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Rakitic earns a point for Schalke

  • Story Highlights
  • Schalke's Ivan Rakitic earns his side a 2-2 draw at Stuttgart
  • The teenage Croat sub scores a 76th minute equalizer against the champions
  • Sami Khedira and Pavel Pardo had put Stuttgart 2-1 ahead
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STUTTGART, Germany -- Schalke 04's teenage substitute Ivan Rakitic scored seven minutes after coming on to force a 2-2 draw against defending German champions VfB Stuttgart on Friday.

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Khedira puts Stuttgart level with a 30-yarder after 63 minutes.

Rakitic, a summer signing from Swiss-side Basel, grabbed the equalizer in the 76th minute after Stuttgart had struck twice in four minutes to turn a 1-0 deficit into a 2-1 lead in the opening game of the Bundesliga season featuring last season's top two.

Schalke opened the scoring when Levan Kobiashvili struck in the 25th minute, his shot being deflected by Stuttgart's Roberto Hilbert past goalkeeper Raphael Schaefer.

Sami Khedira drove in a 63rd minute leveler for the champions and four minutes later Mexican midfielder Pavel Pardo converted a penalty to put them ahead.

The 19-year-old Croat Rakitic grabbed his moment of glory to slot home a well-struck goal to earn a point.

The home side were crowned German champions for the fifth time last season when Schalke stumbled in the final stages, allowing Armin Veh's side to seal the title while they grabbed second spot.

In a game watched by a sell-out 57,500 crowd, Germany striker Kevin Kuranyi picked up the first yellow card of the new season after 11 minutes when he sent Stuttgart defender Serdar Tasci tumbling.

Schalke took a fortuitous lead when Georgian midfielder Kobiashvili hit a 25th minute shot which deflected off the Hilbert's ankle and spun into the empty net with goalkeeper Schaefer covering the other post.

Stuttgart's new signing, Romanian striker Ciprian Marica was booked for continuing his run deep into the Schalke defense long after the whistle had blown with half-time approaching.

Schalke just missed a chance to go 2-0 up on 53 minutes when defender Christian Pander drove a direct free-kick just wide of the post.

The temperature rose with three yellow cards in four minutes, but the champions were back on terms when 20-year-old midfielder Khedira unleashed a thunderbolt shot from 30 yards which beat Manuel Neuer after 63 minutes.

Stuttgart took the lead when Neuer brought down Marica in the penalty area after a fierce shot by Brazilian Cacau and Mexican midfielder Pardo smashed home the spot kick on 67 minutes.

But Kobiashvili's replacement Rakitic struck with 14 minutes left to earn a draw. E-mail to a friend E-mail to a friend

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