Wolfsburg have risen to third in the Bundesliga with a 3-0 win over Freiburg, extending their unbeaten run to five games amid a close battle in Germany for the Champions League places.
Wolfsburg climbed above Bayer Leverkusen, Borussia Dortmund and Eintracht Frankfurt to move firmly into contention for Champions League qualification.
They are 10 points behind leaders Bayern Munich but only three adrift of Leipzig in second.
United States defender John Brooks lashed the ball in for their opening goal in the 21st minute after Freiburg failed to clear a corner.
Wout Weghorst made it 2-0 with his 13th goal in 19 Bundesliga games just before halftime, beating defender Keven Schlotterbeck and straining to prod the ball past goalkeeper Florian Muller.
Freiburg midfielder Baptiste Santamaria had a hat-trick of missed chances either side of halftime, sending one header over the bar, another header onto the bar, and hitting a long drive which skimmed the outside of the post.
Soon after, Weghorst shot against the base of the post from close range but their third came eventually when midfielder Yannick Gerhardt knocked in a cross for his first league goal of the season.
Earlier, two goals from Marius Wolf had lifted Cologne to a 3-1 win over Arminia Bielefeld in a game between two teams trying to avoid relegation.
Cologne moved up two places to 14th with their second win of 2021, dropping Bielefeld into 16th and the relegation playoff spot.
Wolf gave Cologne the lead with a goal on the rebound in the 10th minute after Ellyes Shkiri’s header was palmed away by the goalkeeper at a corner.
He added the second 18 minutes later with a powerful low volley off a misplaced headed clearance.
Elvis Rexhbecaj extended Cologne’s lead in the 63rd, finishing off an incisive team move, before Sergio Cordova reduced the deficit for Bielefeld.