Bundesliga: Bayern hammer 10-man Hanover

August 18, 2007

BERLIN, Aug 25 (Reuters) - Bayern Munich beat Hanover 96 3-0 at the Allianz Arena on Saturday to make it three wins from their first three games and move two points clear at the top of the Bundesliga.

Bayern, once again irresistible in attack, took the lead in the 28th minute when Luca Toni struck with his third goal of the season.

Hanover 96 had Altin Lala sent off before the end of the first half and Bayern helped themselves to another satisfying victory with goals from Mark van Bommel and Hamit Altintop.

With three games played, Bayern are the only side still with a perfect record. Arminia Bielefeld, 2-0 winners at home to Hertha Berlin, and VfL Bochum, who beat Hamburg SV 2-1 on Friday, each have seven points.

Champions VfB Stuttgart got their first win of the season, with a goal from Mario Gomez enough for them to beat Duisburg 1-0. Werder Bremen also tasted victory for the first time as a goal from Martin Harnik gave them a 1-0 win away to Nuremberg.

Schalke 04, last season's runners-up, will join Bielefeld and Bochum on the seven-point mark if they win away to VfL Wolfsburg on Sunday.

STRIKING PROBLEMS

Toni was forced out of the game immediately after opening the scoring and that was probably the only reason Bayern did not hand Hanover a humiliating defeat.

The Italian did superbly well when he took a chip over the top from Bastian Schweinsteiger, controlled with one touch and beat the keeper with a fierce shot.

He appeared to injure his right thigh in scoring the goal and with Lukas Podolski, Miroslav Klose and Jan Schlaudraff also on the injured list coach Ottmar Hitzfeld had no option but to bring on the inexperienced Sandro Wagner.

With Franck Ribery running the game with real style, Bayern created chance after chance before Van Bommel's fine strike from just inside the area on the right made the game safe in the 69th minute.

Altintop added an eye-catching third with four minutes to go when he jinked his way through the defence before sweeping in a shot from the edge of the area.

After three games Bayern have a record of 10 goals scored and none conceded and Hitzfeld was obviously satisfied.

"We could have scored more goals but with a 3-0 scoreline you can hardly complain," the coach told reporters. "We kept our concentration and Hanover didn't create a single chance. That says something about the way we played."