Bayern Munich stretched its Bundesliga lead to 11 points Saturday afternoon with a comprehensive, casual stroll past Paderborn 6-0 as Robert Lewandowski and Arjen Robben each scored twice to keep the champions’ machine on track. With its closest pursuers not playing until Sunday, Bayern simply added to its runaway advantage in their quest for another title.
There was also a win for Mainz, 3-1 over Eintracht Frankfurt but late-game heroics got Werder Bremen a 1-1 draw at Schalke and Augsburg a 2-2 stalemate with Bayer Leverkusen. SC Freiburg and Hoffenheim also played to a 1-1 finish.
Werder Bremen saw its five match winning streak end, but got a share of the spoils at Schalke when Sebastian Proedl headed in from Zlatko Junuzovic in stoppage time.
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There was even greater drama in Augsburg when goalkeeper Marwin Hitz came forward to a 90+5 minute corner kick, stayed active when the ball was not cleared, eventually snapping home a five-yard equalizer to share the points with Bayer Leverkusen.
It was academic stuff for Bayern, some of the goals exquisite against defenders who were outclassed.
Robben created Lewandowski’s first goal in the 24th minute with a delightful chip over a static Paderborn backline. The Polish international was alone to finish to the left corner. Next, Franck Ribery ran down a Thomas Mueller shot that deflected wide left. The Paderborn defense seemed to think was it headed out of play, but Ribery got there to cut it back across the face of goal and Lewandowski had a simple finish in the 37th minute.
Robben scored from the penalty spot in the 64th minute after Florian Hartherz received a direct red card for bringing down the Dutch international just as he shaped to shoot. Ribery got the fourth with 18 minutes left when he had far too much space near the penalty spot and picked his spot, then Mitch Weiser, produced an immaculate chip from the right side, for the fifth. Robben’s second came against the 10-man defense in the closing stages.
Back in the fifth week of the season Paderborn had actually gone to Munich atop the league after their promotion to the top flight. They fell heavily, 4-0, then and suffered worse Saturday, playing like a team that had no confidence that they could challenge one of Europe’s best. After that heady start to the campaign they are now facing a battle to remain in the Bundesliga, caught among the pack of teams all living too close to the relegation zone.
Bayer Leverkusen broke on top in the eighth minute thanks to an error from Hitz, later to become the hero. He failed to hold a drive from Josip Drmic, spilling the ball right back to the shooter who made no mistake with his second opportunity. Drmic should possibly have had another just before the interval when he was in on the right but he completely misplayed his shot attempt and did not get the ball on the frame.
Augsburg got level just before the hour when Daniel Baier’s pass found Francisco Caiuby between defenders at the top of the box and he had time to slide the ball past Bernd Leno. It was Augsburg’s first real chance of the match and well taken. Stefan Reinartz put Leverkusen ahead again in the 84th minute before Hitz came to his team’s rescue.
Schalke needed a bit of good fortune to get on top in the 62nd minute, Werder Bremen keeper Raphael Wolf down a bit too slowly to a Max Meyer drive from the 18 that squeezed under Wolf and into the left corner but Bremen kept its unbeaten run alive when Proedl scored in stoppage time.
Freiburg took a 26th minute lead at home when Jonathan Schmid’s free kick fell for Immanuel Hoehn to score before Hoffenheim answered six minutes before the break, Kevin Volland beating Roman Buerki with a drive from the top left of the box.
Stefan Aigner gave Eintracht Frankfurt a 35th minute lead with Haris Seferovic providing the set-up but Christian Clemens got Mainz level in Martin Schmidt’s successful debut as manager when he accepted a chance created by Shinji Okazaki. Two goals in three minutes just after the restart from Johannes Geis, with a remarkable free kick from wide on the left, and Yunus Malli, got Schmidt headed to his first win since moving into the top spot this week. Eintracht finished a man down after Carlos Zambrano pushed down Geis in the 84th minute and was sent off.
Trying to close the gap at the top, second-place Wolfsburg faces Hertha Berlin and third-place Borussia Moenchengladbach play Hamburger SV Sunday to complete round 22.