Bundesliga leaders Bayern Munich eased past Schalke 04 2-0 on Saturday to make it four wins out of four league matches for the champions while their opponents languish bottom of the table.
Goals from James Rodriguez and a second-half Robert Lewandowski penalty lifted Bayern to 12 points, two ahead of second-placed Hertha Berlin, who crushed Borussia Moenchengladbach 4-2 thanks to a Vedad Ibisevic double.
"My team dominated for 90 minutes and allowed nothing in our own half," Bayern coach Niko Kovac told reporters. "We created many chances but scored too few goals. But overall it was a great performance. We saw a really, really good Bundesliga game."
— FC Bayern English (@FCBayernEN) September 22, 2018
James put the visitors in front after eight minutes, powering his near-post header from a Joshua Kimmich corner past Schalke keeper Ralf Faehrmann. David Alaba rattled Faehrmann`s crossbar a little later with a curled free-kick as Bayern kept up the pressure and Schalke, last season`s runners-up, stayed toothless.
Pre-season title contenders Schalke have now lost all four Bundesliga matches and are placed last on the league table. Pressure on coach Domenico Tedesco has been mounting for weeks following their disastrous start with a heated exchange with his player Franco di Santo after he was substituted. "I am very angry because we had discussed it before the game," Tedesco said of Di Santo`s substitution. "He was emotional. We will discuss this internally but it is only normal that I am disappointed by him."
— FC Schalke 04 (@s04_en) September 22, 2018
James should have added another goal five minutes after the restart but somehow managed to fire wide in front of an open goal. But he did make amends for his earlier miss when he earned a 64th-minute penalty which Lewandowski coolly converted.
Earlier, Borussia Dortmund`s Christian Pulisic scored an 84th-minute equaliser to rescue a 1-1 draw at Hoffenheim. The American, who got the winner at Club Brugge in a 1-0 Champions League group stage victory, tapped the ball home after good work from Marco Reus to earn his team a point.
Brazilian Joelinton had put the hosts ahead on the stroke of halftime with the visitors reduced to 10 men following Abdou Diallo's sending off for a foul on Andrej Kramaric. However, Pulisic timed his run to perfection converting effectively off Reus` cutback.
Dortmund are currently placed third on the league table with eight points, two behind undefeated Hertha. Werder Bremen, with 39-year-old striker Claudio Pizarro making his first start of the season, squandered a two-goal lead but still beat hosts Augsburg 3-2 thanks to Davy Klaasen`s 75th-minute winner after a goalkeeping error, to move up to fourth.