Berlin, Feb 1 (IANS) Robert Lewandowski’s brace moved German football giants Bayern Munich 2-0 past an uninspired Hoffenheim while Wolfsburg were held to a 1-1 draw by courageous Cologne to complete the 19th round of the Bundesliga.
Front-runners Bayern Munich continue their relentless run as they earned their sixth consecutive victory on Sunday in Bundesliga to remain atop the standings. Meanwhile, Hoffenheim’s relegation worries increased after suffering their ninth loss of the season, reports Xinhua.
The hosts controlled the proceedings immediately with the opening whistle whereas Hoffenheim focussed on a well-positioned defence. It was thus just a matter of time before the dominant ‘Bavarians’ would open the scoring. Especially after Thomas Mueller’s and Arjen Robben’s efforts approached Hoffenheim’s goal area dangerously in the opening period.
As a result, Bayern turned their dominance into a tangible reward as Lewandowski made use of Douglas Costa’s square pass to tap home from close range (32nd minute). Hoffenheim remained harmless although new arrival Andrej Kramaric tested Bayern custodian Manuel Neuer before and after the break.
After the restart, Josep Guardiola’s men continued their one-way football while Hoffenheim’s goalkeeper Oliver Baumann protected his side from getting whitewashed. However, Baumann was helpless again when Lewandowski sealed the deal and his brace (65th). Philipp Lahm passed into the path of Lewandowski, who lobbed the ball over onrushing Baumann, extending his tally to 19 goals.
Bayern kept it bowling but they were unable to triple the lead although Arturo Vidal rattled the right post with a long-range effort (71st). It was nonetheless a powerful demonstration by the German record champions, who got 29 shots on target while Hoffenheim were only able to get five attempts goal-wards.
With the result, the ‘FCB’ restored their eight-point advantage to runner-up Dortmund whilst Hoffenheim stay in drop zone with a seven-point gap to safety.
Elsewhere, Wolfsburg dropped points against Cologne following a 1-1 draw. The ‘Wolves’ broke the deadlock through Julian Draxler, who slotted home a cross by Vieirinha (67th) before Cologne’s Anthony Modeste had all the time and space to benefit on Leonardo Bittencourt’s through ball, to level the scores eight minutes later.
Both teams remain in their positions in the standings. Wolfsburg stay seventh place and Cologne ninth.