Ribery fires Bayern to 1-0 win over Frankfurt in Bundesliga

BY foxsports • April 2, 2016

BERLIN -- Franck Ribery's spectacular volley sparked Bundesliga leader Bayern Munich to a 1-0 win over Eintracht Frankfurt, and three substitutes helped Borussia Dortmund keep pace with a 3-2 win over Werder Bremen on Saturday.

Bayern, which had 21 efforts on goal compared with the visitors' four, next hosts Benfica for the first leg of their Champions League quarterfinal on Tuesday.

"The three points are the most important thing," said Bayern striker Robert Lewandowski, who had a quiet game. "On Tuesday we'll have to play much, much better."

Shinji Kagawa, Adrian Ramos and American 17-year-old Christian Pulisic all played a role as Dortmund rallied with late goals to stay five points behind Bayern with six games left to play.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang broke the deadlock in the 53rd minute, chipping the Bremen goalkeeper in style for his 23rd goal of the season after Henrikh Mkhitaryan played him through.

Bremen equalized after a corner in the 69th when Alejandro Galvez's shot - which was heading wide - was deflected inside the left post by Dortmund midfielder Gonzalo Castro.

Zlatko Junuzovic then stunned home fans in the 74th when he scooped the ball home despite the presence of five Dortmund defenders after a great run from Levin Oztunali.

But Marcel Schmelzer crossed for Kagawa to equalize three minutes later -- as many minutes as the Japan star had been on the pitch.

Ramos scored the winner in the 82nd with a header from a corner earned by Pulisic. Both players had just come on two minutes before.

Earlier, Ribery scored for Bayern with an acrobatic scissors kick in the 20th minute, sending back the rebound after Lukas Hradecky saved Mario Goetze's initial effort with his foot. Goetze, like Ribery making a rare start due to injury problems, had run at the Frankfurt defense to create the chance. It was Ribery's second goal in just eight league appearances this season, five as a substitute.

Szabolcs Huszti shot narrowly wide for Frankfurt after the interval, prompting a response from Bayern. Xabi Alonso struck the crossbar with a free kick shortly afterward and was denied by Hradecky in the 65th.

"When you only score one goal, it's even more important not to concede," Bayern goalkeeper Manuel Neuer said.

Also Saturday, Mainz boosted its hopes of European football next season with a 4-2 win over Augsburg, Ingolstadt defeated Schalke 3-0 with Paraguay striker Dario Lezcano scoring his first Bundesliga goal to dent the visitors' hopes of Champions League qualification, and Darmstadt drew with Stuttgart 2-2 in their relegation battle.

Second-half goals from Brazilian defender Cleber, Ivo Ilicevic and Nicolai Mueller earned Hamburger SV a 3-0 win at Hannover and eased relegation fears. Bottom-side Hannover looks doomed after its 12th defeat in 14 home games this season.

"You almost feel sorry for Hannover. They're not playing like a relegated team," Hamburg `keeper Rene Adler said.

His counterpart, Ron-Robert Zieler, was dropped from the Germany team for the recent internationals.

"It's simply not good enough what we're delivering week in, week out," Zieler said.

Augsburg defender Caiuby opened the scoring in the ninth minute in Mainz, only for Christian Clemens to equalize four minutes later and Pablo De Blasis to complete the turnaround in the 24th.

Koo Ja-cheol levelled the score again five minutes before the break but both De Blasis and Clemens scored again in the second half to seal the home win.

In Darmstadt, Sandro Wagner capitalized on a botched back pass from Serey Die to get the home side underway in the 26th but Christian Gentner equalized with a volley in the 45th and there still was time for Lukas Rupp to give Stuttgart a halftime lead. Peter Niemeyer then salvaged the draw for Darmstadt in the 51st.

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