Bundesliga: Leverkusen Cruise Past M'Gladbach

There was action aplenty in Saturday’s Bundesliga action with a comfortable 3-1 win for Bayer Leverkusen against struggling Mönchengladbach. Werder Bremen’s woe continues following a 1-0 defeat to Karlsruhe. Schalke however had some early Christmas cheer with a 1-0 win over Hertha.

Schalke 1-0 Hertha Berlin

Karlsruhe 1-0 Werder Bremen

Eintracht Frankfurt 4-0 Bochum

Bor. Mönchengladbach 1-3 Bayer Leverkusen

Energie Cottbus 0-3 VfB Stuttgart

Arminia Bielefeld 0-0 Borussia Dortmund      

 

Schalke 1-0 Hertha Berlin  

The pressure on Schalke trainer Fred Rutten has eased slightly after a 1-0 home win over high-fliers Hertha Berlin.  Neither side dominated the match, which at times wasn’t of the highest quality, but three points will delight the Schalke management.  

After a goalless first 45 minutes at the Veltins Arena, the home side opened the scoring after 65 minutes via veteran forward Gerald Asamoah. 

Jefferson Farfan crossed from the left and the ball lofted over Hertha keeper Drobny.  Asamoah had the pretty simple task of heading in from close range.     

Karlsruhe 1-0 Werder Bremen  

KSC have climbed out of the bottom three with a long awaited win.  Their victims Werder Bremen continue to lurch from the sublime to the ridiculous and went down to a 1-0 loss.   

With the game looking like it was going to run down to a goalless draw, the home side grabbed a vital goal seven minutes from time. 

A corner was hammered goalwards by Staffeldt, and Stefan Buck was on hand to stick out his foot and take the ball past Tim Wiese and into the Werder net.   

Things then went from bad to worse for Werder when Claudio Pizarro was shown a red card late on.  He dived theatrically in the penalty area which in itself was deserving of a yellow card but then he showed his frustration by putting a hand into the face of Stoll, who was berating him.     

Eintracht Frankfurt 4-0 Bochum  

Eintracht recovered well from their hammering last week at the hands of Werder Bremen by thrashing Bochum at the Commerzbank Arena.  The early sending off of Bochum keeper Daniel Fernandes was the game’s turning point though.   

Bochum’s afternoon got off to a terrible start with just five minutes played with their goalkeeper sent off and a penalty awarded against them.  Fernandes was shown the red card for a professional foul on Martin Fenin after he had fluffed a simple back pass from Maltritz. 

Nikos Liberopoulos stepped up to dispatch the spot kick and give the Adler an early lead.   

Ten-man Bochum were further punished just before the half time interval when striker Liberopoulos bagged his second of the afternoon.  A cross from Fenin on the right was met at the far post by the Greek, who headed into the left hand corner.  

On 62 minutes there was further woe when Steinhöfer curled in a direct free kick from 25 meters out.  Substitute goalkeeper Renno misjudged the flight of the ball and was left helpless as it nestled in back of the net.

A fourth Frankfurt goal arrived just two minutes later via Marco Russ.  A long ball from midfield landed at the defender beat Marcell Maltritz and fired home with ease to heap more misery on a woeful Bochum.  

Bor. Mönchengladbach 1-3 Bayer Leverkusen  

Bayer Leverkusen have kept touch with leaders Hoffenheim and Bayern Munich following a 3-1 away win over Mönchengladbach, which sees Hans Meyer’s side go bottom.   

The guests opened the scoring with 25 minutes on the clock with Stefan Kießling on target.  An attempted clearance from Gohouri fell nicely to the Bayer striker, who fired an unstoppable shot past Heimeroth in the Gladbach goal.   

The German international forward then doubled Leverkusen’s lead eight minutes before the break.  A quick counter saw Dum aim a fine pass through to Michael Kadlec, who showed great vision to play in Kießling.  Alone in front of goal, he dispatched a right foot from just five meters out.   

Nine minutes into the second half and it was Patrick Helmes’ turn to get in on the scoring act.  The Bundesliga’s second top scorer played a one-two with Kießling in the midfield before bombing into the penalty area and firing home a right foot shot.     

The Fohlen pulled a goal back on the hour mark through youngster Jantschke.  The 18 year old headed home his first ever Bundesliga goal following a free kick delivery from Marko Marin.     

Energie Cottbus 0-3 VfB Stuttgart  

Stuttgart trainer Markus Babbel enjoyed a second win in his second Bundesliga game in charge of the Swabians thanks to a 3-0 away win over Cottbus.   

The home side were very slow to start the game and were punished after just four minutes when Stuttgart opened the scoring.  Roberto Hilbert was given plenty of time and space 18 meters from goal and his shot flew unhindered into the top left corner.   

The second goal of the game didn’t arrive until the 63rd minute and was the visitors who grabbed it.  A fantastic pass from Cacau brought Jan Simak into the game.  The Czech beat both Kukielka and Cagdas before firing past the outrushing Tremmel.   

Five minutes later and it was 3-0 to Stuttgart with Sami Khedira hitting the target.  The goal was a near carbon-copy of the first with the VfB midfielder given too much space and time.  He took his opportunity well and fired past Tremmel with a neat finish.     

Arminia Bielefeld 0-0 Borussia Dortmund  

Arminia Bielefeld and Borussia Dortmund played out a 0-0 draw at the Schüco Arena. 

The home side can consider themselves unlucky though as they hit the woodwork in the first half as well as having a goal disallowed.

--Mathew Burt, Goal.com