GELSENKIRCHEN, GERMANY - SEPTEMBER 22: Thomas Mueller of Bayern (2nd R) celebrates the second goal with Philipp Lahm (2nd L) and Mario Mandzukic (3rd L) of Bayern during the Bundesliga match between FC Schalke 04 and FC Bayern Muenchen at Veltins-Arena on September 22, 2012 in Gelsenkirchen, Germany. (Photo by Christof Koepsel/Bongarts/Getty Images)

Bundesliga, Week 4: Bayern Beat Schalke, Hamburg Upset Dortmund

Bayern Munich comfortably defeated Schalke to keep pace with Dortmund in the title race.

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Bundesliga: Five Takeaways From Week 4

With Matchday 4 in the Bundesliga in the books, we take a look back at all of the big stories out of Germany.


Werder Bremen Vs. Stuttgart, 2012 Bundesliga: Cacau Scores Late Equalizer

Werder Bremen withstood a barrage from Stuttgart and conceded a late goal before settling for a 2-2 draw.

Bremen were having to defend early and often, but they got their first opportunity on a brilliant counter attack. Kevin De Bruyne played a brilliant one-two with Nils Petersen and beat Sven Ulreich to the near post to make it 1-0.

Stuttgart nearly equalized in the 33rd minute, but Shinji Okazaki's header was just wide. Bremen quickly countered again, and Zlatko Junuzovic poked home a ball from Petersen to make it 2-0 after only 34 minutes.

Marko Arnautovic nearly made it 3-0 just after halftime, but Ulreich pulled off a great save and tipped the ball over the goal. Stuttgart pulled one back just five minutes later. Ibrahima Traore sent in a cross, and Martin Harnik headed the ball into the net.

The visitors grabbed their equalizer in the 81st minute. Traore sent in a corner kick, and Cacau redirected Georg Niedermeier's shot into the net past Mielitz.

The point is only Stuttgart's second of the season. They've been struggling all season to find goals, so hopefully this will be a breakout of some sort for the club.


Hoffenheim Vs. Hannover 96, 2012 Bundesliga: Hoffenheim Finally Get Points

Hoffenheim earned a huge 3-1 victory against Hannover to pick up their first points of the season Sunday afternoon.

In need of something good to happen to them on the pitch, things could not have started worse for Hoffenheim. In the 26th minute, Hannover's Konstantin Rausch sent in a cross, and Matthieu Delpierre tried to head the ball clear. Unfortunately for the defender, the ball beat his goalkeeper and ended up in the back of his own net.

Less than a minute later on the kickoff, Delpierre played a deep ball over the top to left back Fabian Johnson who beat Steve Cherundolo to the ball. Johnson cut in toward goal and his shot beat Ron-Robert Zieler to make it 1-1.

Zieler spent the majority of the match having his goal peppered by Hoffenheim. The standout saves were win he tipped Sebastian Rudy's free kick over the crossbar and a point blank save on Eren Derdiyok.

Hannover withstood the Hoffenheim attack until the 82nd minute when they finally broke the deadlock. Kevin Volland whipped in a cross from the left wing, and Sejad Salihovic dove and headed it on target. Zieler slid over and blocked the shot but not before the ball crossed the line.

Danny Williams would make it 3-1 in stoppage time by easily slotting home a shot after a run from Salihovic freed the US international in front of an open net.


Bayer Leverkusen Vs. Borussia Mönchengladbach, 2012 Bundesliga: Schürrle Misses Penalty To Deny Bayer Win

Bayer Leverkusen and Borussia Mönchengladbach split the points on Sunday morning after a 1-1 draw. Leverkusen had an opportunity to take all three points, but a late penalty miss by Andre Schürrle doomed them.

Gladbach jumped out to a quick lead after only three minutes. Juan Arango played a long ball over the top to Patrick Herrmann. The forward latched onto the ball and beat Bernd Leno with an expert finish. The Bay Arena hadn't even had the opportunity to completely settle into their seats, and the hosts were already down 1-0.

Leverkusen equalized less than ten minutes later when Stefan Reinartz fed Michal Kadlec. The left back turned and curled his shot into the far corner out of the reach of Gladbach goalkeeper Marc Andre ter Stegen.

The hosts kept pushing forward after their goal looking for another, but Gladbach was repeatedly saved by Ter Stegen. Even Filip Daems turned hero when he cleared a Stefan Kießling shot. Leverkusen thought they were going to go on front in the 70th minute when they were awarded a penalty after Roel Brouwers handled the ball in the area. Schürrle missed the resulting penalty.


