Bayern Munich escape with draw after Nürnberg’s late penalty miss

 Bundesliga title race to go to wire after surprise result
 Real Madrid beaten by Rayo Vallecano 1-0

Tim Leibold reacts after missing a late penalty. Photograph: Christof Stache/AFP/Getty Images

Bayern Munich stumbled to a 1-1 draw at relegation-threatened Nürnberg on Sunday to leave the Bundesliga title race wide open with three games left in the season.

Serge Gnabry rescued a point for Bayern with a 75th-minute volley after the hosts, whose Tim Leibold later missed a last-minute penalty, took an unexpected lead after the break through Matheus Pereira.

The result leaves Bayern Munich top on 71 points with Borussia Dortmund in second place on 69 after Saturday’s 4-2 home defeat by Schalke 04 in the Ruhr valley derby.

Third-placed RB Leipzig, who have secured a Champions League spot for next season, are on 64.

Bayern, buoyed by Dortmund’s slip-up, knew a win at Nürnberg could potentially see them secure the title as early as next week as it would put them four points ahead of their title rivals as they chase a league and cup double.

“We had a tough German Cup game in midweek and maybe we were not that fresh,” the Bayern coach, Niko Kovac, said in referring to their 3-2 semi-final win over Werder Bremen on Wednesday.

“Nürnberg did it well and fought for every ball. They made our life difficult from the first to the last minute. It is frustrating because we could have gone four points clear.

“Now we must put this behind us as quickly as possible and win all three remaining games,” said Kovac, who could be without James Rodríguez after the Colombian was forced off injured only 15 minutes after coming on as a second-half substitute.

Dries Mertens moved level with Diego Maradona on Napoli’s list of all-time leading Serie A scorers with the opening goal in a 2-0 victory at Frosinone. The Belgium international scored his 81st goal for the Partenopei in the 19th minute – a stunning curling free-kick into the top corner – to move joint-fourth on the list.

A fine solo goal from Amin Younes early in the second half doubled Napoli’s lead before José Callejón hit the woodwork twice and Fabián Ruiz crashed a shot against the crossbar. Napoli moved eight points clear in second place with the win.

Adrian Embarba struck from the penalty spot as Rayo Vallecano grabbed a La Liga lifeline with a shock victory over Real Madrid.

Adrian Embarba celebrates after scoring the winning goal against Real Madrid. Photograph: Rodrigo Jimenez/EPA

The decisive moment came in the 23rd minute after the referee, Pablo Gonzales Fuertes, had been asked to review Jesus Vallejo’s challenge on Javi Guerra and handed Embarba the chance to fire his side ahead.

Real turned in a disjointed display and rarely looked like dragging themselves back into the game, with Rayo good value for a 1-0 win which leaves them six points adrift of safety with three games to play, but with hope renewed.

The race for the final Champions League qualifying spot is no nearer a resolution after three of the clubs in the running all lost on Sunday.

Valencia could have pulled level on points with Getafe and Sevilla – fourth and fifth respectively – with victory over Eibar in the early kick-off. However, a stoppage-time goal from the substitute Charles saw them fall to a 1-0 defeat at the Mestalla, opening the door for their rivals, who played later in the day, to pull clear.

But neither Sevilla nor Getafe were able to enhance their case for a place at Europe’s top table.

Sevilla went down 1-0 at Girona, with Cristian Portu netting the winner before the visitors had Ever Banega sent off for kicking out in the fifth minute of stoppage time. Getafe then blew a chance to strengthen their grip on fourth place, losing 2-1 at Real Sociedad.

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