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Bundesliga lead trio win at home, Schalke stumble on road

Borussia Dortmund, Bayern Munich and Bayer Leverkusen have bagged three home points in the Bundesliga, with Dortmund running riot. Schalke, meanwhile, lost a big away lead to surprise packages Hoffenheim.

The Bundesliga's lead sides all entered "must-win" home games on Saturday afternoon, and all three of them came out with victories despite starting somewhat slowly.

Dortmund finally broke the deadlock against struggling Freiburg with a scrappy goal. Marco Reus pounced on a rebound after Oliver Baumann could only parry a long-range shot.

Ten minutes later, seconds before half time, any Freiburg hopes disintegrated when defender Fallou Diagne was sent off for fouling Robert Lewandowski in the box. Reus buried the penalty, scoring a Bundesliga brace for the 11th time in his career.

In the second half, an understaffed Freiburg could not keep pace with their hosts. Polish striker Robert Lewandowski scored a pair of goals, the first an impudent individual chip and the second a poacher's volley at full stretch, before setting up his international teammate Jakub Blaszczykowski for a fifth goal.

Bayern's Thomas Mueller celebrates after scoring his side's opening goal during the German first division Bundesliga soccer match between FC Bayern Munich and VfL Wolfsburg, in Munich, southern Germany, Saturday, Sept. 28, 2013. (AP Photo/Matthias Schrader)

Bayern can rely on Müller even on an off day

Freiburg, who impressively beat Stuttgart in the second round of the German Cup midweek, are yet to win a Bundesliga game so far this season.

Bayern labor to right result

Champions Bayern Munich welcomed Luiz Gustavo and Ivica Olic back to the Allianz Arena as Wolfsburg came to town. The Wolves put up a spirited showing, threatening only sporadically but largely shutting down their Bavarian hosts. Luiz Gustavo had one of the guests' best opportunities, but couldn't head home from a corner.

Bayern ultimately needed more than an hour and some personnel changes to find the net. Substitute Xherdan Shaqiri set the game's only goal in motion, releasing Franck Ribery down the left with a perfectly-timed pass. Ribery crossed low and Thomas Müller made no mistake from close range at the back post.

Leverkusen dispatch Hanover

Hanover are consistently among the Bundesliga's worst away teams, a record they couldn't turn in Leverkusen on Saturday. Captain Simon Rolfes got Leverkusen off the mark in the first half, heading home a long set piece from Sidney Sam.

Bildnummer: 14630427 Datum: 28.09.2013 Copyright: imago/Kolvenbach Fussball Bundesliga, 28.9.2013, Saison 2013/14, 9.Spieltag, BayArena, Leverkusen, Bayer 04 Leverkusen (schwarz) - Hannover 96 (weiss) ---- Sydney Sam (Leverkusen) jubelt nach seinem Tor zum 2:0 Kolvenbach; Fussball GER 1. BL 2014 Bayer 04 Leverkusen Hannover 96 xdp x0x 2013 quer premiumd Bundesliga Herren Saison 2013/2014 Fussball Aktion Spielszene Jubel jubelt jubelnd Freude Emotion Torjubel Freisteller Einzelbild Einzelaktion Image number 14630427 date 28 09 2013 Copyright imago Kolvenbach Football Bundesliga 28 9 2013 Season 2013 14 9 Matchday BayArena Leverkusen Bayer 04 Leverkusen Black Hanover 96 White Sydney Sat Leverkusen cheering After his goal to 2 0 Kolvenbach Football ger 1 BL 2014 Bayer 04 Leverkusen Hanover 96 x0x 2013 horizontal premiumd Bundesliga men Season 2013 2014 Football Action shot Game scene cheering cheering jubilant happiness Emotion goal celebration cut out Single Individual action

Since Andre Schürrle left, Sidney Sam has stepped up

Late in the first half, Sam hit his fifth goal of the league season to settle the score early. Played clean through by Heung-Min Son, Sam closed in on goalie Ron-Robert Zieler and then flicked a classy shot around the keeper with the outside of his left boot.

