BREMEN, September 22 (Bundesliga) - Werder Bremen got their Bundesliga season back on track on Saturday with a convincing win over German champions Stuttgart.
Hugo Almeida gave the hosts the perfect start with two goals in the first five minutes.
Mario Gomez halved the deficit for the visitors in the 13th minute but Boubacar Sanogo restored Bremen's two-goal cushion within 60 seconds.
Diego celebrated his new contract - he is now committed to the club until 2011 - by putting the icing on the cake with the fourth goal two minutes from time.
The result sees the host climb to seventh in the standings, while Stuttgart's title defence continues to stutter with a record of seven points from six matches. They lie 13th.
Both sides headed into the big game looking to bounce back from midweek defeats in their Champions League openers - Bremen at Real Madrid and Stuttgart at Rangers.
And it was Thomas Schaaf's team that found their rhythm first at the Weser Stadion.
Diego found Daniel Jensen, who in turn played a good ball to Almeida and the Portuguese frontman hammered the ball home from eight yards after four minutes.
A minute later Bremen were two up. Diego was again influential, taking on defender Ludovic Magnin and picking out Almeida in a similar position and he produced a similar outcome.
Gomez, a scorer at Ibrox in midweek, slotted home eight minutes later to make it 2-1 from Sami Khedira's cross.
Their hopes of restoring parity were soon dashed, however, when Petri Pasanen played a long ball into the path of Sanogo who beat Fernando Meira for pace and slotted into the net.
Markus Rosenberg replaced Almeida in the 37th minute and had a chance to extend his side's lead on the stroke of half-time only to be denied by a last-ditch tackle from Ricardo Osorio.
The visitors did not give up hope, and went close after the interval when a Gomez shot missed by a matter of inches.
Roberto Hilbert then smashed a 12-yard effort against the crossbar, with the referee ruling it did not cross the line when it bounced down, much to the relief of the home team.
It was Gomez's turn to clip the woodwork on the hour mark, curling a shot around Bremen keeper Tim Wiese but just shaving the left-hand upright.
But Stuttgart could just not find a way back into the game, and Bremen soon sensed the chance to further extend their advantage.
Diego found himself free in the area but pulled his shot wide after 74 minutes.
Then, two minutes from time, the South American did get his name on the scoresheet with a deflected effort off Antonio Da Silva.