Moenchengladbach Lead Bundesliga As Bayern Suffer Another Loss

Moenchengladbach’s French forward Marcus Thuram (C) and Bayern Munich’s Spanish midfielder Javier Martinez (R) vie for the ball during the German first division Bundesliga football match in Moenchengladbach, western Germany, on December 7, 2019. UWE KRAFT / AFP

 

 

Bayern Munich dropped to sixth after Ramy Bensebaini’s injury-time penalty fired Bundesliga leaders Borussia Moenchengladbach to a 2-1 win over the reigning champions on Saturday.

A second straight league loss puts pressure on Hansi Flick, who has been put in charge until January and was tipped to see out the season as interim boss after winning his first five games.

Bayern, now seven points adrift in the title race, went ahead at Borussia Park when Ivan Perisic fired home just after the break, but defender Bensebaini headed Gladbach level with an hour gone.

The Algerian then struck his decisive stoppage-time penalty after Bayern’s Javi Martinez was sent off for a second yellow card.

There were wild scenes of celebrations from home fans at the final whistle of a game Bayern dominated for long stretches.

But like last week’s 2-1 home loss to Bayer Leverkusen, they only had themselves to blame as they squandered a string of chances.

Bayern had six clear first-half chances, two of which saw striker Robert Lewandowski fire wide.

They were denied the lead by goal-line technology on 29 minutes when Joshua Kimmich’s shot slid under Yann Sommer’s block, but the Gladbach goalkeeper scrambled and just managed to stop the ball fully crossing the line.

Bayern finally broke through when Perisic, a first-half replacement for injured Coretin Tolisso, hammered his shot on the turn to beat Sommer four minutes after half-time.

Surviving on less than 40 percent possession, Gladbach drew level on the hour mark against the run of play as they scored off their first clear chance.

Midfielder Jonas Hofmann whipped in a corner and Bensebaini powered his header past Bayern goalkeeper Manuel Neuer.

Gladbach gained in confidence, but the game turned in the 90th minute when Bayern defender Javi Martinez gave a penalty away and was sent off for a clumsy tackle on Marcus Thuram in the area.

The Spain international trudged off after being shown second a yellow card as Bensebaini showed nerves of steel to convert the penalty.

– Dortmund run riot –

Elsewhere, RB Leipzig stay second after their 3-1 home win against Hoffeneheim as Timo Werner grabbed the opener, then netted a second-half penalty to leave the Germany striker with 15 league goals this season.

Midfielder Marcel Sabitzer scored Leipzig’s late third goal before defender Erim Bicakcic pulled back a consolation goal for Hoffenheim just before the whistle.

Borussia Dortmund eased the pressure on coach Lucien Favre to go third with a 5-0 home romp against Fortuna Duesseldorf, who drop into the bottom three, as England winger Jadon Sancho and club captain Marco Reus both scored twice.

Having ground out a 2-1 win with 10 men at Jurgen Klinsmann’s relegation-threatened Hertha Berlin last weekend, Dortmund ran riot after the break at home with four second-half goals.

Reus put the hosts ahead at Signal Iduna Park, then combined with Sancho and Thorgan Hazard after the break to shred Duesseldorf’s defence.

Sancho had a goal ruled out for offside on 52 minutes, but set up Hazard four minutes later, before scoring Dortmund’s third goal with an hour gone after combining with Reus.

Reus, then Sancho both claimed their second goals inside a devastating four-minute spell just before the whistle.

Freiburg moved up to fifth, a point above Bayern, with a 1-0 win at home to Wolfsburg thanks to a second-half winner from Jonathan Schmid while mid-table Augsburg enjoyed a 2-1 win at home to Mainz.

AFP

‘Managerless’ Bayern Thrash Fortuna Duesseldorf To Go Second In Bundesliga

Bayern Munich’s German midfielder Serge Gnabry (C) celebrates scoring the 0-3 goal with his team-mates during the German first division Bundesliga football match against Fortuna Duesseldorf in Duesseldorf, western Germany, on November 23, 2019. INA FASSBENDER / AFP

 

 

Managerless Bayern Munich went second in the Bundesliga on Saturday with a 4-0 romp at Fortuna Duesseldorf as leaders Borussia Moenchengladbach suffered a shock 2-0 defeat at Union Berlin.

