RECAP: WEEKEND GERMAN ACTION
Michael Bradley and Borussia Mönchengladbach were unable to stop their slide to the bottom of the league standings while Matt Taylor continued his scoring run with a pair against Wiesbaden.
FC Kaiserslautern 3 - 0 Borussia Mönchengladbach
Michael Bradley played the full 90 minutes in Borusia Mönchengladbach's midfield as the team continued their descent towards relegation with a tough loss at Kaiserslautern on Saturday.
The teams kept the game a tight affair with neither able to convert their multitude of chances until the hosts broke things open in the final 20 minutes of regulation.
Christian Tieffert was the lucky recipient of a botched headed clearance by Filip Daems with 19 minutes to go, and looped his shot from several yards outside the top of the area just inside the far corner of Logan Bailly's goal to give 'Slautern the lead.
They needed another 12 minutes to effectively put the game out of reach, as Alexander Bugera hit a perfect through ball to Adam Nemec, who split his defenders and blasted his shot from the edge into goal.
The Red Devils then added the exclamation point five minutes later after Jan Moravek shot a low cross to Srdjan Lakic in the middle of the penalty area, who was entirely uncontested as he took his time before driving his low shot to the left of goal.
After the loss the Foals drop to last place in the standings, now two points and a vastly inferior goal differential below the surface. Things won't get any easier for them in the near future, as they will next host FC Bayern on Saturday.
1899 Hoffenheim 4 - 0 Hannover 96
Steve Cherundolo was a 90-minute man in Hannover's defense while DaMarcus Beasley made his first appearance for the team in more than one month, however neither was able to help them stop a four-goal onslaught by Hoffenheim on Sunday.
Hannover put themselves in a difficult position after just 18 minutes when Manuel Schmiedebach was shown his second yellow for a reckless elbow to the head of Hoffenheim's Sebastian Rudy, forcing the team to play a man down for the final 70-plus minutes.
They did hold strong nearly until halftime, but were done in when Icelandic international Gylfi Thor Sigurdsson hit a awkwardly looping shot from the edge of the area that bounced over the line just moments before the pause, which, much to the displeasure of Hannover, looked to have been set up by a clear handball by a fellow Hoffenheim player.
Sigurdsson netted his second of the game three minutes past the restart when a foul of Chinedu Obasi by Hannover defender Christian Schulz allowed him to step up to the spot and convert to the right of goal.
He then turned provider three minutes after that, giving Hoffenheim a three-goal lead as sailed in a free kick from the right flank which Demba Ba was all to happy to head in under the reach of Florian Fromlowitz.
Hoffeheim then completed the rout with 19 minutes left in regulation as Sebastian Rudy shoot several defenders on the right side before feeding the ball to Peniel-Kokou Mlapa, who had no issues to nail his low blast from straight ahead.
Beasley took the field in replacement of Konstantin Rausch with 13 minutes left in hopes of pushing the visitors to a consolation goal, but was unable to provide any spark in the end, giving the Hoffe the huge shut-out victory.
Hannover drop to sixth place with the heavy defeat and have a tough road ahead, with league leaders Dortmund visiting on Sunday and a trip second-place Mainz six days later.
Karlsruher SC 2 - 4 TSV 1860 Munich
Luis Robles had a rough afternoon in goal for Karlsruhe on Saturday, having to pick the ball out of his own net four times as visiting 1860 Munich earned a huge win.
1860 forward Kenny Cooper is still in the final stages of recovering from a broken ankle and did not take part in the festivities.
Following a largely event-free opening, 1860 took the lead in eye-popping fashion in the 40th minute when keeper Gabor Kiraly fired a long goal kick perfectly into the path of Benjamin Lauth, who spectacularly hit his one-timed shot in mid-air from the right side of the area inside the far post to leave the hosts stunned.
The lead was doubled ten minutes into the second half when the Karlsruhe defense dealt poorly with a corner, with Kai Bülow's low shot passing just off Robles' fingertips and into the net.
Bülow quickly went from hero to goat when he brought down Karlsruhe defender Stefan Müller with a poorly timed tackle just inside the area. While Alexander Iashvili's initial attempt did beat keeper Kiraly, the referee saw several players jump early and ordered a re-take.
Kiraly initially saved the subsequent kick, however parried it straight into the path of Iashvili to tap in to the practically open net to bring one back for the hosts.
Their hopes were just short lived, though, with Lauth netting his second highlight reel goal of the game on the hour mark, taking a long crossfield pass on the left flank from Stefan Bell, storming into the area and driving his low shot inside the far post well out of Robles' reach.
Karlsruhe kept it close when Stefan St. Müller headed in a corner from Marco Engelhardt in the 63rd minute, but the afternoon would belong to the visitors, with Dominik Stahl finding target with his long header in the final ten minutes to secure the three points for his team.
The loss drops Karlsruhe to the edge of the bottom three in 15th place, and was the last straw for upper management who fired head coach Markus Schupp following the game. The team next faces a Monday-night visit to Osnabrück.
Rot Weiss Ahlen 4 - 1 SV Wehen Wiesbaden
Matt Taylor was again an offensive spark for Ahlen, netting two first-half goals as they notched their second straight win in a blow-out over visiting Wehen Wiesbaden on Saturday.
Sebastian Ghasemi-Nobakht opened the scoring early for Ahlen when he drove a low shot from the top edge of the area inside the right post after 15 minutes, however Nils Ole Book gifted Wiesbaden the equalizer nine minutes later as his attempted clearance of a free kick into the box flew into his own net.
All of the game's action was early, with Fabian Schönheim giving his marching orders in the 26th minute for a second yellow card in a four-minute span, then Taylor put his team ahead for good two minutes afterwards when he hit his short shot from near the right post past several defenders and into the net.
He netted his second of the game and fifth through eight games four minutes later, taking advantage of a missed attempt by the keeper to hit from dead-center into an open net.
Marcus Piossek then completed the scoring on the stroke of halftime with the team's fourth and final goal, giving the visitors no way back into the game.
While Wiesbaden prevented any further damage on the scoreboard in the final 45 minutes, they saw the ejection of Canadian international Nikolas Ledgerwood with 12 minutes left, leaving them with just nine men on the field for the final run-out.
The win lifts Ahlen to 12th place, now a full six points safe from the previously-looming relegation zone. They face a tough visit to sixth-place Jahn Regensburg in their next outing on Saturday.
Daniel Williams played the final nine minutes for Freiburg as they were blown away by a second-half surge from FC Bayern in their 4-2 loss on Friday.
Ricardo Clark was a 92nd minute substitute for Eintracht Frankfurt on Saturday as they had no problems to take all three points on their trip to FC St. Pauli with their 3-1 win.
Jermaine Jones is out with an ankle injury suffered in midweek German Cup action and did not take part in Schalke's 1-0 loss at home to Bayer Leverkusen on Sunday.
Amaechi Igwe is still working his way back to full strength from a knee injury and did not suit up for Ingolstadt as they were beaten 3-1 on the road by Hertha Berlin.
David Yelldell will be starting in the nets for Duisburg on Monday night when they take a visit to Fortuna Düsseldorf, looking to climb back into second-place in the 2. Bundesliga standings.