Hamburg edge closer to historic relegation
Ten-man Hamburg edged closer to an historic Bundesliga relegation after their 1-0 defeat at Stuttgart, who enjoyed their first win of 2014, in Saturday's basement battle.
Kevin Keegan's ex-club Hamburg are the only team in Germany's top-flight to have never been relegated in the Bundesliga's 50-year history.
The 1983 European Cup winners have had three coaches this season with Mirko Slomka in charge after both Thorsten Fink and ex-Netherlands boss Bert van Marwijk were fired.
Hamburg took Stuttgart's place in the bottom three after Romania midfielder Alexandru Maxim netted the hosts' winner 20 minutes from time.
Guests Hamburg were reduced to ten men when Turkey midfielder Hakan Calhanoglu was shown a second yellow card, and the subsequent, red on 53 minutes.
Hamburg now host fellow strugglers Freiburg on Wednesday.
"The red card was the turning point," said Slomka, who has eight games left to escape the bottom three having succeeded Van Marwijk in February.
"Our ten men did well against their 11, but we couldn't prevent their goal.
"It's a bitter result as we wanted to take everything out of this game. Our full focus is now on Wednesday."
It was Stuttgart's first win in three months and their first in 11 league matches, including a club record eight consecutive defeats.
Having now hauled themselves up to 15th of the 18 teams, Stuttgart, the 2007 champions, are at second-from-bottom Nuremberg on Wednesday, then host second-placed Dortmund.
"I'm happy with the three points, but not the performance," said Stuttgart coach Huub Stevens after only his second game in charge.
"We need more confidence, but that's normal for a team who aren't used to winning."