BERLIN: RB Leipzig were stopped by Borussia Dortmund from going to the top. Schalke were off the bottom after winning for the first time in a year.
Erling Braut Haaland netted twice as Borussia Dortmund finally began to look like Bundesliga title contenders after an inconsistent start by beating Leipzig 3-1 on Saturday.
The result means Bayern stay two points clear of second-placed Leipzig despite crashing to a 3-2 defeat at Borussia Moenchengladbach on Friday, while Dortmund are five points behind the European champions in fourth.
Haaland is the first player to score 25 goals in his first 25 Bundesliga games and the 20-year-old has now netted 35 goals in 34 games in all competitions for Dortmund.
England winger Jadon Sancho scored his second goal in as many games by firing home on 55 minutes after Haaland’s cross was deftly flicked into his path by captain Marco Reus.
Haaland headed in a Sancho cross to put Dortmund 2-0 up with 19 minutes remaining.
The Norwegian then darted onto Reus’s defence-splitting pass in the 84th minute to tap in his second goal, before Alexander Sorloth scored a late consolation for Leipzig.
Third-placed Bayer Leverkusen were held to a 1-1 draw by Werder Bremen and are now four points behind Bayern. Leverkusen drew with Bremen despite Patrik Schick’s equaliser after Omer Toprak put Bremen ahead with a free-kick.
Union Berlin are fifth after a 2-2 draw at home with VfL Wolfsburg. Freiburg set a new club record of five straight league wins, which has seen them climb from 14th to eighth, with a 5-0 hammering of Cologne.
American forward Matthew Hoppe scored a hat trick in Schalke’s first victory for almost a year, helping his club avoid matching Tasmania Berlin’s old Bundesliga record for consecutive winless games.
Schalke’s 4-0 win over visiting Hoffenheim ended the Gelsenkirchen-based club’s 30-game wait since their last league win. Tasmania had gone 31 straight games without a win during the 1965-66 season.
The 19-year-old Hoppe hadn’t scored before for Schalke, but he opened his account with a brilliant chip over Oliver Baumann in the 42nd, then rounded the Hoffenheim goalkeeper in the 57th, and completed a game to remember with his third goal in the 63rd. All three were set up by Amine Harit, who rounded off the scoring in the 80th.
Bo Svensson’s debut as Mainz 05 coach ended in a 2-0 defeat to visiting Eintracht Frankfurt, dropping Mainz to the bottom with six points as Schalke’s first win took them a point above.
Published in Dawn, January 11th, 2021