Borussia Dortmund extended their lead at the top of the Bundesliga to 13 points with a 2-0 home win over St Pauli on Saturday.
Juergen Klopp’s side have dominated the league this season but entered the match with just one win in four and the likes of Bayer Leverkusen, Hannover and Bayern Munich all closing in on them.
But a confident display in front of more than 80,000 fans at Signal Iduna Park re-assured Dortmund fans they should lift their first Bundesliga crown since 2001/02.
Lucas Barrios opened the scoring after 39 minutes, with the Paraguay international netting his 10th strike of the season.
A Ralph Gunesch own goal just after half-time doubled Dortmund’s lead and they held on without any real problems to secure their first home win since December 11.
In other matches, Hannover recorded an impressive 3-0 win over Kaiserslautern at the AWD-Arena.
Didier Ya Konan was inspirational early, providing assists for Jan Schlaudraff and Mohammed Abdellaoue in the first half, before Schlaudraff notched his third 12 minutes into the second half to wrap up the result.
Freiburg moved into sixth with a 2-1 come-from-behind home win against Wolfsburg.
After Patrick Helmes, a January signing from Leverkusen, gave Wolfsburg a 28th minute lead, Stefan Reisinger gave his side the perfect boost on the stroke of half-time with an equaliser.
Papiss Demba Cisse then completed the comeback with his 16th goal of the season with 17 minutes remaining.
Hamburg trounced Werder Bremen 4-0, thanks to a Paolo Guerrero double, while Youssef Mohamad’s 69th minute equaliser gave Cologne a 1-1 draw at Hoffenheim.
in the later game, Bayern Munich climbed to second spot on the Bundesliga table with a 3-1 away win over Mainz 05 at the Stadion am Bruchweg.
Bayern and Mainz were fourth and fifth respectively on the league table heading into the clash, but the visiting side stamped their authority on the contest with a ninth-minute opener from Bastian Schweinsteiger.
Thomas Mueller doubled the visitors’ lead five minutes after the break, before Mario Gomez added a third in the 77th minute to move Louis van Gaal’s men to second and 13 points from league-leaders Borussia Dortmund.
Tunisian striker Sami Allagui pulled a consolation goal back for Mainz in the 84th minute to mark the sheet of veteran Bayern goalkeeper Hans-Jorg Butt, who only entered the game as a half-time replacement for Thomas Kraft.