Wolfsburg beat Bremen 5-3 as Maradona honoured in Bundesliga

93

WOLFSBURG, GERMANY: Wolfsburg and Werder Bremen played an eight-goal thriller as Wolfsburg won their Bundesliga game 5-3 after paying tribute to Diego Maradona on Friday.

The teams held a moment’s silence for the Argentina great, who died on Wednesday, before producing uncharacteristic efficiency in a show of attacking soccer.

Bremen’s Japanese forward Yuya Osako, Wolfsburg’s Croatian defender Marin Pongracic and Wolfsburg’s Austrian midfielder Xaver Schlager , from left,vie for the ball during the German Bundesliga soccer match between Werder Bremen and VfL Wolfsburg. AP

Wout Weghorst scored twice to help unbeaten Wolfsburg climb to fifth place at the start of the ninth round.

Both sides had the fewest goals in the Bundesliga, just 14 in eight games involving Wolfsburg, while Bremen had the second fewest at 20. Bremen drew its previous five games 1-1, and would have set a Bundesliga record for the most consecutive games with that score if it had managed another.

Leonardo Bittencourt got the visitors off the mark in the 13th minute, but recently capped Germany defender Ridle Baku and American defender John Brooks struck back for Wolfsburg in the 22nd and 25th.

Kevin Möhwald equalized in the 35th, less than two minutes before Weghorst got his first goal.

The unfortunate Brooks’ own goal drew Bremen level two minutes after the break when he tried to cut out Milot Rashica’s cross.

But Weghorst’s second goal in the 76th put Wolfsburg on course for its fourth win of the season, and Möhwald’s sending off with his second yellow card made Bremen’s task harder.

Wolfsburg goalkeeper Koen Casteels denied Ludwig Augustinsson a late equalizer, and Bartosz Bialek made sure of the points in the fifth minute of injury time.

Bremen dropped to 10th after its first defeat since the opening round.