BERLIN (Reuters) – Champions Bayern Munich went top of the table for the first time since September, ahead on goal difference of Borussia Dortmund, following the 6-0 demolition of VfL Wolfsburg.
Here are five talking points:
Bayern enjoyed the perfect tune-up for their champions League last 16 second leg against Liverpool in Munich on Wednesday.
“We are now where we wanted to be,” said Bayern coach Niko Kovac after their 12th win from their last 13 league games. Bayern had drawn 0-0 in Liverpool.
Mats Hummels, Jerome Boateng and Thomas Mueller were all in the starting lineup of Bayern on Saturday, only days after they were dropped from the national team.
The trio have since vented their frustration over coach Joachim Loew’s decision but they will be more motivated now, said Bayern forward Robert Lewandowski.
“We know that they are great players. Their motivation is now bigger because of that and they will prove it on the pitch,” Lewandowski, who scored twice to become the league’s all-time foreign scorer, said after their big win.
REUS, ALCACER ON TARGET
Dortmund who at one point had a nine-point advantage over Bayern, earned a narrow 2-1 win over VfB Stuttgart to stay level on points with the champions.
The good news was that Paco Alcacer, without a goal in the last seven matches, and captain Marco Reus, who had not scored in five weeks due to injury, both got their 14th goals of the season.
Heavy snow caused disruption for relegation-threatened Hanover 96 in their 3-2 defeat at home by Bayer Leverkusen.
Trailing 2-0, Hanover had the chance to cut the deficit when forward Genki Haraguchi fired into an empty goal only to see the ball slide to a dramatic stop in heavy snow just before the goal line. The ball was then cleared.
The match was also briefly interrupted to clear the lines before the snowfall eventually subsided in the second half.
Max Kruse scored a penalty and set up another goal in Werder Bremen’s 4-2 victory over Schalke 04, confirming his fine form this season. Kruse scored his 13th consecutive Bundesliga penalty, ranking third in the all-time list with players who have a 100 percent penalty record in the league.
(Reporting by Karolos Grohmann; Editing by Christian Radnedge)