Mainz continue their perfect run and hold the top spot | Sports| German football and major international sports news | DW | 22.09.2010
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Mainz continue their perfect run and hold the top spot

In a round-up of Tuesday's Bundesliga action, Mainz continued their dream start to the season, while Werder Bremen faltered again. Bayern Munich managed to snatch three points from Hoffenheim in added time.

Andre Schuerrle beats the Cologne defense

Mainz broke the Cologne defense in the second half

Mainz 05 maintained their perfect start to the Bundesliga season by beating Cologne 2-0 at home.

Cologne played a heavily defensive game, only to be broken by a double from 20-year-old substitute midfielder Lewis Holtby. Coming on in the second half, he broke the deadlock in the 72nd minute with a header to the far post. He sealed the win with a perfect finish to nip past Cologne goalkeeper Faryd Mondragon in added time.

Coach Thomas Tuchel's team now have 15 points from five successive wins, keeping them at the top of the table and taking them five points clear of their nearest rivals Hoffenheim.

Coach Thomas Tuchel hugs player

Mainz's Thomas Tuchel is a players' coach who is gaining fans for his approach

"I was very happy with the performance, especially in the first half, the only thing that was missing were the goals,” said Tuchel. “With that performance we could even play in the English Premier League."

Mainz, who were only promoted to the top league last year, are now two wins away from the best Bundesliga start ever.

Bayern snatch a win

Defending champions Bayern Munich were put under serious pressure from Hoffenheim, and only just snatched a 1-2 win in stoppage time.

Hosts Hoffenheim were given a dream start when a defensive blunder from Diego Contento allowed Sebastian Rudy through and his pass found Vedad Ibisevic, whose shot hit the back of the net in just 36 seconds.

Vedad Ibisevic's goal celebration

Hoffenheim's Vedad Ibisevic celebrates his speedy opening goal

They were then unlucky not to grab a second just before halftime, when Sejad Salihovic's free kick from 32 meters hit the post.

Bayern upped the tempo in the second half and were rewarded with an equalizer from Thomas Mueller in the 62nd minute. In injury time, defender Daniel van Buyten flicked the ball into the net with his knee, giving Bayern their first league win since August 20.

"We did have a bit of luck today but we sort of forced it," said Bayern coach Louis van Gaal. "We put them under so much pressure that we deserved this victory."

However, the win was overshadowed by an ankle injury to playmaker Franck Ribery, who helped set up Mueller's equalizer with a strong solo run and shot. He had to be taken off with a suspected ligament injury.

Franck Ribery getting injured

Ribery's injury means he is in doubt to play next week's Champions League game

"It doesn't look good, it looks like it is a bad ankle injury and we will have to wait and see what the tests show," said a grim-faced van Gaal.

Bremen continue to struggle

Meanwhile Werder Bremen continued their dismal start, slumping to a 4-1 defeat to Hanover 96.

An own-goal by defender Clemens Fritz after just 10 minutes put Bremen on the back foot, until captain Torsten Frings converted a penalty after 36 minutes to put his side level.

Hanover reclaimed the lead in the second half, when Didier Ya Konan scored in the 53rd minute, followed by defender Christian Schulz knocking in the third on 79 minutes.

Bremen's fate was truly sealed when Hanover's Norweigian striker Mohammed Abdellaoue added the fourth – taking his side to third place, and Bremen 12th.

Author: Catherine Bolsover (Reuters/dpa)
Editor: Andreas Illmer

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