Stuttgart fell to a 2-0 defeat at SC Freiburg on Sunday, missing the chance to take the top spot in the Bundesliga. VfL Wolfsburg returned to the summit with a 3-0 triumph over a befuddled VfL Bochum.
Wolfsburg's Diego Klimowicz celebrates his goal
Goals from Georgian international Alexander Iaschvili (35) and Mali star Soumaila Coulibaly (90) helped Freiburg become the first team to defeat Matthias Sammer's side in the 2004/05 campaign.
Martin Stranzl was dismissed for Stuttgart in the 69th minute to cap a miserable afternoon for the visitors who must get themselves fired up for Werder Bremen on Wednesday.
Elsewhere on Saturday, Wolfsburg started out with a furious yet sloppy attack that Bochum's defense could never really manage to answer. After firing erratically at first, Wolfsburg eventually got on target in the 27th minute after Pablo Thiam headed in a free kick.
Wolfsburg striker Thomas Brdaric came alive under the watchful eye of German national coach Jürgen Klinsmann, who came to see what the national payer could do at the club level. Although Brdaric didn't score any of his team's three goals, he proved instrumental in setting up chances and pushing his side forward.
The two other Wolfsburg goals came in rapid succession in the 39th and 42nd minutes by Diego Klimowicz and Andres D'Alessandro respectively. In the second half things slowed down considerably, but Bochum never put together an effective attack and the team's defense remained wobbly to the end. The referee had some questionable calls during the match and he disallowed a goal for either side.
Bayern pulls it out
An injury-ravaged Bayern Munich needed a brace of late goals to down Hansa Rostock 2-0 on Saturday in a heated match that saw both sides reduced to ten men. With 82 minutes played Bayern were locked 0-0 with relegation candidates Rostock but French international Willy Sagnol, who wanted to leave the club in the last season, broke the resistance with a header and substitute Mehmet Scholl added a second three minutes later.
The victory comes on the back of two straight defeats for Bayern who move up to third with the three points.
After failing to score in their previous two matches against Schalke 04 and Juventus, Bayern hoped for a comfortable win against Hansa but their lack of firepower was underlined once again. Deprived of injured trio Michael Ballack, Ze Roberto and Lucio the Bavarian titans lacked the killer instinct in front of goal with Torsten Frings and Roy Makaay both spurning good opportunities.
Bayern should have had a penalty in the 20th minute when David Rasmussen brought down Frings in the penalty area but their claims were turned down. Rasmussen must have thought the gods were smiling down on him but that hope vanished when referee Lutz Wagner dismissed him in the 37th minute for a fierce tackle.
Bayern could not breach the ten-men of Rostock and in fact Hansa drew strength from playing with one man fewer testing Bayern custodian Oliver Kahn several times. Munich's Ghana defender Sammy Kuffour was then dismissed in the 75th minute for an ugly foul to even the numbers up and bizarrely it appeared to help Bayern who scored seven minutes later through Sagnol.
The French defender latched onto a Scholl cross to head home before the veteran midfielder capped a fine substitute appearance with a goal himself.
Hamburg beats Dortmund
At the bottom end of the Bundesliga ladder Thomas Doll enjoyed his first game in charge of SV Hamburg with his team recording a 2-0 triumph over Borussia Dortmund at the Westfalen Stadium. Hamburg move off bottom spot and out of the relegation zone leapfrogging 2002 champions Dortmund who are now fifth from bottom.
Dortmund's Westfalen Stadium was a fortress last season but the gate looks to have been left open for this campaign with Hamburg taking the spoils with a victory. Belgian international Emile Mpenza scored a ninth minute opener to the delight of new coach Doll and David Jarolim wrapped up the points in the 70th minute. Dortmund have won just one league match in nine outings and their Dutch coach Bert van Marwijk is feeling the heat.
Elsewhere German champions Werder Bremen bounced back from successive league defeats to crush FC Nuremberg 4-1 at the Weserstadion. Werder followed up their midweek Champions League victory over
Anderlecht with another three points thanks to goals from Ivan Klasnic (13), Frenchman Johan Micoud (18), Christian Schulz (75) and Fabian Ernst (88).
Last season's double winners now lie fourth six points adrift of Wolfsburg.