(CNN) -- SV Hamburg condemned Hertha Berlin to a seventh straight Bundesliga defeat with a 3-1 victory in the German capital on Sunday to continue their title charge.
Hamburg's players mob Ze Roberto after his third goal in the Olympic Stadium.
The win takes the northerners level on points at the top with Bayer Leverkusen, who have a narrow lead on goal difference after thumping Nuremberg 4-0 on Saturday.
Friedhelm Funkel took over as Hertha coach on Saturday after replacing the sacked Lucien Favre, but after seeing his side take an early lead through a Arne Friedrich header saw them slip to a disappointing home defeat.
A disastrous Kaka own goal in the 24th minute undermined their good start as he headed into his own net to bring Hamburg level.
More poor defending then gifted Hamburg two goals in as many first half minutes as substitute goalkeeper Sascha Burchert showed his inexperience.
The 19-year-old raced out of his penalty area to clear danger with his head, but the ball landed at the.feet of David Jarolim who duly lobbed it back into the goal.
The third was almost a repeat as Burchert again charged out to head the ball clear, but instead the ball fell to Brazilian Ze Roberto, who repeated the trick to score the third.
Hamburg were unable to add to their tally in the second half and score the extra goal which would have seen them match Bayer Leverkusen on goal difference.
Earlier, Werder Bremen strikers Claudio Pizarro and Aaron Hunt both scored to clinch a 2-0 win at VfB Stuttgart to lift them to fourth.
Werder made a dream when German international squad man Marko Marin crossed for Peru international Pizarro to head home after three minutes.
Hunt sealed the three points when he shot past veteran German goalkeeper Jens Lehmann after 51 minutes.