1. FC Union Berlin snatched a 2-2 draw at the Volksparkstadion in Hamburg after Suleiman Abdullahi's 90th-minute equaliser.
Urs Fischer's team led at the break through Joshua Mees' third goal in two games, but Hamburg hit back in the second half to turn around the score through Aaron Hunt and Lewis Holtby.
But Union's never-say-die attitude pulled the side through in northern Germany, with Abdullahi popping up to score his first goal for the club since joining in the summer.
Hamburg: Pollersbeck; Santos, Sakai, van Drongelen, Lacroix; Holtby, Hunt (Bates 73), Mangala (Moritz 86); Jatta, Hwang, Narey (Arp 79)
Union Berlin: Gikiewicz; Trimmel, Friedrich, Hübner, Reichel; Schmiedebach, Prömel; Abdullahi, Mees (Hedlund 45), Hartel (Gogia 75); Polter (Andersson 63)
As early as the first minute, Union Berlin asserted pressure on the Hamburg defence. Grischa Prömel, who returned from suspension, won the second ball in midfield, finding Sebastian Polter but the Union striker could not get control of the ball on a slippy surface. Hannes Wolf’s men looked intent on taking the lead in front of their home supporters and enjoyed their best period of the half. A shot from Lewis Holtby, gathered comfortably by Rafal Gikiewicz, was the closest the northern Germans came to finding the net. Instead, the visitors from Köpenick struck first on the counter-attack — Mees working industriously to put Leo Lacroix under pressure, steal the ball and ruthlessly fire past Julian Pollersbeck. Two chances fell to Hartel at the midway point of the first 45 minutes, but the Union number 7 was unfortunate on both occasions. Up until stoppage time, Hamburg rarely carved open the Union defence, the Berliners inspired by outstanding performances across the backline. Aaron Hunt could have levelled on the whistle, but he struck wide of the target.
Fischer made one change at the break with Simon Hedlund replacing Mees who had taken a knock in the first half. Though the Berliners held out for the first 10 minutes, Hamburg were on top. Wolf’s side came out of the traps strongly and took more risks to find the equaliser. Eventually, Union succumbed to the pressure and Hunt sweeped home from close range after the away side failed to clear. Holtby added a second on 65 minutes, finishing the rebound after Gikiewicz saved an initial effort from Bakary Jatta. While Union had to withstand further pressure from the home side, Fischer’s side became stronger in the final 10 minutes and put Hamburg on the back foot. As the game reached its climax, Florian Hübner’s header sent Abdullahi in on goal and the Nigerian striker held his nerve to drill the ball past Pollersbeck.
Union's eighth away game without defeat — and 16 in total in the 2.Bundesliga — keeps Fischer's side in third place ahead of Saturday's visit of Darmstadt at the Stadion An der Alten Försterei.