In the first instalment of this week's double-header, FC Schalke 04 got over the disappointment of last weekend's defeat to FC Bayern Munich by overcoming 1. FSV Mainz 05 3-0 in the Veltins Arena.
FC Schalke 04 3-0 1. FSV Mainz 05
Perhaps more impressively, though, Fortuna Düsseldorf sensationally maintained their record of not having conceded a goal this season, sneaking a 2-0 victory away at struggling Greuther Fürth, who have now lost all three home games this season.
Huub Stevens' side began the match with something of a point to prove after the weekend defeat at home to FC Bayern. After five minutes, Kyriakos Papadopoulos' towering header was cleared off the line before Marco Höger, in for the rested Julian Draxler, forced Mainz keeper Christian Wetklo to acrobatically tip the rebound over the bar.
Farfan on the spot
The home side's pressure began to tell and, after a sustained period of possession outside the Mainz 18-yard box, were given the break they needed when Junior Diaz clumsily felled captain Benedikt Höwedes, resulting in a penalty that Jefferson Farfan converted with aplomb. The home team continued to dominate possession after the break, but struggle to create clear-cut openings, to the audible frustration of the home fans.
It eventually took until the final ten minutes for the result to be put beyond doubt. After Klaas-Jan Huntelaar had uncharacteristically fired over the bar from just yards out, Lewis Holtby popped up to glance in Christian Fuch's cross for his third goal of the season. Substitute Teemu Pukki then added a somewhat glossy finish to the scoreline as he tapped in to make it 3-0, a result that ever so slightly flattered the Royal Blues.
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Greuther Fürth 0-2 Fortuna Düsseldorf
The visitors began as if determined to prove their unbeaten - and unbreached - start to the season was no fluke and attacked their hosts furiously. For their part, Fürth set out intent on rectifying a patchy start and gave as good as they got in midfield, biting into tackles and pressing high up the pitch. While it made for an entertaining opening, chances were initially not forthcoming
As the match wore on, however, Düsseldorf's seemingly impenetrable back line frustrated the hosts and gradually the guests gained the upper hand. Their pressure in the final third proved too much and when Sercan Sararer's poor clearance landed at Johannes van den Bergh's feet, the defender crossed for Oliver Fink, who rose to head home from 15 yards.
The visitors strove to take full advantage of their superiority and gave themselves a two-goal cushion minutes later after an excellent team move. Robbie Kruse pounced on another wayward Fürth pass and raced forward and after some swift passing on the edge of the area, Ken Ilsö found himself free in front of goal and made no mistake, rifling into the bottom left corner.
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