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Leverkusen 4 Bayern 2

Battling holders knocked out by Bayer

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Bayern are out of this season's DFB Cup after a rousing comeback from three goals down proved just not enough against livewire Leverkusen in a pulsating quarter-final tie on Wednesday night.

A noisy 50,500 full house at Bayer's temporary home, the impressive LTU Arena in Düsseldorf, saw a fast-paced and entertaining first period, Hamit Altintop coming closest to breaking the deadlock with a drilled effort which drew a fine save from home keeper Rene Adler. Swiss star Tranquillo Barnetta made Bayern pay for that miss with the 54th-minute opener, and things worsened for the holders on the hour when Arturo Vidal headed home from a corner.

Patrick Helmes looked to have put the tie beyond the visitors' reach with a third 20 minutes from time, only for Bayern to stage a stunning fightback, quickfire goals from Lucio and Miro Klose setting up a dramatic last quarter of an hour. But it was not to be, Stefan Kießling applying the coup de grace in stoppage time to seal a not undeserved win for the Rhineland side.