- Der Klassiker brings out the best in giddy Götze.
- Modeste and Aubameyang setting European standard.
- Leaders Leipzig draw comparisons with Leicester City.
Another fantastic weekend of exceptional Bundesliga entertainment started with RB Leipzig's exciting win against Bayer 04 Leverkusen and went on to provide fans with plenty to talk about, such as Dortmund's Mario Götze finding form in Der Klassiker, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Anthony Modeste's tilt at the European Golden Shoe and the emergence of 3-5-2 as the formation du jour!
bundesliga.com highlights some of the standout moments from around Germany over the weekend...
Gleeful Götze back in the groove
The Bundesliga was once again graced by the Mario Götze grin. That emblematic smile lit up the 24-year-old's face as he embraced Borussia Dortmund coach Thomas Tuchel during Die Shwarz-Gelben's 1-0 triumph against rivals FC Bayern München. Götze's control and precise pass fell perfectly for Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang to prod past Manuel Neuer in the eleventh minute of an intense 115th Der Klassiker at SIGNAL IDUNA PARK. For the first time since returning to BVB after three seasons with Bayern, Götze had a hand in a goal for his club and many believe it may prove a turning point for the Germany international. "Mario set it up superbly," said Aubameyang of the game's opener. "He has been working hard all season and played well today; it was high time he was involved in a goal," Tuchel added.
Watch: Aubameyang on a crazy Klassiker ....
Modeste, Aubameyang in Golden Shoe race
1. FC Köln striker Anthony Modeste recently revealed to Bundesliga.com that he and Aubameyang regularly share text messages. With both on target at the weekend – the Billy Goats' striker scoring in rather fortunate circumstances in his side's 2-1 Rhine Derby win against Borussia Mönchengladbach – is it possible either has mentioned the European Golden Shoe in passing? The Dortmund and Köln marksmen lead the chase for the Bundesliga's Torjägerkanone trophy with 12 goals apiece and have scored more than any other player in Europe's top five leagues. Indeed, only Evgeni Kabaev of Estonia's JK Sillamäe Kalev has more points in the latest European goalscorer rankings than Modeste and Auba. Let’'s not forget that Bayern's Gerd Müller was the last player to bring the Golden Shoe to the Bundesliga with his 40-goal haul in 1971/72.
Three is a magic number
What worked for Dortmund, also proved telling for 1. FC Köln and FC Schalke 04 over the weekend; namely, the use of a back three. A system successfully employed by TSG 1899 Hoffenheim throughout this season proved effective for Köln, who broke a run of four successive defeats at the home of Borussia Mönchengladbach thanks to a 2-1 triumph. Coach of the Billy Goats - Peter Stöger - manned Dominique Heintz, Frederik Hillersborg Sörensen and Mergim Mavraj in a 3-5-2 formation and all excelled in front of the team's other star turn, goalkeeper Thomas Kessler. Schalke also liked the look of 3-5-2, opting for Matija Nastasic, Benedikt Höwedes and Naldo as they triumphed 1-0 away to VfL Wolfsburg. Yet perhaps the most high-profile use of the system came at Dortmund. "Our approach to the match was super on a tactical level," Aubameyang said, while central defenders Marc Bartra, Matthias Ginter and Sokratis Papastathopoulos were widely commended.
Leipzig's Leicester comparison
FC Bayern München's first reverse of the season means they are not on top of the German top-flight standings after the completion of a Matchday for the first time in 39 games, or, since Septmber 2015, if you prefer. And the reason? Ralph Hasenhüttl's recently promoted RB Leipzig and a wondrous opening to their maiden Bundesliga campaign. Bayer 04 Leverkusen were the latest to fall foul of the team from the former East and, after racking up an unprecedented sixth-straight win this term, some are beginning to sense a stunning end to this adventure. "Last year we had the phenomenon of Leicester City in England and Leipzig can go exactly the same way," Dortmund coach Tuchel insisted. "No one could have predicted that we would be the ones bringing this excitement to the Bundesliga," Hasenhüttl added. "It's fantastic for the region. The pubs were certainly full and we were delighted to make a great weekend for our fans," he added.
Watch: Leipzig coach Ralph Hasenhüttl on his team's latest win ...
Schalke desire fuels reversal of fortune
Matchday 5 represented a terrible low for Schalke. A fifth successive Bundesliga defeat left the Royal Blues bottom of the standings with a dismal goal difference of -8. However, since a 2-1 loss against Hoffenheim at the end of September, Die Knappen - or the Miners - have managed a remarkable turnaround and Saturday’s 1-0 victory away to Wolfsburg – secured by Leon Goretzka's 82nd minute strike – represented an eighth win in ten games in all competitions for Markus Weinzierl's team. “We were once again very strong at the back and ended with another clean sheet," the coach said. "The record in the last ten games speaks for us: eight wins, two draws." For Schalke defender Höwedes, a renewed hunger and commitment has helped bring about a change in fortunes. "The win reflected our desire; every player showed that," the 28-year-old explained, adding, "We now want to keep shortening the gap between us and those at the top."
Watch: Bentaleb on Schalke's hot streak ...