Bayer Leverkusen grabbed a most fortuitous win over Bundesliga rivals Hoffenheim on Friday after being awarded a goal that never was. With Leverkusen leading 1-0, Stefan Kiessling headed a corner clearly into the outside of the side netting, but after the ball made its way through a hole and into the goal, referee Felix Brych incredibly awarded a goal. Leverkusen went onto win the match and, at least temporarily, go to the top of the Bundesliga table.
In the match at Hoffenheim’s Rhein-Neckar Arena, Leverkusen had taken the lead through a Sidney Sam effort in the 26th minute. With the hosts looking to find a way back into the match, they were denied an equalizer when Kevin Volland’s strike was incorrectly ruled out for offside. But that officiating error paled in comparison with what followed.
With 20 minutes to go, Kiessling rose highest at the near post and directed a header at goal, but had clearly missed the target. The German striker’s disappointed reaction made it clear that he realized that the effort had hit the wrong side of the netting. When the goal was incredibly given, Kiessling’s sheepish, almost embarrassed reaction said it all.
Sven Schipplock’s effort two minutes from time was no more than a consolation for Hoffenheim, who remain in the middle of the table.