Bayern’s interim coach Hansi Flick enjoyed his third straight win since Niko Kovac was sacked earlier this month as Munich moved to within a point of Gladbach.

A top-of-the-table showdown beckons in a fortnight when Gladbach host Bayern at Borussia Park.

RB Leipzig can draw level on 24 points with Bayern if they win at home to strugglers Cologne later on Saturday evening.

Bayern routed Dusseldorf with goals by Philippe Coutinho, Serge Gnabry, Benjamin Pavard and Coretin Tolisso, with Robert Lewandowski failing to score in a league game for the first time this season and ending his record 11-match run.

However, it was the Poland forward who forced a corner from which Pavard scored the opening goal after 11 minutes.

His France team-mate Tolisso then doubled the lead in the 27th minute after Duesseldorf’s US international Zack Steffen surrendered possession.

Serge Gnabry, who scored a hat-trick in Germany’s 6-1 thrashing of Northern Ireland in mid-week, continued his goal-scoring run when he was presented with a simple tap-in by Thomas Mueller seven minutes later.

Lewandowski turned provider again with the 70th-minute cross which Coutinho swept into the net to complete the rout.

In Berlin, Gladbach suffered their third defeat this season as they became the latest top six club to lose to Union.

Having already beaten Dortmund and Freiburg this season at their Alten Foersterei stadium, Union took the lead with 15 minutes gone when Nigeria striker Anthony Ujah headed home a cross.

Union ensured their fourth straight league win in stoppage time when winger Julian Ryerson floated in a cross, which deflected off a Gladbach defender to present Swedish striker Sebastian Andersson with an easy header to round off a fine win.

Schalke climbed to fourth as striker Benito Raman and midfielder Amine Harit scored their goals in a 2-1 win at Werder Bremen, whose Japanese striker Yuya Osako grabbed a late consolation.

Freiburg are third despite only drawing 1-1  at ninth-placed Leverkusen.

The visitors took the lead after only five minutes when forward Lucas Hoeler headed home at the far post after slipping his marker.

But France Under-21 striker Moussa Diaby levelled on his first start for Leverkusen since joining from Paris Saint-Germain when he slotted home from 20 metres out midway through the first half.

Despite playing with 10 men for the entire second-half, mid-table Wolfsburg managed a 2-0 win at Eintracht Frankfurt.

Their goals came from towering Dutch striker Wout Weghorst and Brazilian forward Joao Victor despite losing defender Marcel Tisserand at the end of the first half for a second bookable offence.

AFP

Wenger Ends Bayern Rumours After Being Named FIFA’s Development Chief

Arsenal’s former coach Arsene Wenger has been named FIFA’s world football development director, the Zurich-based body said on November 13, 2019.
Ozan KOSE / AFP

 

Former Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger returned to football on Wednesday after being named FIFA’s chief of global football development, ending any chance of a move to managerless Bayern Munich.

FIFA said the former Arsenal and Monaco coach would be responsible for the growth of the game “for both men and women around the world”, and would also be the “leading authority on technical matters”, including potential changes to the sport’s laws.

It added that Wenger, 70, would also be tasked with coach education and aiding a programme designed to help former players enter management.

“I very much look forward to taking on this extremely important challenge,” Wenger said in a statement.

“Not only because I have always been interested in analysing football from a broader perspective but also because FIFA’s mission as world football’s governing body is truly global.”

Rumours of Wenger making a shock return to coaching had intensified over the weekend after Wenger denied claims by Bayern Munich that they had turned down his offer to take over at the German champions after the sacking of Niko Kovac.

Bayern chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge then said there had been a “misunderstanding” and that the Bundesliga giants would speak to Wenger “in the near future”.

However it is the new FIFA role that brings the Frenchman back to the game for the first time since 2018, when he left Arsenal after 22 years in charge.

Wenger made the Gunners one of the strongest sides in Europe, winning three Premier League titles and seven FA Cups and taking his team to the 2006 Champions League final.

His also won the French league in 1987 with Monaco, adding the French Cup four years later before departing for Japan in 1995.

