• Two players each from Bayern, Dortmund, Leipzig and Leverkusen make the TOTW.
  • Darmstadt, Hoffenheim and Schalke also represented.
  • Doubles for Lewandowski and Calhanoglu ensure their places.

FC Bayern München, RB Leipzig, Borussia Dortmund, TSG 1899 Hoffenheim and Bayer 04 Leverkusen all dominate the Matchday 17 Team of the Week following key victories.

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Michael Esser (SV Darmstadt 98) - Darmstadt needed something special to snap an eight-game losing streak and Esser delivered it. The Bundesliga's bottom club were under pressure early on against Borussia Mönchengladbach but after 10 minutes the home goalkeeper produced a game-changing and potentially season-altering save. Raffael looked certain to score from six yards out, only for Esser to make a breathtaking reaction stop. It helped the 29-year-old earn his second clean sheet of the season.

Darmstadt 'keeper Michael Esser was instrumental in ending his side's losing run against Gladbach. © gettyimages / Matthias Hangst


Marcel Halstenberg (RB Leipzig) - All eyes were on Leipzig on Saturday to see if they could bounce back from their Matchday 16 drubbing at FC Bayern München. Granted, Eintracht Frankfurt goalkeeper Lukas Hradecky's red card on three minutes certainly helped, but Halstenberg ensured that Leipzig would drive home their advantage. First his vicious free-kick led to Marvin Compper's opener and then the Leipzig left-back's shot was turned in by Frankfurt's Jesus Vallejo for 3-0.

Ömer Toprak (Bayer 04 Leverkusen) - Toprak set the tone in Leverkusen's 3-1 win over Hertha Berlin with a vital opening goal. The Turkey international reacted quickly to a 12th minute free-kick and even beat striker Javier 'Chicharito' Hernandez to the punch to fire home the loose ball. Toprak has now scored in each of the last five Bundesliga seasons.

Lukasz Piszczek (Borussia Dortmund) - Dortmund required some inspiration when they were pegged back by 10-man SV Werder Bremen on Saturday. Piszczek has been a regular source of it in attack this season and the Poland international coolly lifted the ball over Bremen substitute keeper Felix Wiedwald with 20 minutes remaining. The right-back's match-winning strike brought his tally to a career-high four league goals for the season.

Dortmund right-back Lukasz Piszczek is having a personal-best season in front of goal. © gettyimages / Stuart Franklin


Franck Ribery (FC Bayern München) - Bayern were not at their best in difficult conditions at SC Freiburg and Ribery came on with 19 minutes left to try to help force a winner. He did just that with a nicely weighted cross that Robert Lewandowski finished off in devastating style. It was the Frenchman’s sixth assist in 12 league games.

Naby Keita (RB Leipzig) - Keita was moved further forward against Frankfurt to compensate for the absence of suspended attacking midfielder Emil Forsberg. The 21-year-old Guinean enhanced his reputation further by constantly threatening Frankfurt and setting up Timo Werner’s crucial second goal.

Nadiem Amiri (TSG 1899 Hoffenheim) - In the 2-0 win at FC Augsburg, Amiri's vision and pinpoint passing enabled Hoffenheim to continue their remarkable unbeaten run. The 20-year-old released Sandro Wagner for the opening goal and was also involved in the build-up for Andrej Kramaric's second.

Hakan Calhanoglu (Bayer 04 Leverkusen) - Calhanoglu played a part in all three goals in Leverkusen's win over Hertha as his free-kick led to Toprak's opener. The Turkey international then converted a penalty, before volleying in late on. It was the first time Calhanoglu had scored twice in a Bundesliga game for Leverkusen and he’s now their top scorer with six league goals.

Watch: Calhanoglu explains his amazing goal celebration with Ömer Toprak


Andre Schürrle (Borussia Dortmund) - Schürrle took his chance in the absence of leading scorer Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, getting his first league goal for Dortmund by calmly rounding Werder keeper Jaroslav Drobny after only five minutes.

Guido Burgstaller (FC Schalke 04) - Schalke desperately needed three points against second bottom FC Ingolstadt 04 and Burgstaller's dream debut helped the Royal Blues snatch a 1-0 victory. The former 1. FC Nürnberg striker was introduced at half-time and was in the right place to sweep home in the 92nd minute.

Robert Lewandowski (FC Bayern München) - Lewandowski got Bayern level against Freiburg, before scoring a stunning winner in injury time. It was the fifth time the Polish striker had netted twice in a Bundesliga game this season and he has now scored 135 Bundesliga goals – making him the second most prolific foreign scorer in Bundesliga history.

Watch: Lewandowski on his relief at a hard-earned three points to open 2017.

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