Hoffenheim failed to make use of a two-man advantage in gaining just a draw at home against Schalke but will spend the winter break as Bundesliga leaders.
Gerald Asamoah gave Schalke the lead in the 40th minute but Hoffenheim responded in the 72nd minute with a goal by Selim Teber.
Schalke finished the game with just nine players as Jermaine Jones was given his second yellow card in the 57th minute and Orlando Engelaar was dismissed in the 81st.
Hoffenheim bounced back well from their loss at Bayern Munich last week to finish the first half of the Bundesliga campaign with 35 points – level on points but with superior goal difference to Bayern.
Ralf Rangnick’s team are the first promoted side in Bundesliga history to finish the first half of the season top of the table.
In a showdown between the league’s best attack in Hoffenheim against the best defence of Schalke, the visitors started the game on the front foot and had the first chance after just three minutes with Asamoah blasting well off-target from just six yards out.
Schalke goalkeeper Manuel Neuer was called on 10 minutes later, diving to his left to save Sejad Salihovic’s curling …Read more »