Dortmund have kicked off their latest Bundesliga campaign with an efficient 2-1 success at home to Mainz. Gladbach edged visiting Champions League rivals Leverkusen, while erratic Schalke slipped up in Frankfurt.
Borussia Dortmund 2-1 Mainz
(Aubameyang 17', 89' - Muto 90+2')
Bayern Munich had set the standard as expected on Friday when the champions hammered Werder Bremen 6-0 at the Allianz Arena, Poland striker Robert Lewandowsi netting a hat-trick.
However, Dortmund ensured they kept pace with Carlo Ancelotti’s side, at least for the time being, as Aubameyang continued his prolific form from last season. The Gabon forward appears to have established an immediate connection with new arrival Andre Schürrle and the pair combined to put Dortmund ahead after 17 minutes.
Schürrle sent a pinpoint cross to the back post and Aubameyang placed a firm header into the far corner past Mainz goalkeeper Jonas Lössl.
Only Lewandowski has scored more Bundesliga goals than Aubameyang since the start of last season and he added a second from the penalty spot one minute before the end of the 90 after Schürrle was dragged down in the area.
A late lapse in concentration allowed Mainz to make the scoreline more respectable, a header from Japanese forward Yoshinori Muto beating Roman Bürki in the Dortmund goal.
"We seemed a little bit too nervous," Dortmund coach Thomas Tuchel said to Sky Sports afterwards. "We were unable to find a clean formation and the spaces behind Mainz's first line of defence. It's an important result as we were not at our best."
Borussia Mönchengladbach 2-1 Bayer Leverkusen
(Hahn 45+1, Stindl 85' - Pohjanpalo 80')
The much-anticipated Rhine derby between two teams again expected to finish in the top four was an entertaining feast of attacking football.
Leverkusen defender Jonathan Tah went close to opening the scoring four minutes before halftime but his looping header bounced away off the crossbar with Gladbach keeper Yann Sommer stranded.
Tah was then at fault for the home side’s opener in first-half added time. Christoph Kramer clipped a quick free-kick forward and Tah could only head the ball into the path of Andre Hahn.
The Gladbach forward had time to pick his spot and slotted the ball into the corner past Bernd Leno.
Both sides continued to attack with gusto in the second half and Leverkusen were rewarded 11 minutes from time.
Karim Bellarabi headed a loose ball back across goal for Joel Pohjanpalo, who had only just entered the fray and was making his Bundesliga debut for Leverkusen, to nod into the net from close range.
Another substitute, Thorgan Hazard, also made an immediate impact, sending Gladbach captain Lars Stindl clear to net the winner five minutes before the end.
It capped a fine week for the Foals, who completed a 9-2 aggregate drubbing of Young Boys on Wednesday to secure their berth in the Champions League group stage.
Eintracht Frankfurt 1-0 Schalke
Schalke, who like Mainz are competing in the Europa League this term, suffered an early-season setback when they were beaten 1-0 at Eintracht Frankfurt.
Frankfurt’s veteran captain Alexander Meier opened the scoring just after the opening 10 minutes before having a penalty saved midway through the second half by Schalke keeper Ralf Fährmann. Frankfurt’s Jamaican defender Michael Hector, who is on loan from Chelsea, was sent off 10 minutes from time after the referee ruled he had brought down Klaas-Jan Huntelaar.
But despite being a man down, the home side, who barely avoided relegation last term, managed to hold on for the three points, much to the delight of their long-suffering fans.
Augsburg 0-2 Wolfsburg
(Didavi 35', Rodriguez 89')
Wolfsburg claimed the only away victory in the day’s opening five games when they won 2-0 at Augsburg. Daniel Didavi scored in the 35 minute of his debut for the Wolves and a woeful Augsburg defensive wall allowed Ricardo Rodriguez to blast in a free kick a minute from time.
Hamburg 1-1 Ingolstadt
(Wood 30' - Hinterseer 79')
U.S. forward Bobby Wood also struck on his Bundesliga debut, though his Hamburg side surrendered the lead to slip to a disappointing draw 1-1 at home to Ingolstadt.
Big things are expected of the former Union Berlin forward, yet his solitary goal wasn't enough to win all three points for a team with high expectations this season.
Cologne 2-0 Darmstadt
(Risse 11', Modeste 61')
There was a rare weather disruption at Cologne, where the home side eventually ran out 2-0 winners against Darmstadt. With Cologne leading 1-0, the match was halted around 10 minutes into the second half after the referee decided the players were at risk from a violent thunderstorm.
Play restarted about 15 minutes later and Anthony Modeste doubled Cologne’s lead just after the hour mark.
Sunday’s remaining two fixtures see Hertha Berlin host promoted Freiburg, while Bundesliga debutants RB Leipzig, the only Eastern German team in the top flight, visit Hoffenheim.