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Bundesliga: Dortmund win big to keep Bayern at arm’s length

Borussia Dortmund v Hannover 96 - Bundesliga

DORTMUND, GERMANY - JANUARY 26: Achraf Hakimi of Dortmund celebrates his goal for the 1-0 lead with Marco Reus during the Bundesliga match between Borussia Dortmund and Hannover 96 at the Signal Iduna Park on January 26, 2019 in Dortmund, Germany. (Photo by Jörg Schüler/Getty Images)

Bongarts/Getty Images

BERLIN (AP) Coach Andre Breitenreiter was facing the chop after his Hannover side was thrashed by Bundesliga leader Borussia Dortmund 5-1 on Saturday.

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Hannover is second from bottom, level on points with last-placed Nuremberg, and Breitenreiter received little support from club president Martin Kind or general manager Horst Heldt before the game.

Kind said the club needed to consider all options and “anything else would be dishonest.”

Dortmund stretched its lead over defending champion Bayern Munich to nine points.

Dortmund captain Marco Reus, back after an ankle injury, scored one, set up another, and missed what seemed a certain goal as his team turned up the pressure on Bayern, which hosts Stuttgart on Sunday.

Dortmund defender Achraf Hakimi opened the scoring in the 24th minute after playing a one-two with Raphael Guerreiro, and the home side killed the game with three goals in quick succession from the hour-mark.

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“It was a very difficult first half for us,” Dortmund coach Lucien Favre said. “It was difficult to create chances. We said in the break that we needed to score a second goal quickly. It was easier then.”

First, Hakimi capitalized on a Hannover mistake to set up Reus, then Jadon Sancho gave Mario Goetze a simple finish. Four minutes later, Reus repaid Guerreiro for his earlier assist.

Reus tried lifting the ball over goalkeeper Michael Esser minutes later, but Hannover captain Waldemar Anton got back to clear.

Marvin Bakalorz pulled one back late for the visitors, but Axel Witsel fired in off the post in injury time.

Borussia Moenchengladbach defeated Augsburg 2-0 to move ahead of third-placed Bayern on goal difference. It was Moenchengladbach’s 12th win in a row at home, matching a club record going back almost 35 years.