- Modeste scored his second and third goals of the Bundesliga season.
- Bittencourt also on target on Friday night.
- Köln top for the first time since 1996.
Köln started brightly at their RheinEnergieSTADION and came close to taking the lead twice inside the first 20 minutes with Modeste finding the outside side-netting before Marcel Risse pulled a low drive wide. Modeste broke the deadlock soon after, forcing Risse's corner past Freiburg goalkeeper Alexander Schwolow. Bittencourt doubled the Billy Goats' lead minutes later, tapping in Yuya Osako's pass after a swift counter-attack, and Modeste completed his brace when he headed home Frederik Sorensen's throw-in with half-time approaching.
Freiburg coach Christian Streich threw striker Nils Petersen on for centre-back Caglar Söyüncü at half-time in an attempt to shake up the game, and the Black Forest club looked better for it. Köln goalkeeper Timo Horn - back after an adductor injury with his Olympic silver medal in hand - looked sharp, though, when he denied Florian Niederlechner from close range with 20 minutes to go. Petersen saw a shot blocked in the dying minutes but Köln held on for the clean sheet.
Man of the Match
Modeste - scorer of 15 Bundesliga goals last term - was the biggest thorn in Freiburg's side. The Frenchman held the ball up well and was unlucky not to score more after his team-high five shots on goal.
Köln are looking as coherent a proposition as they have done since their promotion three years ago. Top for 24 hours at least, the North Rhine-Westphalia club were impressive in holding VfL Wolfsburg to a 0-0 draw last time out, and will be rightly confident ahead of the trip to FC Schalke 04 on Wednesday after a superlative performance here.
- Köln are top for the first time since the 1996/97 season, when they beat Freiburg on Matchday 3.
- The Billy Goats are, alongside FC Bayern München, the only club yet to concede this season.
- Streich suffered his first defeat against Köln, having won each of his previous four encounters with the Karnevalsverein.
- Modeste is still chasing his first career hat-trick since November 2010, when he fired Girondins de Bordeaux past AC Arles-Avignon in France's Ligue 1.
Köln: Horn - Sörensen, Mavraj, Heintz, Hector - Höger, Lehmann (c) - Risse, Bittencourt (Zoller 50') - Osako (Olkowski 65') - Modeste (Jojic 80')
Coach: Peter Stöger
Freiburg: Schwolow - Stenzel, Gulde (Niedermeier 78'), Söyüncü (Petersen 46'), Günter - Höfler - Bulut (Haberer 65'), Frantz (c), Grifo - Philipp, Niederlechner
Coach: Christian Streich