Hannover - Bayer 04 Leverkusen kept up their assault on the UEFA Champions League spots after dispatching Hannover 96 3-1 in the HDI Arena.
Leverkusen train their sights
All the game's goals fell in a second half dominated by the visitors, who found the net through Stefan Kießling, Heung-Min Son and Karim Bellarabi, with Ceyhan Gülselam's header a mere consolation for the hosts.
Despite a fortnight’s break, Leverkusen began the match intent on finding the net after failing to do so in their last outing. Hakan Calhanoglu fired in a pair of long-range efforts early, while Kießling could only find the side-netting after being teed up by Bellarabi in the tenth minute. Hosts Hannover, themselves in excellent form, hit back with efforts of their own from Lars Stindl and Joselu. Indeed, their dominance of the ball led to the best chance ten minutes before the break after a mix-up between Bernd Leno and Roberto Hilbert, when the latter was required to clear off the line.
Leverkusen began the second period with a bang, however, scoring twice within 13 minutes of the restart. Kießling netted the first from close-range after Gonzalo Castro's low cross, before Son doubled the lead with a fantastic finish from just inside the box. Hannover hit back on the hour mark through Gülselam, who headed in Hiroshi Kiyotake's free-kick. However, when Bellarabi broke free in the 73rd-minute and coolly slotted home past Ron-Robert Zieler, the points were on their way to Leverkusen after a dominant second-half display.
Line-ups and statistics