“I am delighted to welcome him to the team. Since I arrived at FIFA, we have placed football at the centre of our mission, striving to learn from those who know the sport inside out,” said FIFA president Gianni Infantino.

“Arsene is someone who, with his strategic vision, competence and hard work, has dedicated his life to football.”

Bringing in famous faces has been a key part of Infantino’s tenure at the head of FIFA. Wenger arrives following the departures of technical chief Marco van Basten last year and former deputy secretary general Zvonimir Boban, who became AC Milan’s “chief football officer” in June.

Wenger Contradicts Bayern’s Claim They Turned Him Down

Despite Criticisms, Wenger Gets Kroenke’s Full Backing
Arsenal’s manager Arsene Wenger is pictured prior to the UEFA Europa League football between Belgrade (Crvena zvezda) and Arsenal, on October 19, 2017 in Belgrade.
Andrej ISAKOVIC / AFP

 

Arsene Wenger has contradicted a claim by Bayern Munich that they turned him down for the vacant head coach’s job and accused the defending German champions of a lack of discretion.

Bayern need a new coach after Niko Kovac was sacked last Sunday with former Germany assistant Hansi Flick appointed interim boss for Wednesday’s win over Olympiakos and Saturday’s home league game against Dortmund.

On Thursday, Bayern put out a statement claiming Wenger had called club chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge to express interest in replacing Kovac, but said the former Arsenal boss had been turned down.

However, Wenger, 70, rejected those version of events and criticised Bayern for leaking “rumours from everywhere”.

“My name came out of nowhere,” said Wenger in an interview with beIN Sports on Friday.

“On Wednesday, Rummenigge called me, I called back out of courtesy.

“We talked for four or five minutes, maximum, and he reported that they signed Flick (as interim coach) for the next two games.

“He asked me if I would be interested, because they are looking for a coach.”

Wenger says he told Rummenigge that he would think about it and “we decided together” to talk again “next week because I am in Doha until Sunday night. This is the true story.”

After a decade as Bayern’s president, Uli Hoeness will step down on Friday and Wenger said Bayern are at a “turning point” with Rummenigge also set to quit as chairman within the coming year.

Between them, Hoeness and Rummenigge have helped grow Bayern into one of the most successful clubs in Europe.

“It seems that the future is uncertain” at Bayern, said Wenger who added that the German club had always been “very discreet and direct” in the past, “but today (they are) very exposed with rumours coming from everywhere”.

Wenger wished Bayern “good luck” in finding a replacement for Kovac.

Other candidates for the vacancy, Paris Saint-Germain boss Thomas Tuchel and Ajax’s Erik ten Hag, already made it clear last week that they will not join Bayern before at least the end of the season.

After Stunning Inter, Dortmund Turn Sights On Bayern

Dortmund’s Belgian midfielder Axel Witsel (C) and his team-mates celebrate victory after the UEFA Champions League Group F football match BVB Borussia Dortmund v Inter Milan in Dortmund, western Germany, on November 5, 2019./ AFP

 

After their stunning Champions League fightback over Inter Milan, buoyant Borussia Dortmund now have Bayern Munich in their sights for Saturday’s crunch Bundesliga clash.

Dortmund came from two goals down at half-time against Antonio Conte’s Inter on Tuesday as Achraf Hakimi netted twice to seal the hosts’ superb 3-2 win which keeps them on course for the last 16 of the Champions League.

“The second half was outstanding. That gives us a tailwind for Saturday. We are ready for the ‘Clasico’,” said club CEO Hans-Joachim Watkze, referring to Saturday’s Dortmund-Bayern showdown.

Dortmund’s third straight victory buoyed spirits for Saturday’s match at Bayern, who are hunting a new head coach since Niko Kovac was fired last Sunday in the wake of a 5-1 drubbing at Eintracht Frankfurt in the Bundesliga.

Dortmund look to bring their Champions League form to the Allianz Arena where former Germany assistant coach Hansi Flick has been named interim Bayern boss for Wednesday’s Champions League clash at home to Olympiakos and Saturday’s league game.

“If we play like that again, then we will also have a good chance in Munich,” said former Dortmund midfielder Sebastian Kehl.

“We need again to have a lot of intensity and the same willingness to take risks.

