Schalke tops Stuttgart to go level with Bayern

Schalke took advantage of Bayern 1, at Arena to move into a tie for first place in the Bundesliga.

Joel Matip put the home side in front with the only goal of the first half as the Cameroonian midfielder netted in the third minute of the match.

Schalke then took control in the second period, as Kyriakos Papadopoulos scored in the 58th minute before Julian Draxler wrapped up the affair in the 80th minute. Shinji Okazaki scored the lone goal for Stuttgart, pulling one back in the 87th minute.

The win, Schalke's fourth-straight in Bundesliga play, brings the Royal Blues to 37 points on the year, good enough to share first place with Bayern Munich after its 3-1 loss to Borussia Monchengladbach on Friday.

Schalke also hands Stuttgart its third-successive defeat as the Reds sit midtable with 22 points. They have not won in league play since Nov. 20, a stretch of five games where they have claimed just one point.

Wolfsburg 1, Cologne 0

Wolfsburg, Germany - Wolfsburg won its second-straight Bundesliga match on Saturday, edging Cologne, 1-0, thanks to a goal from Sebastian Polter in the 78th minute.

Polter's goal sees Wolfsburg improve to 23 points on the year and climb into the top half of the table, one point clear of Stuttgart.

Cologne has lost two in a row in German league play and slips into the bottom half of the table with 21 points.

Nurnberg 2, Hertha Berlin 0

Nurnberg, Germany - Alexander Esswein and Dominic Maroh scored on opposite sides of halftime as Nurnberg defeated Hertha Berlin, 2-0, at the Frankenstadion on Saturday.

Esswein gave the home side the lead in the 43rd minute and Maroh wrapped up the affair with the second goal of the game in the 85th minute.

Nurnberg has now won two-straight to climb four points clear of the relegation zone, while Hertha Berlin remains winless in its last seven league games.

Freiburg 1, Augsburg 0

Freiburg, Germany - Freiburg traded places with Augsburg in the table as the Dreisamstadion club earned a 1-0 home win to climb out of the cellar at the expense of Jos Luhukay's men.

Matthias Ginter scored the winner on his debut, notching the lone goal in the 88th minute to claim a dramatic win for Freiburg.

Augsburg moves into last place on 15 points, one point shy of second-from- bottom Freiburg.

Hoffenheim 0, Hannover 0

Sinsheim, Germany - Hannover was held to its fifth-straight draw on Saturday, playing to a 0-0 tie with Hoffenheim at the Rhein-Neckar Arena.

The draw keeps the two sides separated by a single point in the top half of the table, as Hannover sits seventh on 24 points, followed closely by Hoffenheim in eighth place.

Kaiserslautern 0, Werder Bremen 0

Kaiserslautern, Germany - Kaiserslautern drew its fourth-straight match on Saturday in a 0-0 tie with Werder Bremen at the Fritz-Walter-Stadion.

Bremen remains in fifth place on 30 points while Kaiserslautern stays in the relegation zone with 17 points.