Mainz stay top of Bundesliga, Ribery injured in Bayern win

Berlin: Bundesliga leaders Mainz 05 beat Cologne 2-0 to stay top, while Bayern Munich face an anxious wait to hear the extent of Franck Ribery`s injury from their late 2-1 win at Hoffenheim.

Having been stunned by a goal after just 36 seconds, Bayern hit back as Ribery`s fierce long-range shot was followed up by Thomas Mueller on 62 minutes before Munich defender Daniel van Buyten`s winner in added time.

But Mueller`s equaliser could be costly as Ribery had to be helped off with what looked like a painful ankle injury on 64 minutes as he fell awkwardly after taking his shot.

With Bayern facing Basel in next Tuesday`s Champions League match, Munich coach Louis van Gaal will be hoping the Frenchman can face the Swiss side.

"It doesn`t look good, it looks like it is a bad ankle injury and we will have to wait and see what the tests show," said a grim-faced van Gaal.

Bayern got off to the worst possible start when they conceded the fastest goal in Hoffenheim`s history.

The defending champions were stunned as midfielder Sebastian Rudy beat Munich`s defence on the right and squared for Hoffenheim`s Veded Ibisevic to score before Bayern hit back.

German daily Bild reported in its Wednesday edition that Van Gaal was set to sign a year`s extension to his contract to stay with Bayern until 2012.

Having coached Bayern to the German league and cup titles last season, van Gaal is in his second season with Munich.

"Nothing is signed. All I can say is that we are very happy with the work of Louis van Gaal," said Bayern`s sporting director Christian Nerlinger.

The result in Hoffenheim lifts Bayern up to seventh while the hosts are second.

Mainz picked up their fifth straight win to keep their 100 percent record and open a five-point lead with their win over Cologne.

The hosts took the lead when subsititute midfielder Lewis Holtby`s header beat Cologne goalkeeper Faryd Mondragon on 72 minutes before he scored his second in added time.

Champions League side Werder Bremen slumped to their second consecutive league defeat when they were beaten 4-1 at Hanover.

Bremen face defending holders Inter Milan next Wednesday in Italy, but Thomas Schaaf`s side are lacking in confidence after following up Saturday`s defeat at home to Mainz with this loss in Hanover.

An own-goal by Germany defender Clemens Fritz after just 10 minutes put Bremen on the back foot until captain Torsten Frings converted a penalty after 36 minutes to put his side level.

Hanover reclaimed the lead when Ivory Coast striker Didier Ya Konan scored in the 53rd minute before defender Christian Schulz scored the second on 79 minutes.

To add insult in extra time, Hanover`s Norway striker Mohammed Abdellaoue added the fourth to put his side third and Bremen 12th.

In Wednesday`s games, bottom side Schalke are at fourth-placed Freiburg and are desperate to avoid their fifth straight defeat.

Bureau Report

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