Helmes salvages point for Leverkusen

BERLIN - Bayer Leverkusen missed a chance to go into the winter break in second place when they were held to a 2-2 draw at home to Freiburg in the Bundesliga on Sunday.

Chile midfielder Arturo Vidal put Leverkusen ahead when he converted a penalty in the 16th minute but Jan Rosenthal equalised for Freiburg eight minutes later after Stefan Reisinger broke down the right.

In driving snow, Reisinger fired Freiburg ahead in the 65th minute with the first real attack of the second half, and it took a 75th minute goal from substitute Patrick Helmes, six minutes after he had come on, to salvage the hosts a point.

Leverkusen, who began the weekend in second spot but now drop to third, completed the first half of the season with 33 points from 17 games, trailing second-placed Mainz on goal difference.