Leipzig go top with Stuttgart win as Leverkusen stumble

FRANKFURT: RB Leipzig climbed to the top of the Bundesliga after Dani Olmo’s second-half strike earned them a 1-0 victory at VfB Stuttgart on Saturday.

Bayer Leverkusen dropped to third following a 2-1 defeat at Eintracht Frankfurt as action resumed in the league following a brief Christmas break.

Emil Forsberg was denied from the penalty spot by a superb Gregor Kobel save midway through the first half, but Leipzig broke through in the 67th minute when Angelino’s deflected cross fell to Olmo at the back post and he tucked in a cushioned volley.

Leipzig are on 31 points after 14 games, one ahead of Bayern Munich, who face second-from-bottom Mainz on Sunday, and three clear of third-placed Leverkusen.

Leverkusen missed their chance to go top earlier in the day when Frankfurt came back from a goal down to win 2-1 with an Amin Younes strike and an Edmond Tapsoba own goal.

Nadiem Amiri had given visitors Leverkusen the lead with an outrageous piece of individual skill, taking a touch to control the ball before deftly back-heeling it between the legs of keeper Kevin Trapp in the ninth minute.

Younes fired Frankfurt level in the 22nd minute and they took the lead nine minutes into the second half when Japanese midfielder Daichi Kamada rifled the ball into the box and Tapsoba turned it into his own net.

At the other end of the table, bottom side Schalke 04 are one game away from equalling Tasmania Berlin's long-standing Bundesliga record of 31 matches without a win after falling to a 3-0 defeat at Hertha Berlin on Christian Gross’s debut as head coach.

Gross was appointed on Dec. 27, becoming Schalke’s fourth manager of the season, but he could not make an instant impact as Hertha's Matteo Guendouzi curled home a finish in the first half before Jhon Cordoba and Krzysztof Piatek struck after the break.

Schalke have now gone 351 days and 30 games without a league victory and, if they fail to beat Hoffenheim next Saturday, they will match the league record set in 1965-66.

Union Berlin kept themselves in the top four when Taiwo Awoniyi scored one goal and made the other in a 2-0 win at Werder Bremen, who had a goal on the stroke of halftime ruled out by the video assistant referee for offside.

Freiburg netted three first-half goals as they climbed into the top half of the table with a convincing 3-1 win over Hoffenheim, and Augsburg edged out FC Cologne with an Iago goal making the difference in a 1-0 away victory.

A goal by Breel Embolo in the 58th minute gave Borussia Moenchengladbach a 1-0 win away to Arminia Bielefeld in a game that they dominated in terms of goal-scoring chances without being able to add to their tally.

Borussia Dortmund host Wolfsburg on Sunday.