Schalke slump to defeat, Köln edge seven-goal thriller

Cologne - FC Schalke 04 slipped to a third away defeat on the bounce by losing to SC Freiburg, while 1. FC Köln and FC Augsburg both picked up impressive victories on Saturday afternoon.

SC Freiburg 2-0 FC Schalke 04

bundesliga.com rounds up Saturday afternoon's action on Matchday 11...

SC Freiburg pulled away from the relegation zone with their second win in a row, a 2-0 victory at the expense of an FC Schalke 04 who have lost all their away games under Roberto Di Matteo.

Christian Günter scored his first goal for Freiburg to give them a lead that Jonathan Schmid doubled in a dominant second half for Christian Streich's men, who fully deserved the points at the Schwarzwald-Stadion.

Ferocious Freiburg

Günter benefitted from a fortunate deflection to Admir Mehmedi's cross to stroke home past Ralf Fährmann and put his team into the lead and bag his first goal in 47 games. It was also a good omen for his side: they had not lost a game after scoring first this season, while Schalke had not managed to overturn a deficit.

A reaction was expected all the same from the Royal Blues, yet it was Freiburg who continued to have more zip and zest to their game, with Fährmann diverting Jonathan Schmid’s effort onto the underside of the crossbar. Christian Streich's men kept up the assault, though, and they were rewarded when Schmid found the top left-hand corner with a beautifully placed effort to seal Freiburg's win.

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TSG 1899 Hoffenheim 3-4 1. FC Köln

1. FC Köln picked up a priceless away win by edging past TSG 1899 Hoffenheim in a 4-3 thriller in Sinsheim.

Adam Szalai put the hosts in front, but strikes from Pawel Olkowski, Matthias Lehmann and Anthony Ujah turned the game on its head. A Roberto Firmino brace restored parity, but Olkowski's second late on saw the Billy Goats walk away with maximum points.

Goal fest

Hoffenheim could barely have made a better start with Szalai sweeping his shot inside Timo Horn's near post after 120 seconds. The equaliser followed just 120 seconds later, though, with Olkowski netting his first Bundesliga goal with a finely-placed shot from the edge of the area. There was scarcely time to draw breath in the WIRSOL Rhein-Neckar Arena, as Lehmann curled a free-kick around the wall and into the corner, before an efficient Köln made it three through Ujah, with only their fourth shot of the game.

It looked bleak for the hosts, but in Roberto Firmino they always have a goal threat, and the Brazilian bagged his fourth Bundesliga brace to bring Hoffenheim level before the interval with two in five minutes: a low shot followed by a glancing header. After the break it was Hoffenheim who looked the more likely side to grab the next goal, but their profligacy was punished when Olkowski netted the winner with another fine strike from the edge of the area.

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FC Augsburg 3-0 SC Paderborn

FC Augsburg moved above SC Paderborn in the Bundesliga table thanks to a comfortable 3-0 home win at the SGL Arena.

Tobias Werner beat his good friend Lukas Kruse twice to net his club record 18th and 19th Bundesliga goals for Augsburg, before Jan-Ingwer Callsen-Bracker completed the scoring.

Friendship on ice

The depth of Werner's friendship with Kruse, forged during their days together when Kruse played for the Fuggerstädter, could be seen in the fact Kruse's family was invited to spend the weekend as guests at the Werner household. Ever the professional, Werner said that friendship would be put to one side on the field of play, and he was true to his word as be became his club's leading scorer in the top flight, ahead of Sascha Mölders, by beating Kruse from Halil Altintop's pass.

Paderborn had beaten Hertha Berlin in impressive fashion last weekend – their fourth win of the season - but they fell further behind when Werner grabbed his second, heading in from captain Paul Verhaegh's cross. Another header, from Callsen-Bracker, made it three with Werner this time the provider, as the Bavarians collected their fifth win of the campaign.

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