Tedesco under pressure as Schalke crash at home to Duesseldorf


Berlin (AFP)

Schalke crashed 4-0 at home to Fortuna Duesseldorf on Saturday, increasing the pressure on head coach Domenico Tedesco.

After director of sport Christian Heidel resigned last weekend, Tedesco is perilously close to being sacked after his side's mauling at the Veltins Arena left them 14th -- seven points from the relegation places.

Schalke face Manchester City away on March 12 in the Champions League last 16 looking to overturn a 3-2 defeat from the first leg, but Tedesco could be gone before then following their 13th defeat in 24 league games.

Heidel, who had backed Tedesco publically since their last league win in January, walked away after last weekend's 3-0 defeat at Mainz.

Schalke were torn apart by mid-table Duesseldorf, whose Polish striker Dawid Kownacki scored his first two goals in only his third Bundesliga match.

A penalty by striker Dodi Lukebakio gave Duesseldorf the lead before Kownacki grabbed his first, then midfielder Benito Raman made it 3-0 with 20 minutes left.

Kownacki netted his second after Raman's shot was stopped by Schalke's Germany Under-21 goalkeeper Alexander Nuebel, but the parry fell into the Pole's path six minutes from time.

Bundesliga leaders Borussia Dortmund stumbled to a 2-1 defeat at Augsburg on Friday and could now finish the weekend level on 54 points with Bayern Munich, who play Borussia Moenchengladbach away later.

Elsewhere, RB Leipzig squeezed past bottom side Nuremberg with a 1-0 away win to move up to third.

Leipzig knocked Gladbach down to fourth after surviving a first-half scare at Nuremberg, whose midfielder Hannes Behrens smashed an early penalty attempt off the crossbar.

Leipzig took the three points when Lukas Klostermann scored from a corner just before half-time.

Eintracht Frankfurt, who face Inter Milan in the last 16 of the Europa League on Thursday, moved up to fifth with a 3-2 win at home to ten-man Hoffenheim thanks to a headed 96th-minute goal by substitute striker Goncalo Paciencia.

The Portugal forward came on with 10 minutes left to break the hearts of Hoffenheim, who had been 2-1 up before playing the last 25 minutes with ten men after Ghana defender Kasim Adams received a second yellow card.

Frenchman Sebastian Haller headed Frankfurt level on 89 minutes before Paciencia's dramatic late winner.

Defender Niklas Stark made amends for an own goal just after the break against Mainz to net Hertha Berlin's winning goal in their 2-1 home victory after Marko Grujic, on loan from Liverpool, had equalised at the Olympic Stadium.

Bayer Leverkusen climbed to sixth, among the Europa League places, after running out 2-0 winners over mid-table Freiburg thanks to goals by Chile's Charles Aranguiz and Jamaica winger Leon Bailey.