Wolfsburg sees off Kiel’s challenge to stay in Bundesliga

KIEL, Germany (AP) Wolfsburg successfully defended its Bundesliga status by beating Holstein Kiel 1-0 in the second leg of their relegation-promotion playoff on Monday.

Robin Knoche’s second-half goal gave Wolfsburg a 4-1 victory on aggregate for its second playoff victory over the third-placed team from the second division in as many seasons.

Volkswagen-backed Wolfsburg finished third from bottom in the Bundesliga.

Kiel, which needed a 2-0 win at home, attacked bravely but failed to find a way through the visitors’ defense. Kiel’s hopes of an upset were ended with 15 minutes remaining when Knoche scored off a corner.

This season was Kiel’s first in the second tier since 1981 following its promotion from the third division last season. The northern city club was promoted from the fourth tier four seasons before that and was going for its first promotion to the Bundesliga.