Champions League - Late drama as Bremen draw
Werder Bremen fought back to claim a 1-1 draw against FC Twente in their Champions League encounter at the De Grolsch Veste.
Theo Janssen gave Twente the lead after 74 minutes, capitalising on confusion in the Bremen defence to lash home the opener at the second attempt, after good work from Marc Janko.
Bremen were only behind for five minutes, as former Twente favourite Marko Arnautovic latched onto a Claudio Pizzaro pass to hammer a half volley past Nikolay Mikhailov from 10 yards.
The game would finish level although Bremen will feel aggrieved after Pizzaro’s injury-time header from Marko Marin’s free kick was chalked off after he was adjudged to have fouled his defender.
The first real attempt on goal came after 11 minutes, Bryan Ruiz showing his ability by shrugging off Philipp Bargfrede and charging towards the Bremen penalty area.
From 20-yards out, he curled a superb left-footed shot towards Tim Wiese’s goal which whistled past the post.
Minutes later it was bad news for the home team though, captain Peter Wisgerhof hobbling off after injuring himself while making a clearance.
The Portugal striker breezed past Twente defender Douglas before stretching out his left foot to fire a low shot at goal, which Mikhailov did well to turn behind for a corner.
It was then the turn of the visitors to suffer an injury blow, with Wiese being forced off after injuring his knee. The German international went down under no challenge and seemed in agony before being replaced by Sebastian Mielitz.
It was almost a nightmare start for Mielitz, who fumbled a Janko shot and had to react quickly to make sure Denny Landzaat could not tap home the loose ball.
Werder Bremen started the second half the brighter of the two teams, although both sides struggled to trouble either goalkeeper.
The breakthrough finally arrived in the 75th minute, the influential Janssen putting Twente within touching-distance of three points.
The German team failed to deal with a cross from the left, allowing Janko to control the ball and Janssen fired a shot at Mielitz. The youngster reacted well to keep out the first effort, but there was nothing he could do about the second, as the Dutch midfield thundered his close-range effort into the net from six yards.
But Bremen were only behind for five minutes with former Twente forward Arnautovic making a telling contribution on his return to the club.
The Austrian substitute played a wonderful one-two with Pizarro and attempted to hit a volley as the Peruvian’s pass came over his shoulder. He made a mess of his first attempt, but he made no mistake with his second, leaving Mikhailov helpless as he leathered the shot home.
And Thomas Schaaf’s men could have gone home will all three points in injury time with Pizarro flicking Marin’s cross over the line but it was not to be for Bremen, who were perplexed to hear the referee’s whistle.