“The boys played really well – that’s how we need to play on Saturday.”

Dortmund have won four, and Bayern six, of their last 10 meetings.

It’s more than two years since Dortmund last won at the Allianz Arena, a 3-2 win in the German Cup semi-finals in April 2017.

England winger Jadon Sancho and ex-Barcelona striker Paco Alcacer scored the goals when the hosts beat Bayern 2-0 for the German Super Cup in Dortmund last August in the most recent meeting.

Borussia defender Mats Hummels, who returned in June after three years in Munich, helped Bayern win last season’s Bundesliga title and scored against Dortmund in a 5-0 drubbing last April at the Allianz Arena.

“It’s about keeping up against them,” said Hummels on how to beat Bayern, who have won just three of their last six games.

“We had the feeling, right from the start, that we were going to win (against Inter)… and that is exactly the feeling we must not give them (Bayern), he added.

Dortmund, and Hummels in particular, will need to contain Robert Lewandowski, who has scored 20 goals so far in 16 games for Bayern.

The Poland striker has scored in the first 10 league games this season, a Bundesliga record he will be looking to extend and the 31-year-old already has 14 league goals in 2019/20.

Lewandowski is currently on course to beat Gerd Mueller’s phenomenal record of 40 goals scored in 34 league games during the 1971/72 Bundesliga season.

Lewandowski Extends Bayern Munich Contract Until 2023

Bayern Munich’s Polish striker Robert Lewandowski celebrates after scoring a goal. Christof STACHE / AFP

 

Striker Robert Lewandowski has extended his contract at Bayern Munich until 2023, the defending Bundesliga champions announced Thursday.

“FC Bayern is one of the three largest clubs in the world and we have an outstanding team. I am proud to be part of this club,” said the 31-year-old, who has scored 197 goals in 246 appearances since joining Bayern in 2014.

AFP

Bayern Sign French Starlet Cuisance, Put Sane Bid On Ice

 

Borussia Moenchengladbach confirmed on Saturday that they had sold French midfielder Mickael Cuisance to Bundesliga rivals Bayern Munich.

Bayern had announced on Friday evening that Cuisance, 20, had undergone a medical in Munich. Gladbach confirmed Saturday that the transfer was complete.

The move comes on the same weekend that Bayern confirmed the likely arrival of Barcelona midfielder Philippe Coutinho on loan and said that they would put their interest in injured Manchester City winger Leroy Sane on ice.

Kicker magazine reported that Bayern had paid around 10 million Euros ($11.1m) to secure the services of Cuisance, who joined Moenchengladbach from AS Nancy two years ago.

“Mickael is a huge talent, with a lot of quality in possession football. I think he will make a name for himself because he has a good mentality, an excellent technique and an excellent left foot,” said Bayern sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic.

Salihamidzic also confirmed Friday that Bayern were close to signing Brazil midfielder Coutinho on loan from Barcelona.

“There are a few details missing, a signature and a medical test…but I can confirm that we have agreed terms with the player and his agent,” Salihamidzic told ZDF.

The German giants also said that they would now not attempt to sign Sane this summer, with the 23-year-old set for surgery after tearing his anterior cruciate ligament earlier this month.

Asked whether Bayern were still hoping to sign Sane before September, CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge said “no”, according to Bild newspaper.

“Everyone knows what an ACL tear means and how long it rules a player out for,” he said.

With Sane expected to be out until February, Bild claimed that Bayern would resume their efforts to sign him in the January transfer window.

Bundesliga: Bayern Munich Held To Surprise 2-2 Draw By Hertha Berlin

 

 

A brace for Robert Lewandowski was not enough to save Bayern Munich from making a spluttering start to the new Bundesliga season as the reigning German champions were held to a 2-2 draw at home to Hertha Berlin on Friday.

Hertha, who finished 11th last season, frustrated Bayern and took a shock lead in the first half after Lewandowski’s opener. The Polish striker then saved a point with his second-half penalty.

Despite winning the domestic double last season, Bayern opened the season under pressure after a 2-0 defeat to Borussia Dortmund in the German Supercup two weeks earlier.

