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What a pulsating game! A strong first-half showing saw the Boys in Brown race into a three-goal lead at Dynamo Dresden on Saturday afternoon, only for the home side to pull it back to 3-3. Dimitrios Diamantakos (2) and Waldemar Sobota got the goals for Jos Luhukay's side, Jannis Nikolaou (2) and Moussa Koné for the hosts.

Jos Luhukay made three changes to the side that beat Holstein Kiel on Monday, Niklas Hoffmann, Florian Carstens and Waldemar Sobota coming in for Jan-Philipp Kalla and Christian Conteh, who dropped to the bench, and Matt Penney, who was serving a one-match ban. The St, Pauli boss also switched his formation from a 3-5-2 to a 3-2-4-1. 

The Boys in Brown got off to a bright start at the Rudolf Harbig Stadium, putting the home side under pressure from the off in a bid to prise open the Dynamo defence. On 13 minutes they were rewarded for their enterprise. Mats Møller Dæhli delivered a corner into the box that was met on the half-volley by Diamantakos, and his first-time effort fizzed into the back of the net to give his side an early lead. Three minutes later it was two. Diamantakos cut the ball back to Møller Dæhli, who spotted Waldemar Sobota unmarked in front of goal, and he had no trouble sliding a shot home.

Dresden were left reeling after the two-goal opening by Jos Luhukay's charges, who continued to dictate the proceedings. The home side did fashion two half-chances, but neither Jannis Nikolaou nor Patrick Ebert was able to trouble Robin Himmelmann. It was a different story at the other end. Not satisfied with a two-goal cushion, the Boys in Brown kept pressing and in the 29th minute Møller Dæhli again demonstrated his eye for a pass, this time picking out Diamantakos, who despite the attentions of several defenders was able to turn and thrash a low shot into the net for his second and our third goal of the afternoon. What an incredible first half-hour!

With the first half drawing to a close, the home side rallied and quickened the tempo. Baris Atik drove wide from a narrow angle on 38, but two minutes later the ball did find the back of the St. Pauli net, Chris Löwe swinging in a corner for Nikolaou to power a header past Himmelmann.

The Boys in Brown were well worth their 3-1 lead at the break.

The Boys in Brown were well worth their 3-1 lead at the break.

The second half carried on where the first left off as far as the pace was concerned. Finn Ole Becker played a wonderful one-two with Diamantakos, only for Jannik Müller to slide in and nick the ball off the Greek striker's toes. Dresden hit back at the other end two minutes later, Patrick Ebert missing the far corner by a whisker from a free-kick.

Encouraged by that effort, the home side began to dominate, and the pace of the game increased another notch. Cristian Fiél's team were desperate to reduce the deficit and unfortunately that's exactly what they did on 54 minutes. Himmelmann produced an excellent save with his outstretched foot to deny Alexander Jeremejeff, but the rebound eventually reached Nikolaou, who wasted no time dispatching a low shot into the corner to make it 3-2. 

Luhukay elected to bolster his attack with the introduction of Christian Conteh for Sobota in the 61st minute, and the young winger soon carved out a chance for himself when Becker knocked a long ball forward for him to chase. A blistering turn of pace saw him leave his marker for dead, but Müller got across quickly and Conteh could only shoot into the side netting. Seven minutes later, the scene was repeated. This time, Müller was able to get in the way of Conteh's shot at the expense of a corner, which came to nothing.  

Both teams threw everything at it in the final quarter of an hour, but neither Diamantakos nor Ebert was able to find the target. The key moment arrived in the 85th minute, just after Nikolaou had been sent off for a foul on Conteh. Moussa Koné, who had not been on the pitch for long, burst forward and left Himmelmann and Ryo Miyaichi trailing in his wake before slotting home to complete the comeback.

Dynamo Dresden

Broll – Wahlqvist, Ehlers, Müller (Koné 76') – Ebert, Burnic, Nikolaou, Löwe – Horvath (Stor 46'), Jeremejeff, Atik (Klingenburg 61') 

Head coach: Christian Fiél 

FC St. Pauli

Himmelmann – Carstens, Lawrence, Buballa – Hoffmann, Knoll (Østigård 79') – Miyaichi, Becker, Møller Dæhli (Buchtmann 89'), Sobota (Sobota 61') – Diamantakos

Head coach: Jos Luhukay


Goals: 0-1 Diamantakos (13'), 0-2 Sobota (16'), 0-3 Diamantakos (29'), 1-3 Nikolaou (40'), 2-3 Nikolaou (54'), 3-3 Koné (85') 

Yellow cards: 
Burnic – Møller Dæhli, Carstens

Red card: Nikolaou (84')

Referee: Benjamin Cortus