Leverkusen up to fifth in Bundesliga, Bremen still in danger

Duesseldorf's Matthias Zimmermann, right, fouls Leverkusen's Nadiem Amiri in the penalty zone during the German Bundesliga soccer match between Bayer Leverkusen and Fortuna Duesseldorf in Leverkusen, Germany, Sunday, Jan. 26, 2020. (Martin Meissner/AP)

BERLIN — Bayer Leverkusen moved up to fifth place in the Bundesliga with a 3-0 win over bottom side Fortuna Dusseldorf, while Werder Bremen was unable to escape the relegation zone on Sunday.

Kai Havertz got Leverkusen off the mark in the 40th minute, Lars Bender decided the outcome in the 79th and Lucas Alario made sure with a penalty in the 89th.

Leverkusen’s third straight league win lifted the side one point above Schalke – which was demolished 5-0 by Bayern Munich on Saturday – and six points behind league leader Leipzig.

Dusseldorf is last following its second consecutive loss and after previously bottom Paderborn’s win the day before.

Bremen’s bid to leave the drop zone ended in a 3-0 defeat at home to Hoffenheim earlier Sunday.

Bremen was the better side for much of the game until Andrej Kramaric forced an own-goal from Davy Klaassen in the 65th.

Bremen coach Florian Kohfeldt reacted with two changes but his side was caught on a counterattack finished off by Christoph Baumgartner in the 79th, four minutes before Kramaric set up Sargis Adamyan for the deciding goal.

Bremen remained in the relegation playoff spot, while Hoffenheim moved seventh, three points behind Schalke.

Leipzig lost at Eintracht Frankfurt on Saturday, with Bayern and Borussia Monchengladbach taking advantage with wins to cut the gap to one and two points, respectively. Borussia Dortmund is four points off the pace.

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