Podolski strikes late for Cologne
Lukas Podolski's late goal secured Cologne an entertaining 1-0 victory over Freiburg for their fifth home win in a row. Podolski scored in the 88th minute for his sixth goal of the second half of the season.
Cologne are undefeated in their last four games and have just one loss in the last seven for 29 points and 11th place - five points from the relegation zone. Freiburg suffered just their second loss in ten games to remain on 37 points for seventh place.
Cologne had the first scoring chance of the game after 14 minutes with Milivoje Novakovic striking over from eight yards. The hosts remained dominant as Christian Clemens volleyed just wide left from 18 yards four minutes later.
Novakovic again was unable to find the back of the net with Freiburg goalkeeper Oliver Baumann stopping him from a tight angle in the 21st minute.
The Slovenian international striker was unlucky yet again six minutes later as Baumann fended away Mato Jajalo's shot to Novakovic, who could only find the left post from five yards.
Cologne remained the better side in the second half with Baumann stopping Podolski in the 50th minute and the German international forward blasted just wide left a minute later.
The ball was in the goal for Freiburg with 15 minutes left but Papiss Demba Cisse was ruled to have fouled Cologne goalkeeper Michael Rensing. Novakovic's bad day continued four minutes later as he headed wide from eight yards.
But Novakovic set up the game-winning goal in the 88th minute, passing down the left wing where Podolski ran onto the ball and looped it just over Baumann. Freiburg had one final chance to score but Cisse headed wide from six yards out a minute into injury time.