Bayern Munich ended the year 2016 on a high as they now have a three-point lead at the top of the Bundesliga after thrashing title rivals RB Leipzig 3-0 in their last game before the winter break.
Bayern were totally in charge of the top-of-the-table clash at the Allianz Arena to put their nearest rivals in their place.READ ALSO: Chelsea's six-point lead | Points too many
Thiago Alcantara, Xabi Alonso and Robert Lewandowski supplied the goals, all within the first 45 minutes, as Carlo Ancelotti's first six months in charge ended with the champions in their habitual position.
Leipzig had Emil Forsberg sent off as they were beaten for only the second time since earning promotion to Germany's top flight.
Their advantage over third place was cut to six points by Hertha Berlin, who celebrated a 2-0 win over bottom-placed Darmstadt.
Marvin Plattenhardt and Salomon Kalou scored in the capital as the Old Lady climbed three places - above Eintracht Frankfurt, Hoffenheim and Borussia Dortmund.
Hoffenheim may have dropped one position, but they remain one of only two clubs in Europe's top five leagues, together with Real Madrid, to get through to the winter break without losing a single game.
They were denied victory over Werder Bremen by a late Serge Gnabry equaliser, which cancelled out Sandro Wagner's opener at the Rhein-Neckar Arena.
Elsewhere on Wednesday, Cologne and Bayer Leverkusen shared the spoils in a 1-1 draw with Anthony Modeste and Wendell scoring the goals, while Freiburg moved up to eighth with a 2-1 win at struggling Ingolstadt.
Florian Niederlechner was on target twice for Christian Streich's men, with Markus Suttner's goal only a consolation for the Bavarians, who conclude 2017 inside the bottom three.