Bundesliga Bulletin: Bayern and Dortmund fly into Klassiker, Schalke hit new low | Sports| German football and major international sports news | DW | 24.05.2020
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Bundesliga Bulletin: Bayern and Dortmund fly into Klassiker, Schalke hit new low

Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund impressed in their final games before Tuesday's crucial Klassiker. Elsewhere, Timo Werner and Kai Havertz inspired their teams to victories, but Schalke suffered another humiliation.

Good week for: Bayern, Dortmund, Leverkusen, Hertha Berlin, Hinteregger

Bad week for: Union Berlin, Gladbach, Hinteregger, Schalke, Timo Werner & Leipzig

The Headlines:

Wing backs provide lift off for Dortmund

Erling Haaland's goalscoring exploits have hogged the headlines for Dortmund since his arrival in January. But the Norwegian, along with Julian Brandt and Thorgan Hazard, failed to make much of an impact in a 2-0 win over Wolfsburg on Saturday. In fact, Haaland's biggest contribution was an air shot that unwittingly served as a dummy for Raphaël Guerreiro to open the scoring, his third in the two games since the restart. Achraf Hakimi, operating on the other side of the pitch, slammed home the second late on. The wingbacks have now both notched eight goals in all competitions this season and offer evidence of the varied threat that Lucien Favre's side pose. But the failure of Mats Hummels to emerge for the second half is a dark cloud on the horizon. If he doesn't recover, Dortmund will have just one fit center back for the visit of Bayern Munich on Tuesday.

Bayern survive scare to blow Frankfurt away

It looked like one-way traffic in Munich as Bayern raced into a 3-0 lead thanks to Leon Goretzka, Thomas Müller and Robert Lewandowski. But two quickfire goals from corners from Eintracht Frankfurt defender Martin Hinteregger - his seventh and eighth goals of the season - exposed the champions' defensive frailties and the visitors were back in the game. In an end-to-end second half however, Alphonso Davies restored Bayern's two-goal cushion while Hinteregger completed his hat-trick - albeit, at the wrong end, fumbling the ball into his own net. Filip Kostic struck the post late on as Frankfurt continued to cause Bayern problems on the counter-attack, something which won't have been missed in Dortmund.

Fußball Bundesliga Kai Havertz Bayer Leverkusen (Getty Images/AFP/I. Fassbender)

Havertz inspired Leverkusen to victory once again.

Havertz stars as Leverkusen leapfrog Gladbach

The race for the Champions League places took center stage on Saturday as two of the Bundesliga's form teams, third-place Borussia Mönchengladbach welcoming fifth-place Bayer Leverkusen. But despite the similarities between the two sides, one player again made all the difference.

Derby day revenge as Hertha paint Berlin blue

Already on their fourth head coach and having had several regrettable run-ins with Facebook Lives, it's fair to say it's not been a brilliant season for Hertha Berlin so far. And to make matters back in November, they were beaten 1-0 by local upstarts Union. But now, with Bundesliga veteran Bruno Labbadia in charge, things seem to be looking up. After a fairly flattering 3-0 win away at Hoffenheim last week, Hertha blew Union away in a relentless second half at the Olympic Stadium. Vedad Ibisevic, Dodi Lukebakio, Matheus Cunha and Dedryck Boyata were all on the score sheet as Hertha tasted derby day revenge.

Nagelsmann gets a reaction

After last week’s dropped points against Frieburg, Julian Nagelsmann said defeat today in Mainz would end Leipzig’s hopes of winning their first Bundesliga title. Such a scenario was averted as Leipzig bounced back in style, trouncing Mainz 5-0. Timo Werner, a target for Liverpool and Bayern Munich, grabbed a hat-trick – his second against Mainz this season (see stats below) - and Kevin Kampl was in sparkling form too. Leipzig are back up to third and still in the title hunt; they will be hoping for a draw in Tuesday’s Klassiker.

Fußball Bundesliga FC Schalke 04 (picture-alliance/dpa/AP/M. Meissner)

Schalke bosses watch on as their side slip to a painful 3-0 home defeat by Augsburg

Schalke in the quicksand

Things are going from bad to worse for Schalke, who slumped to a humiliating 3-0 home defeat by lowly Augsburg. The manner of the result may well set alarm bells ringing for Schalke, who are now without a league win in nine and have just one win to their name in 2020. In short, it’s relegation form and David Wagner has his work cut out to get anywhere near the impressive form of earlier in the season. For Augsburg, it’s relief. The win stops the rot and keeps them a safe distance from the drop zone.

Cologne late show stuns Rhein rivals

Düsseldorf were coasting towards three points in their neighbors' back yard when it all went horribly wrong for Uwe Rosler's side. Anthony Modeste and Jhon Cordoba struck in the 88th and 90th minutes, respectively, to deny Düsseldorf a first Rhein Derby victory in Cologne since 1989.

The stats:

— With 80 goals after 27 matchdays, Bayern Munich have set a new Bundesliga record.

— Thomas Müller provided his 17th assist at matchday 27, equalling the Bundesliga record held by Kevin de Bruyne from 2014-15 for Wolfsburg.

— Timo Werner is the first player since 1998-99 (Ulf Kirsten vs Mönchengladbach) to score two hat-tricks against the same opponent in the same Bundesliga season. 

— RB Leipzig have now scored 66 Bundesliga goals this season, already tying their club record from the 2016-17 season with just 27 games gone.

— Jadon Sancho has assisted 16 goals in the current Bundesliga season, the highest for a Dortmund player since 2004-05.

— For the first time ever, Kai Havertz has been involved in at least one goal in 6 consecutive Bundesliga games (5 goals, 3 assists).

— Martin Hinteregger has scored 8 Bundesliga goals following corners this season, setting a new record in the competition. No other defender in Europe's top five leagues has scored as many goals as the Austrian. 

— Werder Bremen's victory in Freiburg was their first in 126 days.


Best quotes:

"It was probably my best own goal - and hopefully my last one" — Eintracht Frankfurt's Martin Hinteregger

"We're on the march. Dortmund are on the march. We're looking forward to Tuesday" — Thomas Müller

"The Bundesliga is very well balanced at the top this season. The quality is high" — Bayern Munich coach Hansi Flick 

"We intended to win here today and we did so deservedly. We had the game under control from the very first minute" — Bayer Leverkusen forward Kai Havertz

"It's not just about Kai. We as Bayer 04 produced a top performance, and Kai was part of that. But there were 13 others who played just as well" — Bayer Leverkusen coach Peter Bosz

"Last week, they played great football. This week, for large periods, not so much. But they're still well equipped to face Bayern" — Dietmar Hamann on Borussia Dortmund

"I don't even know what Alt is." — Cologne coach Markus Gisdol, when asked if he likes Düsseldorf beer 'Alt'.

The fans:

Ahead of Bayern Munich’s first home "ghost game" at the Allianz Arena on Saturday, dozens of banners across Munich with messages criticizing the Bundesliga restart, with the coronavirus pandemic still ongoing.

Produced and hung up by hardcore Bayern supporters, they accused the German Football League and Bundesliga clubs, including their own, of greed and questioned the integrity of the competition.
Some called for an immediate end to the season.