Leverkusen the biggest losers on matchday 25

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RESULTS Sat March 6: FC Köln 1-1 Bayern München, Werder Bremen 2-2 Stuttgart, Hamburger SV 1-0 Hertha BSC, Eintracht Frankfurt 1-4 Schalke 04, SC Freiburg 1-2 Hannover 96, VfL Wolfsburg 4-1 VfL Bochum, Borussia Dortmund 3-0 Borussia M’gladbach Sun March 7 Nürnberg 3-2 Bayer Leverkusen, Hoffenheim 0-1 FSV Mainz

If ever you thought the Bundesliga was boring and predictable then this weekend’s results will surely make you re-assess.

Granted, Bayern München are leading the way, but not before being given the fright of their lives by their Cologne-loving ex-striker Lukas Podolski.

And just when I was starting to think Leverkusen could go unbeaten all season… how predictable.

This weekend’s action, in short: Comfortable wins for Wolfsburg and Schalke maintained their respective climbs up the league table, while Hannover felled fellow strugglers Freiburg and similarly relegation-threatened Hertha so nearly held their own against high-flying Hamburg (but eventually lost).

Bremen and Stuttgart played out a 2-2 draw while a Lu Lu Lu Lukas Podolski piledriver very nearly punished leaders Bayern.

A 3-0 win for Dortmund against rivals Monchengladbach heightened the formerh’s credentials for a Champions League spot, and a hard-fought 1-0 victory for Mainz at Hoffenheim can’t go without a special mention.

Game of the weekend, and indeed result of the weekend - or perhaps season – came courtesy of super FC Nürnberg with their defeat of previously unbeaten Bayer Leverkusen.

Trailing 3-0 before the hour mark, the Werkself must have feared a roasting against their lowly opponents. Yet despite an honourable fightback to take the deficit from three goals to one, a late loss of discipline cost them a chance of stealing a difficult point from the Easy Credit Stadium.

Nürnburg well and truly ‘done a job on them’, and three points will help them massively in their bid to avoid the drop.

Who would have guessed it, with the home club previously having failed to win at the ground in nearly five months!?

Nürnburg's Maxim Choupo-Moting and Mike Frantz celebrate their win

Although, being down at the wrong end of the table, there’s got to be some bad news for Nürnberg, right? Yup; their win was marred by a season-ending injury to on-loan defender Breno. He’ll be back to parent club Bayern pretty shortly to begin his rehabilitation.

After such a monumental push in the first two thirds of the season, are the wheels finally coming off the Bayer bandwagon in their quest for a first ever Bundesliga title?

Toni Kroos, their combative midfielder, called the defeat “a blow in the title race,” but The Fundesliga would suggest it’s still all to play for in those top three positions, especially with Schalke performing every bit as well as Bayern in recent weeks.

That’s exactly what Bild is reporting, calling the title race a Dreikampf (three horse race) as well as suggesting that Franck Ribéry has, once again, opened his big mouth and claimed Real, Barca and Chelsea are all pursuing him for a big money transfer in the summer.

Just throwing this one out there, but with Steven Pienaar still having not signed a contract extension with Everton (he’s got just under 18 months left on his current one), could he be the perfect replacement for Ribéry?

He’s flourished at Goodison over the past couple of years and would surely be available for less than €10 million.

After whoring himself out all last summer (not literally, you understand) it seems like it’s only a matter of time before Ribéry ups sticks and leaves Munich; but will he get his dream move to Madrid?

Going back to the Pienaar suggestion for a second here… I mean, who else could Bayern bring in to replace the French international that isn’t already on the books of one of the more fanciful big boys of European football?

It would be quite humorous, though, if nobody came calling for Ribéry in the summer, and it might yet happen. Watch this space, I guess.

What’s going on in Germany this week, then? Schalke entertain Stuttgart in what promises to be a tasty encounter on Friday evening, with Leverkusen v Hamburg is arguably the pick of the bunch from the weekend’s fixtures.

Before that, though, the return legs of the Champions League last 16 stage get underway.

Bayern are taking a 2-1 advantage to Florence to face Fiorentina, while Stuttgart must wait until next week to see what they can do against the mighty Barcelona at the Camp Nou.

In the Europa League, meanwhile, Germany is still represented by Hamburg, Bremen and Bundesliga champions (not for much longer, mind) Wolfsburg. A decent week’s football, it would seem, is assured!

Midweek fixtures:

Champions League last 16 second leg:
Fiorentina (1) v (2) Bayern München

Europa League round of 32 first legs:
Hamburger SV v Anderlecht
Valencia v Werder Bremen
Rubin Kazam v VfL Wolfsburg

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