Cottbus return to Bundesliga with win over 1860 Munich
BERLIN, May 14 (Reuters) Energie Cottbus will return to the Bundesliga next season after beating TSV 1860 Munich 3-1 today in the final second division match of the season.
They join VfL Bochum and Alemannia Aachen, who had already clinched promotion.
Cottbus could have secured the third spot two weeks ago but stumbled, winning just one point from two matches and throwing open the race for the Bundesliga. Four teams had a chance to grab the final spot today.
Cottbus will be the only team from formerly Communist eastern Germany in the Bundesliga. Hertha Berlin are based in the western half of the German capital.
Cottbus played in the top flight for three seasons from 2000 but were relegated in 2003. Hansa Rostock, another eastern team with first-division experience, finished in 10th.
Cottbus grabbed third place with 58 points, followed by SC Freiburg in fourth on 56. Freiburg beat fifth-placed Greuther Fuerth, who had 54 points, 1-0 today. The winners of the Freiburg-Fuerth match could have been promoted if Cottbus had faltered again.
Karlsruhe SC, who also had a remote chance to grab third place on Sunday, took sixth with 53 points after losing at home to SC Paderborn 3-2.
Both VfL Bochum, first with 66 points, and Aachen, second on 65, had clinched spots in the first division last month.
Cottbus fell behind 1-0 when Munich captain Paul Agostino scored in the 21st minute but American defender Gregg Berhalter converted a penalty three minutes before the interval to equalise. Vragal da Silva put the hosts ahead in the 54th minute and Kevin McKenna made it 3-1 in the 78th minute.
REUTERS SY BST2134