Alexander Meier scored his second-ever Bundesliga hat-trick as a rip-roaring second-half performance saw Eintracht Frankfurt beat VfL Wolfsburg 3-2.
In view of Saturday's results, Wolfsburg knew a win would be particularly valuable, and they appeared keen not to miss an opportunity to close in on the Champions League places. An enterprising Julian Draxler was unhappy not to earn a penalty under the challenge of Stefan Aigner in the area, but he channelled his frustration into creating chance-after-chance for the Wolves. One of them finally led to a long-overdue goal for Dante, who stuck out a leg to turn Ricardo Rodriguez's free-kick in at the far post.
The second half was a different story entirely. With Marco Fabian on for his debut, the Eagles developed an attacking spirit of their own and Aigner almost levelled immediately, with Diego Benaglio responding to his first test of the afternoon. Meier turned and volleyed Aigner's header in to bring the hosts level and it was the same combination which put Frankfurt ahead with Meier rasping his shot into the roof of the net. Andre Schürrle levelled matters late on, but Meier was on hand to score a last-gasp winner after Fabian's cross was fumbled out to him.
Man of the match
Meier needed just three sights of goal to bag his hat-trick. The prolific midfielder has now scored five in his last three Bundesliga games for the Eagles, and has ten for the season.
Wolfsburg need to look no further than their away form to explain why they are not inside the top four. With just one win, and only six goals scored, they have worst record of all Bundesliga sides on their travels, and that contrasts with the third-best record at home this season.
- Szabolcs Huszti was making his return to the Bundesliga after 624 days – he last played for Hannover 96 in a 3-2 win over SC Freiburg on 10 May 2014, scoring to make it 1-0 in that game.
- Dante's goal was his first for Wolfsburg and his first in almost two years, his last coming on 15 February 2014 for Bayern in a 4-0 win over Freiburg.
- Meier scored with his only three shots of the game, scoring his second Bundesliga hat-trick.
Frankfurt: Hradecky - Hasebe, Zambrano, Abraham, Oczipka - Russ, Stendera - Aigner (90+2' Ignjovski), Huszti – Meier (c) – Seferovic (46' Fabian)
Wolfsburg: Benaglio (c) - Vieirinha, Naldo, Dante, Rodriguez - Träsch, Guilavogui – Caligiuri (62' Jung), Draxler (86' Schäfer) – Kruse (78' Bendtner) - Schürrle