Munich - There were goals, penalties - both scored and missed - and red cards aplenty in a dramatic afternoon of Bundesliga football on Saturday with the eagerly-anticipated debut of Rafael van der Vaart for Hamburg failing to materialise and Eintracht Frankfurt moving to the top of the table in emphatic style.
SV Werder Bremen 2-0 Hamburger SV
Thomas Schaaf's Werder Bremen came out on top in the first northern derby of the campaign as an Aaron Hunt penalty and a Nils Petersen strike gave them a comfortable 2-0 win over Hamburger SV, whose new recruit Rafael van der Vaart watched on from the stands. It was the home side who dominated proceedings in the first half and Rene Adler was forced into a superb save to divert Nils Petersen's header onto the crossbar. The away side then had Adler to thank again just before the break as he sprang to his left to keep out Aaron Hunt's penalty after Eljero Elia had been fouled by Jeffrey Bruma.
Adler finally beaten
HSV may have survived the first half, but their luck ran out when Bremen were given a second penalty after Dennis Aogo this time committed an offence inside the penalty area. Hunt made no mistake to beat Adler at the second time of asking. Until then, it had been all Werder and they doubled their lead when a defensive mistake let in Petersen to slot in his side's second of the afternoon. Thorsten Fink's team attempted a fightback and came close through Petr Jiracek, who had two decent efforts cleared off the line. Bremen were deserving winners of the first derby of the season, however, and now have their first win of the season on the board. HSV will need new signing van der Vaart firing on all cylinders when he makes his long-awaited second debut for the club having seen the extent of the club's problems from the stands inside the Weserstadion.
Bayer 04 Leverkusen 2-0 SC Freiburg
Bayer Leverukusen recovered from their opening day defeat to Eintracht Frankfurt with a hard-fought win over SC Freiburg. The home side started brightly and took the lead after eight minutes when Gonzalo Castro nodded in after Oliver Baumann could only parry Stefan Kießling's header. Freiburg were 2-0 winners in this fixture last season, but the Werkself were in no mood for a repeat of that scoreline. Kießling was inches away from connecting to Castro's teasing cross, and he then drew a smart save from Baumann shortly before the break.
Freiburg may have come out for the second half with a gameplan, but things got worse for Christian Streich's men as they fell 2-0 behind. Castro was again involved, as his corner was met by a thumping header from defender Philipp Wollscheid, which left Baumann with no chance. Thereafter, the home side were content to keep Freiburg at arm's length, which they did with ease. Karim Bellarabi missed a late chance to make it 3-0, but it was a satisfactory afternoon's work for Leverkusen, with Spanish defender Daniel Carvajal particularly impressive at right-back.
FC Schalke 04 3-1 FC Augsburg
A bit of a slow burner early on, the game sprang to life in the tenth minute when Aristide Bance broke free and saw his goalbound effort spin behind for a corner off Kyriakos Papadopoulos. Schalke were struggling to find the sort of tempo that stretched Hannover 96 to great effect last time out, with long balls down the flanks failing to find their targets. Just like last week, though, Schalke made the most of a right-wing corner as Papadopoulos powered Farfan's pinpoint delivery into the net to make it 1-0 after 33 minutes. The returning Farfan provided a consistent outlet for his back four, but Augsburg's Bance was just as much of a threat at the other end, just about edging an intriguing first-half duel with goalscorer Papadopoulos.
Schalke quick out of the blocks
Schalke needed less than 60 seconds to stretch their lead after the restart as Jermaine Jones darted into the box to fire low and hard past the helpless Simon Jentzsch before Augsburg's Knowledge Musona wasted a glorious opportunity to reduce the arrears five minutes later. That was as good as it got for the Bavarians as Jones struck the post and Klaas-Jan Huntelaar rose to meet a Farfan cross for his second in as many games in the 72nd minute. Augsburg did manage a consolation, though, substitute Torsten Oehrl stroking across the line after Lars Unnerstall could only parry Daniel Baier's cross.
1899 Hoffenheim 0-4 Eintracht Frankfurt
Chasing their first win of the campaign, 1899 Hoffenheim started the brighter of the two, with Boris Vukcevic almost profiting from a breakdown in communication in the Frankfurt rearguard. The home side were moving the ball freely, but Kevin Volland was unable to make the most of Roberto Firmino's slide-rule pass when through on goal. However, with the hosts looking increasingly uneasy defensively, Tim Wiese was rather fortunate to see his initial parry drop wide of the post after cannoning back off Olivier Occean. The warning signs were clear to see, and Hoffenheim's back four duly buckled as Alex Meier's 18-yard strike flew in off Marvin Compper in the 38th minute, before Pirmin Schwegler's swerving drive made it 2-0 four minutes later.
'Deflated' best described the mood amongst the Hoffenheim players as Eintracht hit cruise control in their quest for a third goal after the break, with Tobias Weis picking up a deserved booking after taking a frustrated swipe at Sebastian Rode in the 55th minute. Meier should have made it three on the hour mark, but he lashed his shot wide. A bad afternoon got worse for the home side when substitute Sejad Salihovic - on the pitch for just four minutes - and Stephan Schröck received their marching orders for two bookable offences in the 70th and 73rd minute respectively. Meier got on the scoresheet from the spot with eight minutes remaining, before substitute Martin Lanig made it four with virtually the last kick of the game.
Bernie Reeves and Christopher Mayer-Lodge