BERLIN – A second-half brace from substitute Leon Bailey was not enough for Bayer Leverkusen as they were held in a thrilling 4-4 draw at Hanover on Sunday.
Substituted on at halftime with his team trailing 3-2, Bailey scored twice to put Bayer in the lead, but Julian Korb’s 83rd-minute equaliser saved a point for Hanover.
Bayer moved up to fourth in the Bundesliga after the draw, level on 28 points with fifth-placed RB Leipzig, who can move back above Bayer with a home win over Hertha Berlin.
Julian Brandt put Leverkusen ahead with a brilliantly controlled volley on 11 minutes, only for Ihlas Bebou to immediately head Hanover level.
Niclas Fuellkrug put the home side in front from the penalty spot nine minutes later after Jonathan Tah’s foul on Felix Klaus.
Leverkusen struck back just minutes later, Admir Mehmedi’s well-angled shot levelling the scores again after Hanover had given the ball away in defence.
The drama continued just before halftime, as Hanover struck on the counter attack, Klaus whipping in a fine shot to restore the hosts’ lead.
Leverkusen coach Heiko Herrlich brought on Bailey at the break, and the move immediately paid off, as the Jamaican broke down the left wing and made it 3-3 two minutes into the second half.
Bailey struck again 20 minutes later, putting Leverkusen into the lead with another devastating counter-attack on the left flank.
However, seven minutes from time, sloppy Leverkusen defending allowed Korb to squeeze in Hanover’s fourth and rescue a well-earned point for his team.