Sunday’s early match was a duel between two teams off to poor starts. Hamburg and Nuremberg were both on five points with only a single win between them. Visitors Hamburg got back on track.
Ahead of the match, Nuremberg could argue that their record (5 draws and 2 losses) wasn't really that bad. After the match, any such arguments were well and truly debunked.
Visitors Hamburg were the better team right from the opening whistle, and after a quarter of an hour Dutch playmaker Rafael van der Vaart scored with a scissor-kick volley of a Heiko Westermann cross. It was the sort of goal you normally only see on PlayStation.
Nuremberg were unable to muster any real pressure, and Hamburg went into the dressing rooms ahead.
After the restart, striker Pierre-Michelle Lasogga - on loan from Hertha Berlin - went medieval on the hosts scoring a hat-trick within seven minutes. First he slotted home a van der Vaart pass on the break. Then he poked home a corner while completely unmarked. And he also banked in a shot off the post after a dreadful give-away by Per Nilsson.
Almost a half an hour remained on the clock, but Nuremberg were through. And to add insult to injury, a miscalculated attempt at a clearance by Club keeper Raphael Schäfer gifted Tolgay Arslan the 5-0.
Nuremberg coach Michael Wiesinger is now surely a candidate for a pink slip. Ominously, former Schalke and Wolfsburg coach Felix Magath was in attendance at the match.
The victory lifts Hamburg out of the relegation zone, while Nuremberg are third-to-last.
Freiburg, Frankfurt split the points
In Sunday’s late match, Freiburg hoped to notch their first season win and escape last place when they welcomed Eintracht Frankfurt.
But it was the visitors who got off to the better start. Vaclav Kadlec and Sebastian Rode both had excellent early looks at goal, but couldn’t hit the target. As the first half wore on, Freiburg settled in, and the match was goalless at the break.
After the restart, Freiburg were the better team for a quarter of an hour, but it was Frankfurt– kind of - breaking the ice. Freiburg keeper Oliver Baumann got a leg to a Constant Djakpa cross only for the ball to ricochet off Christian Günter for an own goal.
It was a flattering lead for Frankfurt, and Freiburg were rewarded for their energy, when Nicolas Höfler headed in with five minutes to play. Frankfurt’s Johannes Flum got sent off just before the final whistle, but Freiburg couldn’t find the late winner.
The 1-all draw moved still winless Freiburg up to second-to-last in the table. Frankfurt are 13th, one spot ahead of Hamburg.