Dortmund regain the lead in style

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The Independent Online
European round-up


Borussia Dortmund served notice this weekend that they are in no mood to surrender their German Bundesliga title. Having briefly lost the leadership of the league on Saturday afternoon, when Bayern Munich took over at the top, Dortmund regained their one-point advantage in style in the evening.

Bayern's 2-0 home win over Kaiserslautern, with goals in each half from Andreas Herzog and Christian Ziege, was inspired by a vintage performance from Lothar Matthaus. Another veteran international, Karlheinz Riedle, set Borussia on the way to an emphatic 5-0 win at VfB Stuttgart. Riedle's opening goal was followed by two from the Swiss striker Stephane Chapuisat, back after a long injury lay-off, and single strikes from Michael Zorc and Lars Ricken.

Not for the first time this year, Ajax failed to impress on the home front, where their recent form has been patchy. The European champions, who will defend a two-goal lead when they entertain Dortmund in their European Cup quarter-final second leg on Wednesday, drew 0-0 at Volendam yesterday but still lead the Dutch League by two points. PSV Eindhoven, their nearest challengers, were held at home, also 0-0, by Utrecht on Saturday.

In Spain, Real Madrid gained a comfortable 2-0 home win over Albacete on Saturday but the victory was overshadowed by injuries to their veteran goalkeeper, Paco Buyo, and their Argentine playmaker, Fernando Redondo, who will both miss Wednesday's second leg of their European Cup quarter- final against Juventus. Real will be defending a one-goal lead in Turin, where Santiago Canizares will keep goal.