The Wolves ran out comfortable and fully deserved winners thanks to a brace from Wout Weghorst plus further strikes from Kevin Mbabu and Joao Victor. The result means that VfL stay in sixth, on goal difference ahead of Hoffenheim, going into the final day of the season. The Wolves host newly crowned champions Bayern Munich while TSG are away to Borussia Dortmund to determine who qualifies directly for the Europa League and who goes into qualifying for the competition.
Midweek changes reversed
Oliver Glasner made three changes from Tuesday’s 3-0 defeat at Borussia Mönchengladbach, reverting to the same line-up that started in the previous fixture against Freiburg. That meant Jerome Roussillon, Josip Brekalo and Daniel Ginczek came back in for Yannick Gerhardt, Victor and Felix Klaus.
Wolves in control
The Green-and-Whites started on the front foot at a sunny VELTINS-Arena and created the first opening in the seventh minute, when Ginczek fired over the bar after a neat one-two. The pressure built as Brekalo’s shot from the edge of the area was deflected just off target, and moments later the visitors took a deserved lead. Ginczek’s effort from Renato Steffen’s probing cross was blocked, but Weghorst pounced on the loose ball and fired in on the turn with a poacher’s finish.
Glasner’s men continued to control proceedings without creating any real opportunities to extend their lead, with Schalke not threatening until the final minute of the first half, when Koen Casteels got down well to save Weston McKennie’s low drive from a corner.
Four goals in 12 minutes
The hosts came out with more attacking purpose after the break and forced Casteels into an excellent reflex save from ex-Wolf Daniel Caligiuri in the 55th minute. It proved to be a hugely important save, too, as VfL then went up the other end and doubled their advantage. Steffen again fed Weghorst, who slid the ball past Alexander Nübel.
Things got even better for the visitors just a couple of minutes later. Maximilian Arnold played a smart free-kick into the path of Ginczek, whose shot rebounded off the inside of the post and into the path of Mbabu for a simple finish. Brimming with confidence, the Wolves made it 4-0 in the 70th minute, Nübel punching a corner only as far as substitute Victor, who placed a shot past the Schalke keeper for his second Bundesliga goal.
The Royal Blues responded immediately by reducing the arrears through Rabbi Matondo, but that proved to be nothing more than a consolation as the Wolves eased to an impressive victory.
FC Schalke 04: Nübel - Kenny (Becker 46’), Kabak, Oczipka, Miranda (Thiaw 69’) - McKennie, Schöpf, Caligiuri, Mercan (Raman 46’) - Matondo, Gregoritsch (Kutucu 65’)
VfL Wolfsburg: Casteels - Mbabu, Pongracic, Brooks, Roussillon - Steffen (Victor 67’), Schlager (Gerhardt 75’), Arnold, Brekalo - Weghorst , Ginczek (Marmoush 83’)
Goals: Weghorst 0-1 (16’), Weghorst 0-2 (56’), Mbabu 0-3 (58’), Victor 0-4 (70’), Matondo 1-4 (71’)
Yellow cards: Oczipka, Gregoritsch, Kenny, McKennie / Steffen, Mbabu, Roussillon
Referee: Sascha Stegemann (Niederkassel)