BERLIN: Borussia Dortmund and VfL Wolfsburg clinched Champions League qualification from the Bundesliga on Sunday.
Dortmund won 3-1 at Mainz 05 and VfL Wolfsburg drew 2-2 at RB Leipzig to ensure both sides will finish among the top four to qualify for Europe’s top club competition.
Leipzig, who secured second place behind champions Bayern Munich, were already assured of playing in the Champions League next season.
Leipzig looked tired in their first game after losing the German Cup final to Dortmund on Thursday, but fought back with goals from Justin Kluivert and a penalty from Marcel Sabitzer after Maximilian Philipp scored two fine goals in the first half for Wolfsburg.
The draw left Wolfsburg fourth, but level on 61 points with Dortmund in third.
Dortmund’s Raphael Guerreiro opened the scoring in Mainz in the 23rd minute, Marco Reus converted from close range in the 42nd, and substitute Julian Brandt sealed the visitors win in the 80th. Mainz striker Robin Quaison claimed his 30th Bundesliga goal by netting a 90th-minute penalty.
Qualifying for Europe caps a remarkable turnaround by Dortmund in the last six weeks.
They were fifth and seven points from the Champions League places after losing 2-1 to Eintracht Frankfurt in early April. Dortmund have since won all six league games to guarantee a place next season in the group stages of the Champions League.
Eintracht slumped once coach Adi Hutter announced he was leaving for Borussia Moenchengladbach next season. Their 4-3 loss at already-relegated Schalke 04 on Saturday was their third defeat in five games.
Published in Dawn, May 18th, 2021