Mon, Aug 20, 2007 - Page 19 News List

Bayern go two points clear at the top

AP , FRANKFURT, GERMANY

Bayern Munich's Dutch midfielder Mark van Bommel shoots during the Bundesliga football match against Weder Bremen at the Weser stadium in Bremen, northern Germany, on Saturday. Bayern Munich won 4-0.

PHOTO: AFP

New signings Franck Ribery and Luca Toni each scored to help Bayern Munich beat Werder Bremen 4-0 on Saturday and open a two-point lead after two rounds in the Bundesliga.

Hamit Altintop and Andreas Ottl added the other goals for Ottmar Hitzfeld's team against an injury-depleted Bremen team.

"The main things is that we played well in defense," Hitzfeld said. "In the second half, we didn't allow Bremen to get into the game."

Miroslav Klose, who left Bremen for Bayern during the offseason, got flowers from Werder's management but received a hostile reception from the fans and was on the wrong end of a hard tackle by Naldo less than four minutes into the game. Naldo got a yellow card and Klose did not return for the second half.

Klose injured his knee and could miss Wednesday's friendly against England at Wembley.

"He has a lot of pain. He's very, very questionable for Wednesday," Hitzfeld said.

Bremen, third last season, have only one point from two games, with several starters out with injuries.

"We can't do more right now," Bremen coach Thomas Schaaf said. "What we did in the first half was OK."

A sellout crowd of 42,100 saw the home team waste a couple of early chances and then fall behind when Ribery converted a penalty kick in the 31st minute.

Toni, the Italy World Cup striker who arrived from Fiorentina, earned the penalty when he was brought down by Bremen defender Petri Pasanen.

Ribery faked Bremen goalkeeper Tim Wiese to put Bayern ahead.

Pasanen nearly made up for his mistake when he sent a long-range shot that narrowly missed Oliver Kahn's goal.

Toni scored his second goal in two games when he collected a pass from Altintop and slotted the ball past the helpless Wiese.

Altintop made it 3-0 in the 79th minutes after good play by Ribery, and Ottl completed the victory in the 87th minute.

In the grudge match in Gelsenkirchen, Schalke took a measure of revenge over Borussia Dortmund for the 2-0 loss in May that effectively ended their hopes of winning a first title in nearly half a century.

The two neighboring teams are bitter rivals and Dortmund fans and players made fun of Schalke after that loss -- but it was Schalke fans who celebrated on Saturday.

Schalke took control early when defender Marcelo Bordon headed in at the far post off a free kick by Christian Pander in the 11th minute. Pander himself curled another free kick over the Dortmund wall in the 31st minute, and Gerald Asamoah was left unmarked to head in Schalke's third in the 59th minute.

Nelson Valdez pulled one back for Dortmund, before Kevin Kuranyi scored with another header to make it 4-1.

Dortmund, who bought many new players during the offseason, have lost their opening two matches. They finished the game with 10 men after the sending off of Marc-Andre Kruska in the 85th minute.

Stuttgart played Hertha Berlin without starting strikers Mario Gomez and Cacau, who are both injured.

But the defending champions still went ahead after 15 minutes when Thomas Hitzlsperger drilled home from 18m.

Hertha turned the game after the break, getting the equalizer in the 51st minute when Sofian Chahed converted a contested penalty kick.

Malik Fathi headed Hertha ahead in the 65th minute, and Solomon Okoronkwo completed the upset in the 80th minute.

"We felt too sure of ourselves after the first half," Stuttgart coach Armin Veh said.

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