READ ALSO: Guardiola Wary Of Tottenham Title Challenge

Questions over Kovac’s tactics and relentless criticism of the club’s transfer policy had also unsettled Bayern in the build-up, but they looked sharp early on as Joshua Kimmich and Serge Gnabry probed and prodded on the right wing.

The duo finally broke Hertha on 24 minutes, as Kimmich set up Gnabry’s to send a fizzing cross towards Lewandowski, who prodded home at full stretch from close range.

With Bayern completely in control, Hertha struck twice in quick succession to turn the game on its head.

The equaliser arrived with a dollop of good fortune on 36 minutes, as a hopeful long-range effort from Dodi Lukebakio deflected off Vedad Ibisevic and wrongfooted Manuel Neuer.

Three minutes later, Hertha took the lead in curious fashion after Marko Grujic clashed heads with new Bayern signing Benjamin Pavard.

While Pavard pulled up holding his head, Grujic managed to chase down the loose ball and round Neuer before himself collapsing to the turf.

Both players were quickly back on their feet, and Grujic was in the spotlight again when he pulled down Robert Lewandowski off the ball on the hour mark.

The resulting penalty, given by VAR, was coolly converted by the Polish striker to bring Bayern back on level terms.

Lewandowski, Gnabry and Corentin Tolisso all came close as Bayern pushed for the winner late on, but Hertha held on to take a well-earned point back to the capital city.

Bayern’s Record-Signing Hernandez Begins Training

Bayern Munich’s new French defender Lucas Hernandez takes part in the first session of the training camp in Rottach-Egern, southern Germany, on August 6, 2019. Christof STACHE / AFP

 

Bayern Munich’s record signing Lucas Hernandez took part in his first squad training session on Tuesday, four months after a serious knee operation, the Bundesliga champions reported on their website on Wednesday.

The 23-year-old French World Cup winner has yet to feature for Bayern since his 80 million euro ($89 million) move from Atletico Madrid in March.

His medical showed damage to the medial collateral ligament in his right knee that required an immediate operation.

READ ALSO: Zidane Snubs Bale Again For Madrid Friendly

Hernandez is unlikely to be ready for the opening game of the season against Hertha Berlin on August 16 but it is good news for his new teammates and manager Niko Kovac.

“I think the most important thing, for the time being, is that he’s properly fit and starts to settle in,” German international Leon Goretzka told the Bayern website.

The defender’s return coincides with a media broadside aimed at the club by striker Robert Lewandowski who has called on Bayern to bring in at least three new players.

“In attack, we lost three players in the shape of Franck Ribery, Arjen Robben and James (Rodriguez),” Lewandowski told Sport Bild on Wednesday.

“And for the moment we have no new recruits for these positions.”

While Robben has retired, Frenchman Ribery is out of contract and seems likely to be heading to Saudi Arabia while James has come to the end of a two-year loan period and has returned, for the moment at least, to Real Madrid.

Veteran defender Rafinha has also left in order to return to Brazil.

So far this summer, Bayern have only reinforced their defence with French world champions Hernandez and Benjamin Pavard while promising 19-year-old striker Jann-Fiete Arp has arrived from Hamburg.

The German champions have also been trying for weeks to attract Leroy Sane from Manchester City but no announcement has yet been made.

“Even if Sane comes, we need another winger,” says Lewandowski who also called for a defensive midfielder or offensive midfielder.

Bayern’s core team is made up of top-class internationals but, after the summer movement, the bench is now very shallow.

“Playing an entire season with 13 or 14 experienced professionals, it’s going to be tough,” warns Lewandowski who has already discussed the matter with club president Uli Hoeness and chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge.

“We have 50 or 60 games, so do not just think about next week but at three, four, five or six months. And for that, we do not have enough players. Hoeness and Rummenigge know my opinion.”

Hoeness and Rummenigge have promised to reinforce the playing ranks as they set their sights on the double of Bundesliga and Champions League.

AFP

Fairytale Farewell For Robben And Ribery As Bayern Win Bundesliga

Fairytale Farewell For Robben And Ribery As Bayern Win Bundesliga
Arjen Robben, Rafinha and Franck Ribery (R) lift the trophy as Bayern Munich players including goalkeeper Manuel Neuer celebrate after winning the Bundesliga title on May 18, 2019.
Christof STACHE / AFP

 

Departing veterans Franck Ribery and Arjen Robben both scored in their final game at the Allianz Arena on Saturday as Bayern Munich beat Eintracht Frankfurt 5-1 to wrap up a seventh successive Bundesliga title.

