New-dad Herrmann helps keep Gladbach four clear in German league

Borussia Moenchengladbach maintained their four-point lead at the top of the Bundesliga Sunday as new-dad Patrick Herrmann scored twice in their emphatic 3-1 home win over Werder Bremen.

RB Leipzig, who won at Hertha Berlin, and defending champions Bayern Munich, who routed Dortmund 4-0 at the Allianz Arena, had both trimmed Gladbach's lead to just a point with their wins on Saturday.

However, goals by Ramy Bensebaini and Herrmann's double sealed their win to restore Gladbach's four-point lead at the top on Sunday.

Gladbach finished with ten men after Bensebaini was sent off late on for a second yellow card before Bremen midfielder Leonardo Bittencourt netted a late consolation goal deep into added time.

However, it was a weekend to remember for Herrmann, whose wife gave birth to their first child on Friday.

"Before the match, I hadn't noticed that the birth had given me a big boost," said Herrmann, whose wife Sandra gave birth to their son Leonard.

"I'm going to pick them up from the hospital afterwards."

Hosts Gladbach took the lead at Borussia Park with two goals inside 107 seconds.

Midfielder Laszlo Benes whipped in a free-kick and left-back Bensebaini out-jumped the Bremen defence to power home his header on 20 minutes.

The second followed almost immediately from a counter-attack when French striker Marcus Thuram drew Bremen goalkeeper Jiri Pavlenka to present Herrmann with a simple tap-in and an empty net.

Yuya Osako looked to have halved the lead with 28 minutes gone when Bremen's Japan forward finished off a flowing move.

However, the video assistant referee spotted a foul by team-mate Milot Rashica on Denis Zakaria in the build-up and the goal was disallowed.

At the start of the second half, home captain Yann Sommer pulled off two good saves to deny Rashica, and then Germany squad member Maximilian Eggestein at the start of the second-half.

- Wolfsburg keep falling -

The Swiss shot-stopper then saved a penalty attempt by Bremen captain Davy Klaassen on 54 minutes.

Herrmann made it 3-0 when he dribbled at Bremen defender Marco Friedl, who backed off and paid the price when the Gladbach winger fired home on the hour mark.

With time almost up, Bensebaini picked up a second yellow card for a foul on Leon Bittencourt having also been booked for giving away the penalty Klaassen failed to convert.

Then Bittencourt grabbed Bremen's late consolation goal.

The home win means Gladbach will have been top for a month by the time they play their next game at newly-promoted Union Berlin in two weeks with Leipzig second and Bayern in third place.

Bremen, who have one win in their last nine games, drop to 14th and are two points from the relegation places.

Later, mid-table Bayer Leverkusen backed up their mid-week Champions League win over Atletico Madrid with a 2-0 victory at Wolfsburg with goals by Germany winger Karim Bellarabi and Brazilian sub Paulinho.

Having been second in the table in mid October, Wolfsburg are now tenth in the league after four straight defeats in all competitions.

After three Champions League defeats, Leverkusen breathed life into their slim European hopes by shocking Atletico 2-1, which Peter Bosz's team backed up by out-muscling Wolfsburg.

Bellarabi put Leverkusen ahead on 25 minutes by powering into the area and fired home after evading two tackles, Brazilian midfielder Paulinho then came on to add a second goal six minutes into added time.

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