Wolfsburg Vs. Greuther Fürth, 2012 Bundesliga: Hosts Disappoint In Draw

Wolfsburg scored both goals in their match against Greuther Fürth, but one was an own goal leading to a 1-1 draw.

The own goal came first thanks to Emanuel Pogatetz. Fürth goalkeeper Max Grün booted the ball down the field. Pogatetz was going to leave the ball for his goalkeeper, but Ilir Azemi cut between the two forcing the defender to play the ball. Unfortunately for Pogatetz, the ball struck his shoulder and bounced over the head of Diego Benaglio and into the net giving Fürth the 1-0 lead.

The hosts grabbed a goal just before halftime thanks to summer signing Ivica Olic. Bas Dost headed the ball down to Thomas Kahlenberg, but his shot struck the crossbar. Olic was in the right place at the right time to head the rebound into the back of the net to pull Wolfsburg level.

Diego was solid all match long for Wolfsburg and was creating opportunities all over the field. The best opportunity fell to Vieirinha, but he couldn't do anything with the pass.

Felix Magath's side will need to do better, especially at home, as we move forward on the season. Olic's goal is only the second that they've scored this season out of four matches, and that is simply not good enough.


Fortuna Düsseldorf Vs. Freiburg, 2012 Bundesliga: Düsseldorf Picks Up Fourth Clean Sheet In Scoreless Draw

Fortuna Düsseldorf picked up their fourth clean sheet of the season in a scoreless draw with Freiburg.

Neither side threatened much in the attack with both coaches looking for a semblance of balance between attacking and defense early on in the match. Freiburg controlled the match with their possession of the ball, but they weren't able to beat Fabian Giefer. Fortuna could've taken the lead in the first half on a counter attack, but Andriy Voronin didn't see Dani Schahin running with him and never played the ball.

The second half featured a lot of familiar failings in shooting with neither side truly threatening until late. Substitute Nando Rafael nearly won it for Düsseldorf in stoppage time, but his shot hit the crossbar.

Düsseldorf will take the point and clean sheet and move forward. They have a big "six pointer" next week against fellow promoted team Greuther Fürth. Freiburg need to figure things out in front of goal soon. They're getting a lot of shots, but few of them are on target. They'll host Werder Bremen next weekend.


Mainz Vs. Augsburg, 2012 Bundesliga: Mainz Picks Up First Win

Mainz picked up a big 2-0 victory for their first win of the season and doomed Augsburg to just one point out of their first four matches.

Both goals for Mainz came in the first twenty five minutes, and they held on for the remainder of the match for their first clean sheet of the season.

Andreas Ivanschitz opened the scoring after just ten minutes when he beat Mohamed Amsif with a low, hard shot. Adam Szalai nearly made it 2-0 six minutes later, but he was stonewalled inside the six yard box by Amsif. Szalai got his revenge on Amsif in the 25th minute and turned in a pass from Nicolai Müller for the goal.

Augsburg will be disappointed to have controlled the match for the most part but only managing three shots on target. This is the third time they've been shutout in four matches this season. Markus Weinzierl is going to have to figure something out and figure something out soon.


Hamburg Vs. Borussia Dortmund, 2012 Bundesliga: Hamburg Pull Off Huge Upset

Hamburg picked up a massive 3-2 victory over champion Borussia Dortmund. The victory should be enough to give manager Thorsten Fink more time at the helm in Hamburg.

Hamburg received a very quick goal thanks to Heung Min Son. After only two minutes, Rafael van der Vaart's cross was headed past Roman Weidenfeller by the South Korean midfielder.

The early goal removed some early pressure off of the shoulders of the Hamburg attack, but BVB came out swinging. The rest of the half belonged to BVB as they poked and prodded looking for a goal that never came.

The goal did come immediately after the restart when Robert Lewandowski laid the ball off to Ivan Perisic, and the Croatian's shot beat Rene Adler. Remarkably, the goal didn't slow down Hamburg, and they came right back with one of their own. Van der Vaart was again the orchestrator, and he found Ivo Ilicevic whose left footed shot hit the back of the net just eight minutes later.

Hamburg struck against four minutes later with the prolific Son scoring his second of the match. His shot from outside the penalty area beat Weidenfeller, and Hamburg were suddenly two up on the defending champions.

That lasted all of one minute before Ivan Perisic scored his second of the match to pull BVB back within one goal. He received a pass from Lukasz Piszczek in the center of the penalty area before beating Adler.

BVB pushed forward even more as the clock began ticking closer and closer to full time, but Hamburg somehow held on without allowing another goal and secured all three points.

