BERLIN — Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Maximilian Philipp and the video referee all struck twice as Borussia Dortmund routed Cologne in the Bundesliga on Sunday.
Nothing went right for the visitors in the 5-0 defeat, with Cologne now conceding 12 league goals in four defeats. Dortmund remains the only team yet to concede.
Philipp got the home side off to a dream start with a glancing header to Andrey Yarmolenko’s fine cross.
It was Philipp’s first goal for Dortmund since his summer transfer from Freiburg. Both he and Ukrainian forward Yarmolenko, another new arrival, were Dortmund’s best players in the first half.
But the home side had to wait until first-half injury time for the next goal, controversially scored by Sokratis Papastathopoulos.
Referee Patrick Ittrich at first ruled the goal out for a Sokratis shove when Cologne defender Dominique Heintz collided with his goalkeeper and the ball fell kindly for Sokratis to poke over the line, but the goal was given after consultation with his video assistant.
Cologne’s anger was exacerbated as Ittrich’s whistle for the alleged foul came before the ball crossed the line.
"We want to protest. It was an irregular goal in contravention of the rules," Cologne general manager Joerg Schmadtke said.
Schmadtke’s counterpart Hans-Joachim Watzke accused the visitors of being "bad losers."
Video assistance intervened for a second time when Lukas Kluenter blocked Philipp’s header with his arm. Play continued but Ittrich called it back and booked the Cologne defender after receiving instructions on his earpiece. Aubameyang duly converted the penalty, the only encouragement he needed for his second goal a minute later.
With the injured Marco Reus watching from the stands, his replacement Philipp claimed his second in the 69th with a brilliant chip over the goalkeeper after Mahmoud Dahoud sent him through.
The 17-year-old Alexander Isak, who came on late for Dortmund, was agonizingly close to scoring on his league debut.
Bayer Leverkusen took out its early season frustration on Freiburg, dealing the visitors a 4-0 defeat.
Leverkusen, which started the league with two losses and a draw, raced into a 3-0 lead in the first half as the side eased the pressure on new coach Heiko Herrlich, who played as a youth for Freiburg.
Kevin Volland opened the scoring after 20 minutes with a brilliant strike inside the left post from just under 20 metres (yards), before Charles Aranguiz – who had set him up – powered in a half-cleared corner to make it 2-0.
Lars Bender crossed for Volland to slide in and claim his second goal 10 minutes before the interval.
The Leverkusen forward thought he’d reached his hat trick with 20 minutes remaining – after another fine strike – but the goal was ruled out after video consultation for a foul in the build-up.
Julian Brandt wrapped up the scoring with four minutes remaining when Aranguiz took a quick free kick.
In Sunday’s early game, Alexander Esswein earned Hertha Berlin a 1-1 draw at Hoffenheim in a duel between Europa League contenders.