Berlin, April 26 (Reuters): Bayern Munich secured an 18th German crown with four Bundesliga games left after a 2-0 victory at VfL Wolfsburg on Saturday.
Second-half goals from strikers Elber and Claudio Pizarro gave Bayern an unassailable lead of 13 points over second-placed VfB Stuttgart, who were held to a 1-1 draw at home to Hansa Rostock.
Defending champions Borussia Dortmund, who needed a win to stay in contention, remained third a further point adrift after a 0-0 draw at TSV 1860 Munich.
Bayern dominated the season and were 15 points clear a few weeks ago but then worried their fans as the lead slipped to 11 by losing their last two games before Saturday’s match.
“Winning the title so early is a reward for a sensational performance from the team,” said coach Ottmar Hitzfeld.
Brazilian Elber latched on to a Ballack, who returned to the side after injury, pass to put them in front from 13 metres in the 59th minute and Peru’s Pizarro wrapped it up from close range after a clever combination involving four Bayern players with seven minutes remaining.