Borussia Dortmund have dispatched Stuttgart in a lopsided 6-1 victory. A hat trick from striker Robert Lewandowski helped the club equal their best ever Bundesliga start.
Stuttgart came into Friday's match with an important statistic on their side: In their last four matches in Dortmund they were undefeated. Unfortunately for them, Jürgen Klopp's men were determined to change that record, and change it they did.
Karim Haggui scored the opening goal for the visitors in the 13th minute. Alexandru Maxim's free kick led to a corner, and the talented Romanian found Haggui unmarked in the box. The defender bounced his header past Roman Weidenfeller and into the net to make it 1-0.
Just over five minutes later, it was another defender who got on the board - this time Dortmund's Sokratis to make things level. He leapt highest to meet Nuri Sahin's corner and head into the net.
True to the high-intensity tempo of the first half, Dortmund added another three minutes later. Marco Reus powered his way past four Stuttgart defenders before sending a low finish across goal, past Sven Ulreich and into the net.
Lewandowski steals show
It was the second half where Dortmund left their mark. On 54 minutes Robert Lewandowski grabbed his first goal of the evening, and his first goal in September. Receiving the ball in the box, Reus' heel-pass found the Polish forward, who twisted and shot into the top corner.
Just one minute and eight seconds later, Lewandowski scored another when Gotoku Sakai failed to stop Henrikh Mkhitaryan's through-ball and was punished. Ulreich never had a chance with Lewandowski's low finish.
The man of the evening completed his hat trick in the 72nd minute. His pass to the right side of the area led to a Jakub Blaszczykowski shot on goal. Ulreich saved, but Lewandowski was there to follow the rebound and make it 5-1.
Lewandowski notched an assist as well nine minutes later when Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang finished his cross for Dortmund's hardly needed sixth goal of the evening.
Reason to celebrate
"It was a very, very nice game. Lots of goals," Lewandowski told the broadcaster Sky after the match. "I feel really good right now. Obviously I want to play more games like tonight."
"It couldn't have gone better than this," said Weidenfeller, who celebrated his 300th Bundesliga appearance for Dortmund Friday evening.
It was an all-around performance from the hosts, who cemented their position atop the league table and showed fans why equaling their best Bundesliga start in club history is no fluke. Stuttgart will hope to put such a disappointing performance behind them quickly. They head home with just one slight positive: The defeat, albeit heavy, was only their first under new coach Thomas Schneider.