So close: Wolfsburg creep toward title

Edin Dzeko scored a hat trick and Grafite added a brace as Wolfsburg took a giant step towards their first Bundesliga title with an emphatic victory at Hannover.

Dzeko netted in the 14th, 54th and 80th minutes to move to 25 goals this season while Grafite found the target in the 33rd and 36th minutes to take his mark to 26 goals.

Wolfsburg remain atop the table with 66 points, but now hold a two-point advantage over Bayern Munich and Stuttgart ahead of next weekend's finale.

Hannover came into the Lower Saxony derby already safe from relegation and with a 12-game unbeaten run at home.

They had the first chance just two minutes in although Arnold Jan Bruggink could only find the side netting with his effort.

Wolfsburg responded by taking the lead in the 14th minute with a superb goal from Dzeko, who chested down Makoto Hasebe's cross and volleyed into the top right corner from just outside the area.

Hannover goalkeeper Robert Enke palmed away Marcel Schafer's dangerous free-kick in the 22nd minute, while Wolfsburg keeper Diego Benaglio also had to fend away Bruggink's 18-yard bullet four minutes later.

Christian Gentner then struck the right post on the half-hour mark for Wolfsburg, but Grafite doubled the advantage three minutes later, collecting Dzeko's pass from the left side and holding off pressure from Mario Eggimann before beating Enke.

Grafite made it 3-0 three minutes later, again making the most of some poor defending to fire home from the left side of the area.

Wolfsburg added their fourth nine minutes after the break when Zvjezdan Misimovic curled a cross into the box and Dzeko headed home from six yards.

Hannover almost pulled one back when Jiri Stajner hit the crossbar in the 66th minute.

But Dzeko completed his hat-trick with 10 minutes left, heading home Yoshito Okubo's cross to round off a successful afternoon for the visitors.

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