The fairytale farewell for club icons Robben and Ribery saw Bayern end an unusually tight title race two points ahead of rivals Borussia Dortmund, who beat Borussia Moenchengladbach 2-0.

Nine points behind Dortmund in December, Bayern lost just one game between January and May as they bounced back to be crowned German champions for the 29th time in their history.

Robben and Ribery, who will both leave the club at the end of the season, came off the bench against Frankfurt to score Bayern’s fourth and fifth goals and end Dortmund’s hopes of pulling off a final day miracle.

Their departure marks the end of a glistening decade of success for Bayern, who are now set for a major squad overhaul ahead of next season, having already signed World Cup winners Benjamin Pavard and Lucas Hernandez.

READ ALSO: Bayern Bid Farewell To Robben, Ribery

Kingsley Coman gave Bayern a dream start, slotting home a Thomas Mueller through ball after just four minutes.

There was brief hope for Dortmund as both they and Frankfurt scored either side of half-time.

After Gladbach dominated the first half, Jadon Sancho smashed in the opener for Dortmund, and Reus doubled the lead after the break.

In Munich, Sebastien Haller bundled in a shock equaliser at a corner just after the break, but Bayern responded furiously, and David Alaba restored the lead in a matter of minutes.

Dortmund’s hopes lay in tatters when Renato Sanches blasted the ball in from close range to score his first Bundesliga goal and put Bayern 3-1 up.

Ribery and Robben each came off the bench to standing ovations in the second half, and Ribery danced through the Frankfurt ranks to seal the title on 72 minutes, before Robben completed a fairytale afternoon with an 85th-minute tap-in.

The defeats for Gladbach and Frankfurt saw Bayer Leverkusen sneak into the fourth Champions League spot behind RB Leipzig, as they won 5-1 away to Hertha Berlin.

AFP

Dortmund Win Fortuna 3-2, Extends Title Race With Bayern To Season Finale

(L-R) Dortmund’s Danish forward Jacob Bruun Larsen, Dortmund’s Danish midfielder Thomas Delaney and Dortmund’s Belgian midfielder Axel Witsel celebrate after Delaney scored the 2-1 during the German first division Bundesliga football match Borussia Dortmund vs Fortuna Duesseldorf in Dortmund, western Germany on May 11, 2019.
INA FASSBENDER / AFP

 

Bayern Munich missed the chance to wrap up a seventh successive Bundesliga title as they were held to a goalless draw at RB Leipzig on Saturday and rivals Borussia Dortmund edged a nervy 3-2 win over Fortuna Duesseldorf.

Chelsea-bound US international Christian Pulisic found the net in his final home game for Dortmund, helping them to battle back to within two points of league leaders Bayern ahead of the final round of games next weekend.

Bayern can now secure the title with a win at home to Eintracht Frankfurt next Saturday, while Dortmund must win at Borussia Moenchengladbach.

READ ALSO: Allegri Denies Juventus Exit Rumours

Dortmund, who looked dead and buried after slipping four points behind last week, enjoyed the rub of the green as they stumbled to victory over Duesseldorf.

Pulisic, who will join Chelsea next season, bid an emotional farewell to the Dortmund fans before the game and then opened the scoring on 41 minutes.

A howler from stand-in goalkeeper Marwin Hitz allowed Oliver Fink to equalize, but Thomas Delaney restored the lead for Dortmund.

Hitz then gave away a penalty with a foul on Dodi Lukebakio, but the Belgian dragged the ball wide from 12 yards.

Mario Goetze appeared to seal the win for Dortmund on 90 minutes, but Dawid Kownacki pulled one back for Duesseldorf minutes later to make it a nerve-jangling finish for the hosts.

In Leipzig, Leon Goretzka’s stylish scissor-kick sent Bayern into ecstasy after half-time, but the goal was ruled out by VAR.

Serge Gnabry hit the bar later in the second half, but Bayern could not force the winner.