The loss is huge for BVB as they now sit five points behind Bayern Munich (and Eintracht Frankfurt for that matter) in the Bundesliga table. The win is Hamburg's first of the season after some disastrous performances in their first three matches. All the credit in the world goes to Fink for getting his team prepared for this match and earning a huge victory.


Schalke Vs. Bayern Munich, 2012 Bundesliga: Kroos, Müller Lead Bayern To Victory

ayern Munich received second half goals from Toni Kroos and Thomas Müller and eased to a 2-0 victory over Schalke in Gelsenkirchen.

They finally broke through the resolute Schalke defense in the 55th minute. Müller held the ball up at the top of the penalty area allowing Kroos to make a run in behind the two centerbacks. Müller played the ball back to him, and Kroos slotted it past Lars Unnerstall to give Bayern the 1-0 lead.

The lead was doubled just two minutes later by Müller. He received the ball out wide on the right and made Christian Fuchs look silly with a nutmeg before coolly beating Unnerstall with a shot. Two minutes prior the match was tied, but Schalke now needed two goals for just a point.

Schalke brought on Ibrahim Afellay and Tranquillo Barnetta looking for an offensive spark that never seemed to come. Bayern came close again when Arjen Robben was played in behind the Schalke defense, but Unnerstall wisely saved his chip shot.

Manuel Neuer was never truly tested in the second half of the match and picked up his third clean sheet against his former club since joining in the summer of 2011.

With the victory, Bayern jump back on top of the Bundesliga table on goal differential over Eintracht Frankfurt. Schalke now sit five points behind Bayern in the table.


Schalke Vs. Bayern Munich Live, 2012 Bundesliga: Scoreless At The Half

The referee blew the whistle to end the first half in Gelsenkirchen just seconds after the clock struck 45:00. Perhaps, he was as enthralled with the first half as we all were?

The best opportunity of the first half fell to Schalke's Jefferson Farfan. He received a pass from Lewis Holtby and did a few fancy moves outside of the penalty area before ripping a shot on target. Bayern goalkeeper Manuel Neuer reacted quickly and tipped the ball over the goalpost.

Bayern will be wondering what happened to the Mario Mandzukic that they had in the first three matches of the season. He rests for the first 70 minutes against Valencia midweek in the Champions League, and he loses all semblance of the form he had? Yeesh.

Schalke's defense has played well to this point. While Bayern have had more possession, Schalke are limiting their ability to penetrate deep and get any true quality opportunities against Lars Unnerstall.


Nürnberg Vs. Eintracht Frankfurt, 2012 Bundesliga: Frankfurt Continue Perfect Start

Eintracht Frankfurt moved to the top of the Bundesliga table with a 2-1 victory over Nürnberg on Friday evening. The win for Frankfurt is their fourth out of four matches this season and is nothing short of remarkable for the newly promoted side.

Frankfurt were forced to make two early subs --- just twenty minutes into the match --- when Pirmin Schwegler and Olivier Occean were both injured. Martin Lanig and Erwin Hoffer replaced them.

Despite all of this, the visitors struck first. Takashi Inui's corner was headed out of the penalty, but it was immediately played right back into the area by Anderson. Hoffer ran onto the ball and put his shot into the far corner beating Raphael Schäfer to make it 1-0

Pekhart had the opportunity to equalize ten minutes later, but his header was tipped over the bar by Kevin Trapp. Hiroshi Kiyotake was next to test the goalkeeper from distance, but Trapp made a good diving save to his right.

Timm Klose comes close to leveling for Nürnberg in the 56th minute, but his header from Kiyotake's corner is cleared off the line by Sebastian Jung.

Frankfurt doubled their lead just two minutes later thanks to the brilliant Inui. The Japanese midfielder dribbled from the left side across the top of the penalty before placing his shot into the corner past Schäfer. Remarkably, Frankfurt looked to be on their way to their fourth win in four matches and a trip to the top the of the table.

Dieter Hecking, looking for more offense from his side, brought off defender Timothy Chandler for forward Sebastian Polter in the 70th minute. It didn't take long for Polter to get involved and he headed in a free kick from Kiyotake five minutes later to pull back a goal for Nürnberg.

Nürnberg came close to equalizing in the 80th minute after some fancy footwork on the endline from Timo Gebhart, but Mike Frantz's shot with the outside of his foot went high and wide.

Polter had the best opportunity in the remaining 10 minutes, but his sliding shot went wide of the target.

Nürnberg had played well in recent weeks coming into the match, and they thought they had a good shot at taking Frankfurt down a bit from their perch. They fought back late but were unable to find that second goal to earn a point.

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