The GOALMANIA campaign got off the perfect start as the Bundesliga once again proved itself to be the most exciting, goal-laden and thrill-a-minute league in world football.
Robert Lewandowski had a hand in not one, not two, but five of Bayern Munich’s six goals against Augsburg as he blew the goalscorers’ race wide open by joining Borussia Dortmund’s Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang on 24 goals at the top of the charts.
Elsewhere, Freiburg and Werder Bremen played out a seven-goal thriller which produced the unlikeliest hat-trick scorer since Mainz’s Danny Latza on Matchday 15, as Thomas Delaney achieved a feat he likely never dreamt he would in his professional career.
It was edge-of-your-seat action from start to finish and bundesliga.com is on hand to round-up all the action from Matchday 26 so far…
The Allianz Arena was treated to yet another Lewandowski masterclass on Saturday as the Pole had a hand in five of Bayern’s six goals against Augsburg. However, the league leaders' performance was anything but a one-man show as Franck Ribery, Thiago Alcantara and Thomas Müller all dazzled in a glittering display that underlined that, 15-point gap or not, Bayern aren’t about to take their feet off the pedal.
Watch: Lewandowski on Bayern's goalscoring exploits
Ear-splitting noise? Check! Full-blooded tackles? Check! Derby drama? Check! While the bragging rights had to be shared on the day, the ‘Mother of all Derbies’ did not disappoint. It was a fiercely-contested fixture down to the final seconds and a baptism of fire for any debutant. Twenty-year-old Thilo Kehrer didn’t let his first Revierderby get the better of him though, as his first-ever Bundesliga goal cancelled out Aubameyang’s earlier effort, underling how bright his future really is.
Watch: Shinji Kagawa on his unselfish square ball to Aubameyang.
When Max Kruse struck from 30 yards to open the scoring there was a sense something special was in the air in Freiburg. Six goals later and Werder had gone a sixth game unbeaten for the first time in over two years! Yet it was Delaney who once again stole the show as the Dane scored the first hat-trick of his professional career in the latest in a string of sensational performances.
Watch: Thomas Delaney delights in his hat-trick heroics!
Thrills, spills and comebacks! The six-pointer between Leverkusen and Wolfsburg had it all, including a seven-minute hat-trick from Mario Gomez and a late equaliser from Kai Havertz - Bayer's youngest ever Bundesliga goalscorer. Die Werkself looked to be on course for victory, but four goals in the final 10 minutes made for a stunning end to the game as both sides had to settle for a share of the spoils.
No Timo Werner? No problem. Leipzig returned to winning ways in emphatic fashion as they moved onto 52 points for the season – a tally that would have been good enough for a fifth-placed finish in the previous campaign. Naby Keita struck twice, while Willi Orban, Emil Forsberg – who was exceptional throughout - got in on the goalscoring act as Leipzig heaped further misery on bottom-of-the-table Darmstadt.
Watch: Emil Forsberg not content settling for just a single goal
Julian Nagelsmann’s first full season at the Hoffenheim helm is the stuff of legend. The Sinsheim side remain on course to clinch European football for the first time in the club’s history after producing a come-from-behind win over ten-man Hertha courtesy of Andrej Kramaric’s brace and Niklas Süle’s wonder strike. It was a victory that saw them move above Dortmund and into third place.
Watch: Niklas Süle opens up about his stunning long-range effort.
GOALMANIA was always going to feature a bit of last-minute drama and Hamburg duly delivered against Cologne. In a hard-fought encounter, HSV’s gut check produced three pivotal points in their battle to beat the drop as Lewis Holtby played the role of heartbreaker with his 92nd-minute strike. The Red Shorts are now unbeaten on home soil in eight games – their longest streak in seven years!
Ingolstadt made one of the tightest relegation fights in recent history that bit more interesting on Sunday as they boosted their own hopes of staying up while sucking their opponents into the thick of the danger. Levin Öztunali's goal was sandwiched between Romain Bregerie's opener and Florent Hadergjonaj's first Bundesliga goal - which could go down as one of the biggest fluke's of the season.
Yann Sommer provided the heroics as ten-men Gladbach clinched a point from their entertaining, albeit goalless, encounter with Frankfurt. The Swiss custodian made a string of fine saves to quell the Eagles’ most threatening advances, before putting the cherry on the cake of a fine performance by denying Marco Fabian from the spot to ensure the Foals narrowed the gap on sixth-placed Cologne by a further point.
Watch: Marco Fabian wants to bounce back in midweek.