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Saturday, 27 February 2021

Halland, Sancho star as Dortmund denies Leipzig top spot

Schalke remains bottom of the league with seven points from 15 games after its first victory

AP , Saturday 9 Jan 2021
Haaland
Haaland (C) celebrates scoring his second goal. Photo: AFP
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Erling Haaland scored twice for Borussia Dortmund to deny Leipzig top spot in the Bundesliga with a 3-1 win in Saxony on Saturday.

Leipzig was hoping to take advantage of Bayern Munich's 3-2 loss at Borussia Moenchengladbach the day before but it remained a point behind the league leader after slumping to its first home defeat of the season.

Neither side impressed in a cagey first half before Dortmund seized the initiative in the second.

Jadon Sancho followed up his first league goal of the season against Wolfsburg last weekend with the opener in the 55th minute. Marco Reus set up Sancho with his heel and the England forward fired inside the left post.

Haaland struck the crossbar and Dani Olmo responded by hitting the post for Leipzig.

Haaland went one better in the 71st when Sancho set him up to score with a header after some fine team interplay from Dortmund. Then Reus sent the Norwegian through to round goalkeeper Peter Gulacsi and seal the win in the 84th.

Substitute Alexander Sorloth's 89th-minute strike was too little, too late for Leipzig.

Dortmund climbed to fourth, three points behind Leipzig, after its third win in four games with new coach Edin Terzic.

SCHALKE HOPPE TRICK

American forward Matthew Hoppe scored a hat trick in Schalke's first victory for almost a year, helping his club avoid matching Tasmania Berlin's old Bundesliga record for consecutive winless games.

Schalke's 4-0 win over visiting Hoffenheim ended the Gelsenkirchen-based club's 30-game wait since its last league win on Jan. 17, 2019.

Tasmania had gone 31 straight games without a win during the 1965-66 season.

The 19-year-old Hoppe hadn't scored before for Schalke, but he opened his account with a brilliant chip over Oliver Baumann in the 42nd minute, then rounded the Hoffenheim goalkeeper in the 57th, and completed a game to remember with his third goal in the 63rd. All three were set up by Amine Harit, who rounded off the scoring in the 80th.

The goals will have been greeted with relief in the Berlin borough of Neukolln, where Tasmania fans and officials had been hoping for a Schalke win to ensure their own club's notoriety remained intact.

``Without this negative record, nobody in Germany or Europe would speak about Tasmania Berlin,'' club chairman Almir Numic told local broadcaster Radio Eins during the week.

Schalke remains bottom of the league with seven points from 15 games after its first victory.

Bo Svensson's debut as Mainz coach ended in a 2-0 defeat to visiting Eintracht Frankfurt, Freiburg routed relegation-threatened Cologne 5-0 at home, Bayer Leverkusen drew at home with Werder Bremen 1-1, and Union Berlin and Wolfsburg drew 2-2.

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