Summary

  • Leverkusen score three second-half goals to down Frankfurt.
  • Bayer third in the table with four games to go.
  • Frankfurt's Niko Kovac bemoans missed chances at 0-0.

After showing their gritty side in downing Eintracht Frankfurt, third-placed Bayer 04 Leverkusen have already turned their attentions to a blockbuster trio of fixtures against fellow European candidates FC Schalke 04, Hertha Berlin and Borussia Mönchengladbach.

Bayer 04 Leverkusen 3-0 Eintracht Frankfurt

Goals: 1-0 Kampl (70'), 2-0 Brandt (76'), 3-0 Bellarabi (89')

Kevin Kampl (Leverkusen midfielder): "I'm really happy to be able to score so soon after coming on. Yesterday I didn't even know if I was going to be in the squad. It was a little thank you to the coach for giving me the chance, but it [the win] wasn't as clear-cut as the scoreline suggests. Frankfurt played well for long spells and had a few chances in the second half to score. It wasn't an easy win, we had to fight and that's what made the difference. The aim is to finish third and hopefully we won't finish any lower."

Kevin Kampl scores with his first touch. © imago / Team 2

Christoph Kramer (Leverkusen midfielder): "We had to run a lot in the first half: we couldn't find any gaps, but our attacking quality shone through in the end. If Schalke slip up against Munich, that gives us the psychological advantage next week. We've got three crackers coming up. We're third with four games to go and that's our objective."

Julian Brandt (Leverkusen midfielder): "We're in a great place in the table. I hope our run continues. We're two points clear of Hertha, but we've got three really tough games against Schalke, Hertha and Gladbach to come. If we can take points from those, then we should be OK. They're going to be close games. They're all good sides, but if we continue as we've been playing, it's going to be tough to beat us […] I don't know what the diagnosis is for Chicharito, but he's a tough cookie."

Read: Chicharito injury concern for Leverkusen

Julian Brandt competes with Makoto Hasebe. © gettyimages / Lars Baron

Roger Schmidt (Leverkusen head coach): "It was a close game. We had problems creating clear-cut chances. Frankfurt worked hard at the back and had chances on the break. It wasn't as polished a performance as in the last few games. It could have gone differently. If Sonny Kittel had scored, it would have been really complicated if we'd have gone behind. Then we went ahead. I didn't know Kevin Kampl could hit the ball like that. You can't always be sure 1-0 is enough, but we did really well after that. Still, I don't think 3-0 is a fair reflection of what was a very close game."

Niko Kovac (Frankfurt head coach): "Congratulations to Bayer. It's not easy for us: like last week, my team fought well for 70 minutes. My team caused Leverkusen problems. We had two huge chances before they scored, but we couldn't take them. That was the difference. Top sides like Leverkusen don't mess about and put them away. My team gave everything, but weren't rewarded. The situation is worse for us now than it was."

Marco Russ (Frankfurt defender): "We had chances and were on a par with Leverkusen until they scored. They've always got the quality to score, but it's tough to take. We have to win our games and hope the teams above us don't pick up points like they did today. They're all cup finals for us. There are fewer games and fewer points. It's getting closer and closer."