Werder Bremen scored twice in the closing nine minutes to claim a win against FK Austria Wien that assured their progression from UEFA Europa League Group L.
For a team undefeated in 17 competitive fixtures, last season's UEFA Cup runners-up failed to set a tempo in keeping with their form, staying level thanks only to the heroics of goalkeeper Tim Wiese. Nine minutes remained when their quality finally showed, Tim Borowski heading in before Hugo Almeida's accomplished finish assured them of victory.
Before that late flourish, it was Karl Daxbacher's side who belied their winless start to the group to create the only three chances of note in the opening 45 minutes. Milenko Ačimovič and Michael Liendl were the two most culpable of failing to put them in front, both denied by Wiese.
It was the goalkeeper's athleticism that twice came to the rescue of Thomas Schaaf's side after half-time as well. Jacek Bąk was frustrated after heading goalwards from a corner before Liendl saw his shot travel through a crowd of legs only to be somehow turned behind when destined for Wiese's bottom left-hand corner. After 63 stilted minutes, Bremen finally tested substitute goalkeeper Robert Almer, with Almeida rebuffed after sauntering in behind the visiting defence.
When Borowski twice missed having found himself through on goal, Werder looked to have blown their chance. It proved third time lucky for the midfielder, however, as he ignored Almer's charge to head in. One became two with six minutes remaining when Almeida collected Aaron Hunt's pass, turned nimbly and finished clinically. Austria are five points behind second-placed Athletic Club and need to beat that side in Vienna on 3 December to keep their hopes alive.