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Football | Germany

Anthony Modeste © Gallo Images

Five things we learnt from Bundesliga



Bayern Munich extend their lead as RB Leipzig's collapse continues while Cologne striker Anthony Modeste keeps on scoring.

Here are five things we learned from the 25th round of Bundesliga matches this weekend:

Mind the gap, Bayern!

Bayern finish the weekend 13 points clear in the table and it seems a matter of when, not if, their fifth consecutive title is confirmed.

Leipzig's title challenge has evaporated, so the question is how big will Bayern's winning margin be in May.

When they won the treble in 2012/13, Bayern finished 17 points clear of nearest rivals Dortmund, then extended the margin to 20 in taking the 2013/14 league title in Pep Guardiola's first season.

It was just 11 in 2014/15 and only five last season, but unless RB Leipzig rediscover their winning ways, the margin is set to again hit double figures.

RB Leipzig's collapse

After their shock 1-0 defeat at home by Wolfsburg last weekend, RB Leipzig's collapse continued on Saturday with a 3-0 defeat at Werder Bremen.

Having started their debut Bundesliga season with a record 13-match unbeaten run, Leipzig's title challenge has ground to a halt with just seven points in their last seven games.

There are clear reasons. Their bench is no longer a threat, like in the first-half of the season, when five goals came from replacements, like forwards Oliver Burke and Davie Selkie, but that figure has dropped to nil in 2017.

RB kept six cleansheets before Christmas yet have conceded at least one goal per game in 2017.

Playmakers Yussuf Poulsen, currently injured, Naby Keita, who was suspended, were badly missed in Bremen and their creativity has dropped.

"We have to hit the reset button and use the international break," said Leipzig concerned coach Ralph Hasenhuettl.

XL goals for Modeste

Having scored 22 of Cologne's 37 goals this season, Modeste is an XL reason why they are currently sixth, amongst next season's Europa League places.

Modeste needed just under half an hour to score a hat-trick -- his second of the season -- in Saturday's 4-2 home win over Hertha Berlin.

His last two goals, on 37 and 63 minutes, came when he finished off counter attacks with ice-cold finishing -- despite his shorts slipping down on both occasions.

"They were too big! I'll have to tell our kit man that he should lay out an XL pair not an XXL next time," quipped Modeste.

His shorts are not the only thing oversized about the Frenchman.

He has a contract until 2021, but Cologne have reportedly rejected an offer of €50 million from Chinese side Tianjin Quanjian.

Hertha's horrible away form

Having been as high as third, and on course for a first Champions League appearance since 1999/2000, Hertha Berlin's defeat at Cologne left them fifth as their horrid away form continues.

Curiously, Hertha have the league's best home record with 10 wins, one draw and one defeat at Berlin's Olympic Stadium.

But they have just two away wins this season and lost all of their last six games on the road.

After a dreadful first-half display, Hertha were 3-0 down at the break in Cologne before outscoring their hosts 2-1 in the second half with goals by Vedad Ibisevic and John Anthony Brooks.

"We have to make changes, because every single away game -- I don't know if it's the travel or thinking about it too much -- we always seem to throw away a half," fumed Berlin coach Pal Dardai.

Tired Dortmund

Third-placed Dortmund laboured to a 1-0 win over relegation-threatened Ingolstadt on Friday with a poor second-half performance.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang's 14th-minute goal won the game, but Ingolstadt were denied a clear penalty and only goalkeeper Roman Burki's superb saves protected Dortmund's lead.

Coach Thomas Tuchel said his side were feeling the affects of a busy fixture list after recent midweek Champions League and German Cup games.

But things will get worse after the international break.

Dortmund have nine matches in April, including their two-legged Champions League quarterfinal against Monaco, starting with the derby at Schalke a week on Saturday.



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