Schalke, Dortmund enjoy big wins in Bundesliga

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Posted Sunday, December 18, 2011 by YAHOO Sport

BERLIN (AP)—Schalke routed Werder Bremen 5-0 and Borussia Dortmund beat bottom side Freiburg 4-1 Saturday to keep the pressure on league leader Bayern Munich ahead of the Bundesliga’s four-week winter break.

Raul Gonzalez scored a hat-trick for Schalke in the late game, with Kyriakos Papadopoulos and Klaas Jan Huntelaar also scoring to complete a miserable evening for Werder goalkeeper Tim Wiese on his 30th birthday.

“It was a fantastic game from us over 90 minutes,” Schalke coach Huub Stevens said. “We wanted to play a good game and score one more goal than the opponent. We scored five more.”

Raul opened the scoring in the 16th minute when he was well-placed to prod the ball past the helpless Wiese after Huntelaar’s effort struck the post.

He appeared to be marginally offside for the second four minutes later, when Huntelaar set him up for a simple tap in. But there was nothing wrong with Raul’s third in the 63rd, when the Spaniard played the ball out to Christian Fuchs on the left wing before sprinting into the penalty area for the return and scoring with an acrobatic header.

Papadopoulos scored with a powerful header in the 67th, three minutes before Huntelaar claimed his 15th goal of the season—his 26th in 26 games in all competitions—with a delicate chip.

“You can’t deliver such a performance,” Werder coach Thomas Schaaf said of his side.

Schalke stays level on 34 points with defending champion Dortmund, three behind Bayern, which clinched the unofficial title of winter champion with a 3-0 win over Cologne on Friday.

Robert Lewandowski scored twice for Dortmund, his first a simple finish in the seventh minute before Jan Rosenthal equalized in the 34th.

Ilkay Guendogan put the visitors ahead again in the 44th, with Kevin Grosskreutz adding another in the 59th before crossing for Lewandowski’s second in the 70th.

Relegation-threatened Nuremberg ended Bayer Leverkusen’s six-game unbeaten run in the league with a 3-0 away win, Wolfsburg beat Stuttgart 1-0, Hamburger SV drew 1-1 with Augsburg, and Roman Hubnik scored in injury time to rescue a 1-1 draw for Hertha Berlin at Hoffenheim.

Dortmund stretched its unbeaten run in the league to 11 games to stay on Bayern’s trail.

There were furious Freiburg protests after Guendogan’s goal. The linesman raised his flag for offside when Rosenthal’s poor back pass found its way to Jakub Blaszczykowski. But referee Guenter Perl waved play on and the Poland midfielder gave Guendogan an easy finish. Replays showed the referee’s decision was correct.

Grosskreutz curled an unstoppable effort in off the right post from 20 meters (yards) when Freiburg was caught on a counterattack, and then gave Lewandowski another tap in for the 23-year-old’s 12th goal of the season.

In Leverkusen, Daniel Didavi opened the scoring in the eighth minute with his first ever Bundesliga goal and Leverkusen loan player Jens Hegeler made it 2-0 in the 22nd after Marvin Plattenhardt’s corner. Tomas Pekhart sealed the win in the 73rd, with a header from another corner.

“We’ve a lot of work ahead of us,” Leverkusen coach Robin Dutt said.

Hubnik scored after a goalmouth scramble for Hertha, in what may have been coach Markus Babbel’s last Bundesliga game in charge. German media says the 39-year-old will be replaced by Michael Skibbe in the New Year following a disagreement with Hertha’s sporting director.

Former Hertha player Sejad Salihovic scored for Hoffenheim in the 21st with a stunning shot to the top corner from 23 meters (yards).

It got worse for the visitors when Raffael was sent off in the 31st, Peter Sippel showing no hesitation in producing a red card after the Hertha midfielder punched Salihovic in the stomach following a tussle. The Bosnian earned a yellow for collapsing while clutching his face.

“Funnily enough, we played really good football after the sending off,” Babbel said.

Hoffenheim’s numerical advantage was canceled out in the 63rd, when last defender Isaac Vorsah was sent off for bringing down Adrian Ramos.

Raffael’s brother Ronny struck the post with a fierce shot late on, before Hubnik deservedly scored.

“We did everything wrong that we could do wrong,” Hoffenheim coach Holger Stanislawski said.

Sebastian Polter scored the winner for Wolfsburg in his second Bundesliga game. The 20-year-old came on in the 66th for Hasan Salihamidzic, himself a halftime substitute, and scored eight minutes later when he converted Marcel Schaefer’s dangerous cross from close range.

Augsburg had goalkeeper Mohamed Amsif to thank for keeping it scoreless in Hamburg and Torsten Oehrl put the visitors ahead with a fine effort in the 62nd.

Jose Paolo Guerrero equalized four minutes later, however, as Thorsten Fink maintained his eight-game unbeaten league run since taking over as Hamburg coach.



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