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Visiting Bochum defeated Fortuna Düsseldorf 6-5 on penalties on Monday after a extraordinary comeback from 3-0 down after the first leg of a play-off tie to keep their place in the Bundesliga.

Takashi Uchino fired Düsseldorf’s seventh penalty of the shoot-out over the bar after Bochum’s Maximilian Wittek had converted for Bochum.

Düsseldorf had appeared in command of the relegation/promotion tie after winning the first leg 3-0 in Bochum on Thursday but Bochum roared back to level the tie at 3-3 from Philipp Hofmannn’s 16th and 66th-minute brace and a 70th minute penalty from Kevin Stöger.

There were no goals in extra time and the shoot-out also went beyond the five attempts per team with the score locked at 4-4 as Bochum goalkeeper Andreas Luthe saved from Andre Hofmann and Düsseldorf’s Florian Kastenmeier from Erhan Masovic.

But Bochum eventually prevailed in what was the biggest ever comeback in the 26th overall edition of the play-off tie. Bundesliga sides have prevailed in 13 of the 16 ties since the play-off were re-introduced in 2009.

“It is unbelievable. Everything seemed to go against us and no one would bet on us. I am extremely proud of the lads to perform like this after the first leg,” Bochum managing director Patrick Fabian told Sky TV.

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