Franck Ribery fired home an 88th-minute winner to give Bayern Munich a 2-1 win at Freiburg and lift spirits following their Champions League exit.
Much of the focus this week has been on how long coach Louis van Gaal will stay at Bayern in the wake of the defeat to Inter, and a draw at Freiburg would only have increased the pressure.
Bayern had started well, going in front through Mario Gomez' header after nine minutes, but Freiburg responded quickly - Papiss Cisse missing a penalty in the 14th minute before making amends in the 17th - and the visitors had looked set to settle for a point before Ribery's late left-footed drive.
A controversial late goal from Petar Sliskovic denied Borussia Dortmund all three points as the league leaders slipped up for the second week running in a 1-1 draw against Mainz.
An early goal from Mats Hummels gave Dortmund the lead and Nuri Sahin had the chance to double their lead from the penalty spot, but his effort was saved.
Mladen Petric scored a hat-trick as Hamburg thrashed Cologne 6-2 and ended a three-game winless streak.
Petric scored in the 12th minute to open the floodgates before Anis Ben-Hatira made it 2-0 after 32 minutes. Petric struck again in the 38th and 43rd minutes for a 4-0 half-time lead. Mato Jajalo cut the deficit to 4-1 in the 50th minute before Gojko Kacar pushed the lead to 5-1 two minutes later.
Ze Roberto scored a final time for Hamburg from the spot in the 58th minute and Lukas Podolski finished the scoring in the 62nd minute.
Sandro Wagner scored two penalties as Werder Bremen claimed a 3-1 win that ended ten-man Nurnberg's eight-game unbeaten run and took a big step towards avoiding relegation.
Wagner gave Bremen the lead in the 27th minute before Ilkay Gundogan equalised on the half-hour mark. Claudio Pizarro made it 2-1 for Bremen five minutes into the second half and, after Nurnberg's Timothy Chandler received a second yellow card with 18 minutes to go, Wagner's second spot-kick of the afternoon sealed the win.
Theofanis Gekas scored twice as Eintracht Frankfurt beat St Pauli 2-1 to end a long winless streak. Gekas converted a penalty in the 34th minute to give Frankfurt the lead before Charles Takyi levelled the score in the 42nd minute, but Gekas struck again in the 77th minute for the winner.
Hannover kept their bid for Champions League qualification on track with a 2-0 victory at home to Hoffenheim. Didier Ya Konan gave the hosts the lead in the 38th minute and Mohammed Abdellaoue doubled the advantage in the 53rd minute.