– Nuremberg and Hanover relegated –

At the other end of the table, Nuremberg and Hanover were finally relegated as Stuttgart secured the relegation play-off place with a 3-0 win over Wolfsburg.

Hanover went down fighting as goals from Waldemar Anton, Ihlas Bebou and Walace saw them beat Freiburg 3-0.

Yet Anastasios Donis, Gonzalo Castro and Daniel Didavi were on the mark for Stuttgart to condemn Hanover and Nuremberg to the drop.

Nuremberg, meanwhile, suffered a 4-0 defeat to Borussia Moenchengladbach thanks to an own goal from Lukas Muehl and strikes from Thorgan Hazard, Denis Zakaria and former Nuremberg man Josip Drmic.

The thumping win sees Gladbach go fourth overnight, leapfrogging both Eintracht Frankfurt and Bayer Leverkusen, who were held to a 1-1 draw at home to Schalke, Guido Burgstaller cancelling out Kai Havertz’s opener.

Frankfurt have the chance to break back into the top four with a win over Mainz on Sunday.

Werder Bremen also kept their European hopes alive with a 1-0 win over Hoffenheim, and Hertha Berlin snatched a late 4-3 victory away to Augsburg.

Johannes Eggestein’s first-half goal condemned RB Leipzig-bound coach Julian Nagelsmann to defeat in his last home game in charge of Hoffenheim.

Andre Hahn and Michael Gregoritsch put Augsburg ahead three times but goals from Marvin Plattenhardt and Marko Grujic kept Hertha in the game before a late brace from Salomon Kalou secured three points.

AFP

Robben, Ribery Help Bayern Go Five Points Clear In Bundesliga

Robben, Ribery Help Bayern Go Five Points Clear In Bundesliga
Bayern Munich’s Dutch midfielder Arjen Robben reacts during the German first division Bundesliga football match FC Bayern Munich v Hanover 96 in Munich, southern Germany on May 4, 2019. Christof STACHE / AFP

 

Arjen Robben said his Bayern Munich journey was not yet over after he and Franck Ribery returned from injury on Saturday to help Bayern to a 3-1 win over Hanover and heap pressure on Bundesliga title rivals Borussia Dortmund. 

The veteran wingers, both of whom are set to leave Bayern at the end of the season, came off the bench as Bayern made heavy weather of a crucial victory over the Bundesliga’s bottom club.

Ribery scored what may be his last ever goal at the Allianz Arena to seal a 3-1 win and put Bayern five points clear of title rivals Borussia Dortmund, who face a tough trip to Werder Bremen later on Saturday.

READ ALSOEspanyol Stun Atletico Madrid 3-0

Robben, who had not played since November, told Sky that his cameo appearance would not be his last for Bayern.

“I always said I didn’t want to come back just to wave to the fans and say goodbye. There are two games left and the German Cup final, so there is more to come,” he said.

Hanover kept Bayern at bay for nearly half an hour before Robert Lewandowski headed the hosts ahead from close range and Leon Goretzka curled the second in off the post.

The visitors hit back after half-time with a Jonathas penalty, the result of a highly controversial handball decision from VAR against Jerome Boateng.

Ribery secured the win six minutes from time, and the home fans had more reason to cheer a few minutes from time when Robben was brought on moments later.

Borussia Moenchengladbach and Hoffenheim both stumbled in the race for the top four, as they shared the points in a 2-2 draw.

Matthias Ginter cancelled out Pavel Kaderabek’s opener before Nadiem Amiri restored the lead with a fine volley. Josip Drmic saved Gladbach’s Champions League hopes with a late equaliser.

At the bottom of the table, relegation looms ever larger for Nuremberg, after goals from Felix Klaus and Marcel Tisserand saw them lose 2-0 in Wolfsburg.

They and Hanover were spared relegation for at least another week, however, as Hertha Berlin won 3-1 at home to Stuttgart, who remain in the relegation play-off place.

Vedad Ibisevic ended Hertha’s 395-minute goal drought when he prodded them ahead on 40 minutes.

Goals from Ondrej Duda and Salomon Kalou sealed the win for Hertha, despite a late consolation header from Mario Gomez.

AFP