Bundesliga: Dortmund, Mainz take big wins

Berlin, Feb 29 (IANS) Borussia Dortmund came from behind to beat a 10-man Hoffenheim 3-1 while Yunus Malli’s brace moved FC Mainz 3-1 past Bayer Leverkusen in their respective Bundesliga matches.

Dortmund extended their winning streak to three Bundesliga games as the “BVB” bounced back with three late goals to reap the 17th win of the season on Sunday evening. Meanwhile, Hoffenheim suffered their 11th loss in 23 matches to remain in the drop zone, reports Xinhua.

Hoffenheim staged a resilient performance on the road and were able to neutralize Dortmund’s offensive efforts in the first half.

Hoffenheim opened the scoring with 25 minutes into the game as Dortmund goalkeeper Roman Buerki parried Kevin Volland’s 20-meter hammer into the path of Sebastian Rudy, who tapped in from close range at the far post.

The visitors gained momentum and had the chance to double the lead but Dortmund keeper Buerki denied Kevin Volland at the half-hour mark. The hosts got their first shot on target with 43 minutes played after Hoffenheim custodian Oliver Baumann had to defuse Marco Reus free-kick curl with a diving save.

However, a controversial straight red card for Hoffenheim’s Rudy, following a foul play on Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, initiated Dortmund’s comeback after the restart. Nevertheless, the hosts had to wait until the 80th minute before Henrikh Mkhitaryan levelled the scores against 10-men Hoffenheim following a corner.

The “BVB” kept it bowling and doubled the lead only five minutes later to grab the 2-1 lead through substitute Adrian Ramos, who headed home Lukasz Piszczek’s pinpoint cross into the box.

Hoffenheim were unable to put up some resistance while the hosts extended the lead to 3-1 after Aubameyang slotted home his 22nd goal in as many games, in the dying seconds of the game.

With the result, runner-up Dortmund remain in the hunt of front-runners Bayern Munich, who sit eight points ahead. Hoffenheim remain trapped in the Bundesliga bottom, on the 17th place and with four points to safety.

Mainz upset Bayer Leverkusen with a 3-1 victory on home soil to jump into the top six of the Bundesliga standings.

The hosts started offensively minded into the game to create the first chances of the match. With 14 minutes into the game, Mainz rewarded themselves with the opener as Yunus Malli lobbed the ball over onrushing Leverkusen goalie Bernd Leno.

Leverkusen tried hard to respond but it were again the hosts who scored as Jhon Cordoba’s right-footed effort beat Leno for the two-goal lead in the 32nd minute.

Mainz were not done with the scoring as Yunus Malli sewed up his brace after a converted handball penalty in the 58th minute. With the 3-0 lead Mainz retracted allowing Leverkusen to score their consolation through Javier Hernandez, who made it 1-3 in the 65th minute.

After sealing the 11th win of the season Mainz jump onto the 5th place whilst Leverkusen slipped to the 6th position.

Elsewhere, Monchengladbach held Augsburg to a two-all-draw. Augsburg’s Alfred Finnbogason cancelled out Monchengladbach’s opener through Raffael before Caiuby secured the 2-1 lead for Augsburg. The host had the last laugh as Fabian Johnson’s equalizer secured the Monchengladbach one point on home soil.

Frankfurt and Schalke shared the points as well albeit following a goalless draw. Hence both teams extended their winless runs. Frankfurt wait for their first win since five games while Schalke wrapped their last victory three games ago.

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