Bundesliga roundup: Wolfsburg climbs to third, Wolf shines for Cologne

Wolfsburg climbed above Bayer Leverkusen, Borussia Dortmund and Eintracht Frankfurt to move firmly into contention for Champions League qualification.

Wolfsburg's Yannick Gerhardt (R) celebrates a goal with teammate John Brooks.   -  AP

Wolfsburg rose to third in the Bundesliga on Sunday with a 3-0 win over Freiburg, extending its unbeaten run to five games amid a close fight for the Champions League places.

Wolfsburg climbed above Bayer Leverkusen, Borussia Dortmund and Eintracht Frankfurt to move firmly into contention for Champions League qualification. Wolfsburg is 10 points off leader Bayern Munich and three behind Leipzig in second.

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United States defender John Brooks lashed the ball in for the opening goal in the 21st minute after Freiburg failed to clear a corner. Wout Weghorst made it 2-0 with his 13th goal in 19 Bundesliga games just before halftime, beating defender Keven Schlotterbeck and straining to prod the ball past goalkeeper Florian Muller.

Freiburg midfielder Baptiste Santamaria had a hat-trick of missed chances either side of half-time, sending one header over the bar, another header onto the bar, and hitting a long drive which skimmed the outside of the post.

Soon after, Weghorst could have tightened Wolfsburg's hold on the game but shot against the base of the post from close range. The third goal came eventually when midfielder Yannick Gerhardt knocked in a cross for his first league goal of the season. Freiburg stayed in ninth place.

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Earlier, two goals from Marius Wolf lifted Cologne to a 3-1 win over Arminia Bielefeld in a game between two teams trying to avoid relegation.

Cologne moved up two places to 14th with its second win of 2021, dropping Bielefeld into 16th and the relegation playoff spot.

Wolf gave Cologne the lead with a goal on the rebound in the 10th minute after Ellyes Shkiri's header was palmed away by the goalkeeper at a corner. He added the second 18 minutes later with a powerful low volley off a misplaced headed clearance.

Elvis Rexhbeçaj extended Cologne's lead in the 63rd, finishing off an incisive team move, before Sergio Córdova reduced the deficit for Bielefeld.

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