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Hamburg fans launch flares onto pitch following historic first relegation

Hamburg fans launch flares onto pitch following historic first relegation

Hamburg were still playing when the Wolfsburg game reached full-time, and fans at the Volksparkstadion set off flares, throwing some on the pitch and sending a huge cloud of black smoke over one side of the stadium.

Hamburg SV's record of being the only ever-present team in the German Bundesliga top flight came to cruel end on Saturday.

"This is an extremely painful moment for the entire Hamburg SV", said club President Bernd Hoffmann.

And fans did not take well to the relegation as they launched flares onto the pitch, causing riot police to be dispatched and the victory over Borussia Monchengladbach to be abandoned in stoppage time as Wolfsburg's victory was confirmed.

The fires were put out and police gradually left the field so the game could resume and the final seconds be played out.

Shocking scenes unfolded in Hamburg this afternoon as fans protested against the club's relegation from the Bundesliga.

Hamburg were leading 2-1 in stoppage-time when referee Felix Brych stopped the game.

Even when Hamburg went down to 10 men after the dismissal of Bobby Wood in the 71st minute, they kept battling, hoping for a miracle but events at Wolfsburg ensured it never came.

The clock had previously recorded the amount of time the club had been in the Bundesliga.

Bayer Leverkusen might have pipped Dortmund to Europe's top competition on goal difference but fell short in a 3-2 win over Hannover and must be content with fifth place and Europa League qualification.

Bayern Munich, who sealed the title with five rounds to go, celebrated with the trophy and medals despite losing at home to VfB Stuttgart 4-1.

That placing will see Stuttgart join Leverkusen and Leipzig in the Europa League, providing Frankfurt do not overcome Bayern in next weekend's DFB-Pokal final.

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