With Bremen's nine-game unbeaten run under serious threat in Ingolstadt, the in-form Kruse rolled up his sleeves and, inside the final nine minutes, hit the net a further three times to fortify the northern German side's current status as the Bundesliga's form team.
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Top facts - Max Kruse
- Kruse has now bettered his personal best for a season, which stood at 12 in 2013/14 for Gladbach.
- He scored a hat-trick for only the second time in his career – his first was in October 2015 for Wolfsburg.
- Kruse became the first Bremen player to score four in a game since Frank Neubarth against Fortuna Düsseldorf in February 1986.
Watch: Kruse reflects on his four goals: