Borussia Dortmund’s Bundesliga challenge took another telling blow after they were pegged back by Hannover in a 1-1 draw on Sunday.
The defending champions could not build on their encouraging 1-1 draw at Manchester City in the Champions League on Wednesday, as they were held to another disappointing domestic result to leave their hopes of a third straight title in jeopardy after only seven games.
Robert Lewandowski opened the scoring with a tap in on 26 minutes, but intense Hannover pressure in the second half was rewarded with the equaliser from Mame Biram Diouf in the 86th minute.
Dortmund now face a nine-point gap to leaders Bayern Munich, while Hannover stretched their unbeaten home record to 22 matches.
Borussia Moenchengladbach won for the first time in seven matches and handed second-placed Eintracht Frankfurt their first defeat of the Bundesliga season in a 2-0 result.
Juan Arango unleashed a scorching 30-yard strike in the eighth minute that crept in off the underside of the crossbar before off-season signing Luuk de Jong doubled Gladbach’s advantage 16 minutes later.
Eintracht dominated for much of the match but could not break through and now trail Bayern by five points.
In the other match, Vedad Ibisevic and Stefan Kiessling exchanged braces for Stuttgart and Bayer Leverkusen respectively in a 2-2 draw.
Kiessling opened the scoring in the 13th minute with a scrappy goal and eventually restored parity in the 59th with a header either side of an Ibisevic penalty and tap in.