Hannover continue Bayern's woes
The defending German champions, Bayern Munich, were beaten 3-1 by Hannover today for their third defeat in a week.
Mohammed Abddellaoue put the Reds in front in the 16th minute and Konstantin Rausch added a second early in the second half. Arjen Robben pulled one back for Bayern almost immediately, but Sergio Pinto's goal in the 62nd minute ended their hopes of recovering.
Bayern defender Breno was sent off in the 73rd minute, whose side have now fallen four points adrift of third place and the minimum aim of a place in the UEFA Champions League next season. Hannover started the game two points above Bayern, and they appeared to have no intention of relinquishing that advantage.
They went ahead in the 16th minute when Abdellaoue met Rausch's low cross at the near post and sent it in on the stretch. Emanuel Pogatetz nearly made it two in the 29th minute, but he sent his header from a corner straight at Thomas Kraft in the Bayern goal..
Hannover continued to create the better chances, with Rausch volleying wide in the 37th minute. The home team deservedly doubled their lead in the 51st minute when the lively Rausch's shot took a slight deflection off Mario Gomez to beat Kraft.
Bayern had to respond and they did with Robben reducing the arrears just four minutes later, stealing in at the far post to head Franck Ribery's cross over the line. However, Bayern's recovery ended there as Hannover regained control of the game with Pinto putting them 3-1 up in the 62nd minute.
Pinto stole the ball off Robben before racing towards the Bayern goal and shooting from 25-yards past Kraft, who made a poor attempt to save the ball, in keeping with Bayern's day. The Bavarians self-destructed ten minutes later when Breno saw a straight red card for a retaliatory foul on Lars Stindl.
Moritz Stoppelkamp missed two great chances to make it four late on as the long faces of Bayern's president Uli Hoeness and chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge in the stands expressed their dissatisfaction. They now have a big decision to make and Van Gaal's future is not looking very rosy as Hannover were left celebrating a win which puts them closer to a place in the Champions League next season.