Leverkusen stay hot on the heels of the Bundesliga's top two with that win, though the same cannot be said for Schalke.

Hoffenheim the real deal? And Schalke?

A two-goal lead was not enough for Schalke on the road against Hoffenheim - in fact, two of them weren't enough.

Kevin-Prince Boateng, playing up front in the absence of regular forwards Klaas-Jan Huntelaar and Adam Szalai, put Schalke ahead within three minutes. Just 10 minutes later, Joel Matip added another with his head and Schalke seemed to be cruising.

Fußball Bundesliga 7. Spieltag: TSG 1899 Hoffenheim - FC Schalke 04 am 28.09.2013 in Sinsheim (Baden-Württemberg) in der Rhein-Neckar-Arena. Schalkes Kevin-Prince Boateng (r) jubelt über sein Tor zum 0:1. Foto: Uwe Anspach/dpa (Wichtiger Hinweis: Aufgrund der Akkreditierungsbestimmungen der DFL ist die Publikation und Weiterverwertung im Internet und in Online-Medien während des Spiels auf insgesamt fünfzehn Bilder pro Spiel begrenzt.) +++(c) dpa - Bildfunk+++

Another goal for "KPB," but Schalke still can't defend

But the season's surprise package Hoffenheim pulled one back courtesy of red-hot striker Anthony Modeste. It appeared little more than an aberration when Marco Höger scored a well-taken individual goal to restore Schalke's cushion.

The game turned early in the second half when Kevin Volland won Hoffenheim a penalty, drawing a foul from Dennis Aogo. Roberto Firmino calmly converted to put Hoffenheim back in contention.

Defender David Abraham tied the score at 3-3 with a perfect free kick half an hour from time and, if anything, Schalke were lucky to hold on to a point. Firmino hit the woodwork and substitute striker Sven Schipplock missed a sitter for Hoffenheim.

In the afternoon's other match, Mainz's losing streak continued despite an early lead through Nicolai Müller. Hertha Berlin turned the match around, winning 3-1 in front of their fans. Former Mainz attacker Sami Allagui came off the bench to score two against his old club.

Hamburg pinch point on van Marwijk debut

The evening kickoff saw former Netherlands national team coach Bert van Marwijk travel to Frankfurt with his new club Hamburg. Perhaps against the run of play overall, Hamburg salvaged a point from a tricky away tie.

Fußball Bundesliga 7. Spieltag: Eintracht Frankfurt - Hamburger SV am 28.09.2013 in der Commerzbank Arena in Frankfurt am Main (Hessen). Der Hamburger Trainer Bert van Marwijk blickt vor dem Spiel in die Runde. Foto: Arne Dedert/dpa (Wichtiger Hinweis: Aufgrund der Akkreditierungsbestimmungen der DFL ist die Publikation und Weiterverwertung im Internet und in Online-Medien während des Spiels auf insgesamt fünfzehn Bilder pro Spiel begrenzt.)

Lady luck was on Bert van Marwijk's side

Frankfurt took the lead twice in the game, capitalizing on a mistake from Swiss defender Johan Djourou to break the deadlock. Stefan Aigner beat Djourou to a fifty-fifty ball on the right wing and Johannes Flum was hovering at the back post to smash the low cross home.

Hamburg tied the score with their first shot on target all evening, moments before the break. Unsurprisingly, the chance came from a set piece - with the Bundesliga's "dinosaur" struggling to create in open play. Pierre-Michel Lasogga scored the header from a Hakan Calhanoglu corner.

Eintracht Frankfurt reestablished their lead early in the second period through Marco Russ. Back in the lead, Frankfurt seemed content to play out the closing phases of the game - inviting Hamburg to play their best football in the latter stages.

Left-back Marcell Jansen, a standout player all night, salvaged a point in the 86th minute, dribbling past Frankfurt captain Sebastian Jung and finishing low with his weaker right foot.

Coach van Marwijk said after his first game at the helm that he had seen cause for optimism in Hamburg's "young, creative" squad - that currently sits just 15th in the Bundesliga table.

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