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Di Santo's late penalty enough for Bremen to beat Hamburg 1-0 in Bundesliga's northern derby

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BERLIN — Franco di Santo's late penalty earned Werder Bremen a 1-0 win over Hamburger SV in the northern derby on Sunday to leave the visitors last in the Bundesliga.

Di Santo sent Rene Adler the wrong way in the 84th minute after Valon Behrami was sent off for pulling back Zlatko Junuzovic.

It was a hard-fought game with few real chances and many fouls. Bremen defender Jannik Vestergaard went off early after a bad challenge from Rafael van der Vaart.

Hamburg's best chance fell to Zoltan Stieber but he shot just wide in the 28th.

Bremen rallied late. Former Hamburg youth Leven Oztunali drew a fine save from Adler before di Santo spoiled Bruno Labaddia's second debut as Hamburg coach.

Labbadia was re-appointed Wednesday in a bid to stave off relegation, becoming the club's fourth coach of the season. Hamburg is the only founding member of the Bundesliga never to have been relegated but the club is four points from safety after its fifth consecutive loss. Only five rounds of games remain.

PHOTO: New Hamburg head coach Bruno Labbadia is surrounded by photographers prior the German Bundesliga soccer match between Werder Bremen and Hamburger SV in Bremen, Germany, Sunday, April 19, 2015. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)
New Hamburg head coach Bruno Labbadia is surrounded by photographers prior the German Bundesliga soccer match between Werder Bremen and Hamburger SV in Bremen, Germany, Sunday, April 19, 2015. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)

"We played a good game," Hamburg defender Heiko Westermann said. "We still have hope. Unfortunately it wasn't enough today."

Hamburg hasn't scored in a club record six games.

Kevin de Bruyne equalized for Wolfsburg to draw 1-1 at home with Schalke in the late game.

The home side dominated, especially in the second half, only for Schalke's Leroy Sane to score on a counterattack after a corner in the 53rd. The corner was headed clear and the 19-year-old Sane ran from his own half at isolated defender Christian Traesch, got a lucky bounce from Maximilian Arnold's despairing challenge, and tucked the ball inside the post.

"We had seven players from the youth set-up in the starting lineup. That's a great thing for the club," Schalke coach Roberto di Matteo said.

Ricardo Rodriguez had struck the crossbar for Wolfsburg early in the second half, and Ralf Faehrmann made a host of saves to keep the home side at bay, but de Bruyne earned his side a point with a well-struck effort from 20 yards (meters) to the bottom corner in the 78th.

Wolfsburg remained second, 12 points behind Bayern Munich, which only needs two more victories to claim its third straight title.

Bayern could seal the title next weekend if it beats Hertha Berlin at home on Saturday and Wolfsburg fails to beat Borussia Moenchengladbach away on Sunday. A draw would be good enough if Wolfsburg loses.

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PHOTO: Wolfsburg's scorer Kevin De Bruyne from Belgium, center, and Ivan Perisic from Croatia, right, celebrate their side's first goal during the German Bundesliga soccer match between VfL Wolfsburg and FC Schalke 04 in Wolfsburg, Germany, Sunday, April 19, 2015. (AP Photo/Michael Sohn)
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