Borussia Mönchengladbach tasted victory in the Bundesliga for the first time in two months as goals from Lars Stindl and Stefan Lainer - plus a Frederik Rönnow own goal - saw them ease past bottom side Schalke.
Desperate to snap their seven-game winless streak since beating Borussia Dortmund - the team their head coach Marco Rose will join in the summer - Gladbach began with greater intent than their hosts, taking the lead on 15 minutes. Marcus Thuram just about kept the ball in play as he charged to the byline, and when William scuffed his clearance, skipper Stindl was on hard to rifle an unstoppable effort into the top corner. Schalke coach Dimitrios Grammozis made a tactical tweak by replacing William with Bastian Oczipka, and his side briefly steadied the ship, but Gladbach should really have added to their lead before half-time. However, Alassane Plea couldn't get on the end of Lainer's inviting cross, while Thuram and Florian Neuhaus both hit wide of the mark. The Royal Blues might even have equalised on 41 minutes after a good break, but Kerim Calhanoglu's fierce effort was well saved by Yann Sommer.
Gladbach clearly had no desire to give Schalke an avenue back into the game, and also started the second half at a high tempo. Matthias Ginter headed wide from Christoph Kramer's cross, before French duo Thuram and Plea combined nicely, the latter forcing home keeper Rönnow to tip his rising effort over the bar. Lainer eventually got that all-important second goal for the Foals, finding himself completely unmarked at the near post and heading home Jonas Hofmann's pinpoint corner delivery. That took the wind out of Schalke's sails, and their morale sank even lower when the unfortunate Rönnow scrambled the ball into his own net as he tried to keep out a header from Nico Elvedi. Gladbach saw it out comfortably enough, and might even have added gloss to the scoreline - but a fourth goal from substitute Breel Embolo was correctly ruled out for offside. The Foals thus boosted their European hopes while leaving Schalke 12 points from safety at the bottom.
- Stindl is Gladbach's top scorer this season with 11 goals, and has now equalled his career-best tally for a single campaign from 2016/17.
- Nine of those 11 goals from the Borussia captain have come on the road.
- Lainer has scored all three of his Bundesliga goals away from home, and all from dead ball situations.
- Hofmann has now laid on 10 goals this season, putting him level with Joshua Kimmich and Filip Kostic in joint second in the Bundesliga assists chart.
- Schalke have conceded a league-high five own goals so far this term.
- The Royal Blues have won just one of their last 42 Bundesliga outings, stretching back to a 2-0 home win over Gladbach on 17 January 2020.
Watch: Huntelaar: “We have problems with scoring and defending”
Schalke: Rönnow - Becker, Mustafi, Thiaw - William (Oczipka 20'), Serdar, Mascarell, Kolasinac (c), Calhanoglu - Hoppe (Huntelaar 76'), Raman (Harit 64')
Unused subs: Langer, Stambouli, Schöpf, Mercan, Aydin, Bozdogan
Out: Bentaleb (groin), Boujellab (ankle), Fährmann (rib), Ludewig (foot), Mendyl (ankle), Nastasic (calf), Paciencia (knee), Sane (knee), Skrzybski (knee), Uth (thigh)
Coach: Dimitrios Grammozis
Gladbach: Sommer - Lainer (Beyer 89'), Ginter, Elvedi, Bensebaini - Kramer, Neuhaus (Zakaria 89') - Hofmann (Wolf 83'), Stindl (Embolo 83') (c), Thuram (Lazaro 77') - Plea
Unused subs: Sippel, Herrmann, Wendt, Jantschke
Coach: Marco Rose
Watch: Sommer: "We had good quality on the pitch"