The Bundesliga returned to action on Saturday for the first time since March after the COVID-19 pandemic brought all sporting events to a grinding halt.
While there were no fans, social distancing on the benches and no team celebrations, football was back and the action on the pitch was worth watching.
Borussia Dortmund were the first team to score after the break across six matches that kicked off at the same time.
Erling Haaland was on target for the Black and Yellow as he notched his 10th goal of the season in just nine appearances while he turned goalscorer to assister as after assisting Raphael Guerreiro for his brace with Thorgan Hazard having chipped in earlier as well.
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A 4-0 victory over Schalke was the perfect return as Dortmund look to push Bayern Munich for the title. They now sit one point behind Bayern who will play today and any points dropped could prove to be a turning point in the title race.
RB Leipzig, on the other hand, missed their chance to remain hot on Bayern’s heals after they were held to a 1-1 draw against SC Freiburg with Yussuf Poulsen’s 77th-minute equalizer ruling out Manuel Guide’s opener.
Hertha put in a polished performance as they beat Hoffenheim 3-0 away while Wolfsburg edged Augsburg 2-1. Meanwhile, in a bottom of the table clash, Dusseldorf missed the opportunity to distance themselves from relegation after being held by last-placed Paderborn who still remains five points away from safety.
Borussia Monchengladbach then stamped their authority on proceedings in the late kick off against Eintracht Frankfurt after going a goal up in the first minute courtesy of Alassane Plea.
Marcus Thuram then scored six minutes later before a 73rd-minute penalty from Ramy Bensebaini capped off the performance as they leapfrogged Leipzig into third place with an outside shot at a late title challenge, two points behind Dortmund.
Sunday will see two more matches as FC Koln host Mainz before Bayern Munich return to the field against Union Berlin in a must-win clash. Werder Bremen and Bayer Leverkusen will bring a close to the round of fixtures on Monday night.
It is not football as we all know it, but it is football nonetheless and so far, there are positive signs that the Bundesliga can present a possible blueprint for the return of more leagues across Europe.