Bayern Stay In The Hunt
Posted November 23, 2008on:
BERLIN: Another five-star performance from France midfielder Franck Ribery helped third-placed Bayern Munich to a 4-1 win over Energie Cottbus yesterday to keep the pressure on Bundesliga leaders Hoffenheim.
Midfielder Ribery has now scored a goal in each of Bayern’s last six league games and he unleashed a stunning first-half free-kick before creating another for Germany striker Miroslav Klose as the win kept Munich third in the table.
But Hoffenheim’s 3-1 win in Cologne keeps them three points clear of both chasing Bayer Leverkusen and Bayern.
Bayern got off to a terrible start against bottom club Cottbus when Albanian midfielder Ervin Skela curled in a free-kick on 25 minutes which was allowed to fly through the Munich defence.
Goalkeeper Michael Rensing was incredulous with anger as his defenders left him exposed, not for the first time this season.
But the home side were level just four minutes later when Ribery curled a superb free-kick just inside the post to make his goal-scoring record six goals in nine league games.
And Munich then took the lead at the Allianz Arena when Argentina defender Martin Demichelis headed his side ahead on 38 minutes.
A superb cross from Ribery on 54 minutes was headed home by Klose and a cross from Italian defender Massimo Oddo four minutes later was smashed home by compatriot Luca Toni to complete the rout.
League leaders Hoffenheim are now three points clear of rivals Bayer Leverkusen after their 3-1 win at Cologne.
Ten-man Hoffenheim picked up their 10th win of the season after the league’s top scorer Vedad Ibisevic powered through the Cologne defence and with a hint of offside Demba Ba unleashed his shot on 32 minutes.
And Ibisevic later grabbed two of his own in the second-half to add to his impressive record with 16 goals in 14 games although Cologne grabbed a consolation goal.
Hoffenheim were reduced to 10 men when Brazilian defender Luiz Gustavo Dias was sent off after he was shown a second yellow card for a heavy challenge.
Second-placed Bayer Leverkusen are now level on points with Bayern after they went went down 2-1 down to Arminia Bielefeld.
Hertha Berlin kept up their pressure on the league leaders with an impressive 3-2 win at snowy Bochum.
Brazilian midfielder Rafael opened the scoring with a header on 25 minutes before Serbian midfielder Gojko Kacar made it 2-0 when he fired home on 33 minutes.
And another header by Brazilian Cicero on 39 minutes made it 3-0 at half-time before Bochum pulled two late goals back.
Schalke 04 moved up to sixth in the league thanks to their 3-1 win over Borussia Moenchengladbach.
It was a rough afternoon for former Arsenal goalkeeper Jens Lehmann as he leaked four goals in Wolfsburg’s 4-1 win over Stuttgart.
Eintracht Frankfurt did their flagging league position the power of good with a rampant 4-0 win over Hanover.
On Friday, Borussia Dortmund went fifth in the table after their 1-0 win over Karlsruhe. — AFP
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