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    Gladbach brush aside Wolfsburg to boost Champions League hopes

    Berlin (AFP) – Borussia Moenchengladbach stayed in the hunt for a Champions League berth with an emphatic 3-0 Bundesliga home win over Wolfsburg on Tuesday as midfielder Jonas Hofmann scored twice.

    After consecutive defeats by Freiburg and Bayern Munich, who can win an eighth straight league title later on Tuesday with victory at Werder Bremen, Gladbach raced into a two-goal lead after half an hour at Borussia Park.

    Hofmann scored twice before Germany international Lars Stindl swept a third into the net following a second-half counter-attack.

    “We scored three goals, didn’t concede and picked up three points with an ambitious performance in difficult conditions, so I am happy with that,” said Gladbach head coach Marco Rose.

    “The performance of Jonas Hofmann, just like the rest of the team, was very strong, but now we have to turn our attention on Paderborn this Saturday.”

    The result was all the more impressive as Gladbach eased to victory without injured French forwards Marcus Thuram and Alassane Plea.

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    Gladbach moved back into the fourth and final Champions League spot, two points ahead of Bayer Leverkusen, who host Cologne on Wednesday in their game in hand.

    Bayern and Borussia Dortmund have already qualified for next season’s group stage, while RB Leipzig sit third, five points clear of Leverkusen.

    Gladbach took the lead on 11 minutes when Swiss forward Breel Embolo sidestepped a defender and played the ball into Hofmann, who fired past Wolfsburg goalkeeper Koen Casteels.

    The hosts doubled their lead when a long ball into the box was headed down by 2014 World Cup winner Matthias Ginter into the path of Hofmann, who made no mistake from close range.

    Gladbach put the result to bed when a wayward pass from Wolfsburg defender John Brooks was snapped up by winger Ibrahima Traore, whose pass picked out Stindl to fire home 25 minutes from the final whistle.

    The defeat leaves Wolfsburg sixth, which carries a Europa League place next season.

    Gladbach face bottom side Paderborn on Saturday, then mid-table Hertha Berlin on the final day of the season, while Leverkusen face Hertha and Mainz in their last two games.

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