Wolfsburg see off Frankfurt in season opener
Last season`s Bundesliga runners-up VfL Wolfsburg opened their new league campaign with a 2-1 win over Eintracht Frankfurt on Sunday as all three goals came in the opening 20 minutes.
Berlin: Last season`s Bundesliga runners-up VfL Wolfsburg opened their new league campaign with a 2-1 win over Eintracht Frankfurt on Sunday as all three goals came in the opening 20 minutes.
Dieter Hecking`s side, who finished 10 points behind champions Bayern Munich last season, flew out of the blocks at the Volkswagen Arena with Croatia winger Ivan Perisic and Dutch striker Bas Dost putting them 2-0 up.
Wolves were rewarded for some patient build-up play as new striker Max Kruse fired in a brilliant cross which Perisic headed home at the far post on 13 minutes.
They doubled their lead four minutes later after calamitous Frankfurt defending in the area as Kruse poked the ball across the face of goal and Dost buried his shot from close range.
Frankfurt fought back with defensive midfielder Stefan Reinartz taking advantage of some sloppy Wolfsburg defending to pull a goal back for the visitors on 19 minutes.
It proved to be the end of the scoring, although both sides had second-half chances as Perisic in particular went close.
Later, VfB Stuttgart lost 3-1 at home to Cologne as Anthony Modeste converted a second-half penalty and Simon Zoller doubled the visitors` lead two minutes later before Stuttgart`s Daniel Didavi netted a late spot-kick.
Japan striker Yuya Osako came off the bench to claim Cologne`s third goal just before the final whistle by tapping home Modeste`s pass.
After Bayern kicked off the new season with a 5-0 hammering of Hamburg on Friday night, Borussia Dortmund threw down the gauntlet to the defending champions with a 4-0 drubbing of Borussia Moenchengladbach on Saturday.
New signing Douglas Costa was outstanding on Bayern`s left wing and slotted the final goal after Thomas Mueller scored twice, while centre-back Medhi Benatia headed the opening goal in an impressive display.
However, Dortmund`s new coach Thomas Tuchel began his tenure in emphatic style as his side ran riot at home to Gladbach with left-winger Henrikh Mkhitaryan scoring twice as Marco Reus and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang also netted.Earlier, Bayer Leverkusen had warmed up for their Champions League play-off clash at Lazio on Tuesday with a 2-1 comeback win against Hoffenheim.
Leverkusen face Lazio away on Tuesday, with the return on August 26, for a place in the Champions League group stage and 19-year-old Julian Brandt came off the bench to score their winner at home to Hoffenheim.
Newly-promoted Ingolstadt celebrated their debut in Germany`s top flight with a 1-0 win at Mainz as Austria international Lukas Hinterseer scored their second-half winner.
Fellow new boys Darmstadt finished their first game in the Bundesliga for 33 years with a 2-2 draw against Hanover as fleet-footed winger Marcel Heller scored twice and the hosts twice hit the crossbar.
Schalke picked up their first win under new coach Andre Breitenreiter with a 3-0 victory at Werder Bremen.
The hosts conceded an unlucky first-half own goal when Czech defender Theodor Gebre Selassie beat Schalke striker Klaas-Jan Huntelaar to the ball, only for his clearance to loop over Werder goalkeeper Felix Wiedwald and into his own net.
Cameroon striker Eric Choupo-Moting converted a pass from his international team-mate Joel Matip on 68 minutes before Huntelaar finished off a superb counter-attack on 85 minutes by 19-year-old substitute Leroy Sane, who had just come on.
Meanwhile, Paraguay striker Raul Bobadilla penned a contract extension at Augsburg until 2018 only to be sent off just 45 minutes into the new Bundesliga season on Saturday in his team`s 1-0 defeat at home to Hertha Berlin.