who are level on 36 points with fourth-placed Leverkusen, could move ahead of Bayern with a home win over lowly Arminia Bielefeld on Sunday.

Hertha, missing injured striker Marko Pantelic, took the lead through Ukraine forward Voronin near the end of the first half before Miroslav Klose levelled just past the hour.

Voronin bagged the winner -- his third goal in two matches - when he took a pass from Raffael and slotted past Bayern goalkeeper Michael Rensing 13 minutes from time.

Bayern's former germany coach Juergen Klinsmann, returning to the Olympic stadium for the first time since the 2006 World Cup, had warned that his team was ready to top the table.

Instead, it was Hertha coach Lucien Favre enjoying the moment and telling reporters: "I am very satisfied. A win against Bayern - I think that will do for today. We played as a team and the 2-1 win is deserved."

The home side concentrated on defending early on with Josip Simunic glued to Bayern striker Luca Toni and visiting French playmaker Franck Ribery kept well away from the box.

Hertha slowly grew in confidence and Voronin, on loan from Liverpool, broke the deadlock in the 38th with a well-taken header after Patrick Ebert had found the striker unmarked on the far post with Bayern defender Christian Lell largely to blame.

Bayern looked toothless in attack, especially after Toni went off with an ankle problem, but Klose mamaged to level for the champions in the 61st with his ninth goal of the season.

Hertha keeper Jaroslav Drobny did well to deny Lucio from 20 metres, then blocked two efforts by Bastian Schweinsteiger on the rebound but was helpless when the ball fell to the Germany striker to score with a close-range header.

Bayern's celebrations were short-lived, though, as Voronin struck again, hitting his second when he took a pass from Raffael, sprinted down the right and slotted past Rensing to the delight of the home fans in the 74,000 crowd.

"We are disappointed and angry," Klinsmann told reporters. "We wanted to get three points here. But now we just have to continue our good run that was interrupted by (defeats against) Hamburg (on Jan. 30) and Berlin."

Stuttgart squandered a two-goal lead but scored a late equaliser through Thomas Hitzlsperger to rescue a 3-3 draw against a gutsy Hanover side.

Stuttgart, in seventh place, have yet to lose under coach Markus Babbel, who took over in November.

Schalke lost 2-1 at Bochum, piling further misery on their troubled season as they stay in eighth spot, while Wolfsburg rose to sixth after a 2-0 win at Eintracht Frankfurt.

Werder Bremen's poor run continued with a 1-1 home draw against bottom side Borussia Moenchengladbach, having grabbed the lead through Claudio Pizarro 13 minutes from time only for Michael Bradley to equalise three minutes later.

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