Robert Lewandowski scored his 100th goal for Bayern Munich as the reigning Bundesliga champions clear 10 points at the top with a 3-0 home victory over Eintracht Frankfurt.
With second-placed RB Leipzig losing to Wolfsburg on Saturday, the Bavarians’ easy win at the Allianz Arena, which saw Lewandowski reach an important career milestone with a goal in each half, lifts them into a dominant position to retain the title as the season enters its final straight.
Douglas Costa was on target too, in a game which also saw long-term injury absentee Jerome Boateng return to action as a second-half substitute.
Niko Kovac’s Eagles, meanwhile, remain in contention for a Europa League place, but this was their fifth straight defeat and third by this scoreline in their last five away games.
Promoted Leipzig, who in their first top-flight campaign had previously been the surprise leaders, went down 1-0 to lowly Wolfsburg at the Red Bull Arena.
Mario Gomez’s ninth-minute goal – his eighth this term – separated the teams and lifted the Wolves three points clear of the relegation places.
With Bayern’s nearest challengers slipping up, Borussia Dortmund had an excellent opportunity to try and get closer to the top two, but they instead suffered a 2-1 defeat at Hertha Berlin.
Salomon Kalou’s opener in the 11th minute set the tone for a difficult afternoon for Thomas Tuchel’s men and it was not until the 55th minute that Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang managed to equalize.
With 19 minutes remaining, defender Marvin Plattenhardt plundered a winner that took Hertha above Frankfurt and into fifth, where they are four points behind Hoffenheim.
Julian Nagelsmann’s side could have been further clear of the capital club, but they had to settle for a share of the spoils from a 1-1 draw at Freiburg.
Maximilian Philipp put the seventh-placed club ahead before the hour mark, on which former Leicester man Andrej Kramaric levelled to preserve Hoffenheim’s four-match unbeaten run.
Elsewhere, bottom side Darmstadt picked up just a second win in 16 attempts as Mainz fell to a 2-1 loss at the Jonathan-Heimes-Stadion.
Aytac Sulu and Sidney Sam – from the penalty spot – boosted the basement boys into a shock two-goal lead before Robin Quaison halved the deficit in first-half stoppage time.
Both teams lost a man to red cards following the break, with Mario Vrancic and Stefan Bell walking for the hosts and the visitors respectively.
In the late game, two goals from Anthony Modeste were not enough to deny Ingolstadt a valuable point in their battle to beat the drop as Cologne were held to a 2-2 draw.
Modeste, the former Blackburn striker, boosted mid-table Cologne ahead with a 15th-minute penalty.
But Dario Lezcano sent 17th-placed Ingolstadt inside on level terms when he stuck away Sonny Kittel’s assist.
Cologne restored their lead through Modeste on the hour mark, only for Romain Bregerie to score nine minutes later, thus clinching Ingolstadt’s first draw since November.
Hamburg, in the relegation play-off spot, are now four points away.