Cologne hold Schalke to 2-2 draw in German Bundesliga

Source: Xinhua| 2018-04-23 11:30:01|Editor: ZD
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BERLIN, April 22 (Xinhua) -- Cologne are on the brink of relegation after sharing the spoils with Schalke, at the close of the 31st round of matches in the Bundesliga on Sunday.

The "Billy Goats" came back from two goals down to secure a 2-2 draw against league runners up Schalke.

Cologne needed a victory to increase their chances of staying up. However, their hopes were turned into doubts as the "Royal Blues" broke the deadlock after just four minutes when Yevhen Konoplyank had all time and space to provide Bree Embolo with the assist.

Konoplyank remained in the thick of things as the Ukrainian international raced clear on the right wing to beat Cologne goalkeeper Timo Horn in the 23rd minute.

Despite conceding two early goals, Cologne reduced the deficit out of the blue as Leonardo Bittencourt made it 2-1 from close range three minutes later.

After the restart, Schalke remained in control but were unable to make the most of their promising chances. Cologne punished Schalke's wastefulness in the closing period of the encounter as Marcel Risse's vicious 25-meter free kick ensured that both teams would leave with a point.

With the result, last placed Cologne are eight points away from safety. "We gave everything to the last second. We are not relegated yet, we still have to win three times," Cologne's coach Stefan Ruthenbeck said.

"The way we played in the first half was good but you cannot play more arrogantly. We squandered too many scoring opportunities," Schalke's coach Domenico Tedesco said.

Elsewhere, Augsburg ended their four-game winless streak and secured their top-flight status for next season after cruising past Mainz 2-0.