Two penalties in the final minutes of the match saw winless Cologne capitulate as they threw away a 3-0 lead to lose 4-3 to fellow relegation battlers Freiburg.
Hamburg moved out of the Bundesliga's bottom three with a 3-0 victory at home to Hoffenheim, as Hertha Berlin won at Cologne.
Arsenal suffered their first Europa League defeat of the season as Cologne kept their qualification hopes alive with a 1-0 victory on Thursday.
Arsene Wenger was unimpressed by the awarding of a decisive penalty as his Arsenal side fell to defeat at Cologne.
Live updates as Arsenal look to stay unbeaten in Europa League Group H when they travel to Cologne.
Bayern Munich strengthened their grip on the Bundesliga title race with a 3-0 win over Augsburg.
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