NUREMBERG, April 14 (Bundesliga) - Nurnberg maintained their push for a UEFA Cup spot with a narrow win over Bundesliga strugglers Alemannia Aachen on Saturday.
Chhunly Pagenburg scored the only goal of the game after 12 minutes to move Nurnberg into the European places and fifth in the table, two points above Bayer Leverkusen who travel to Bayern Munich on Sunday.
It was a day to forget for Aachen, who also had Sascha Rosler sent off in the dying minutes, and they remain just three points above the drop zone with five matches left to save their top-flight status.
Nurnberg dominated from the start and it was no surprise when they took the lead after 12 minutes.
Marco Engelhardt played the ball into Pagenburg and the 20-year-old split the defence before planting the ball into the bottom corner.
The goal spurred Aachen to life, and they should have equalised after 23 minutes, but Rosler's header came back off the crossbar.
Nico Herzig then also saw his header go wide of the mark for the visitors, while Laurentius Reghecampf lined himself up for a shot soon after, but the Nurnberg defence managed to scramble the ball away.
Nurnberg were again the quickest to find their feet after the interval and Pagenburg almost doubled his tally for the afternoon seven minutes into the second half with a shot which was turned away by Aachen goalkeeper Kristian Nicht.
Pagenburg then set up Jan Kristiansen for another chance, but the Dane was unlucky to see his powerful strike come back off the post.
Substitute Vedad Ibisevic tried to get Aachen back into the match, but his effort trickled inches wide and Marius Ebbers also failed to find the target for the visitors, flicking his shot past the right post after a mistake by Nurnberg defender Andreas Wolf.
Aachen pushed for a vital equaliser, but continued to waste their chances and their frustrations boiled over in injury time when Rosler was shown his second yellow card for arguing with the referee.