BERLIN — Raul Gonzalez scored twice in a sparking display as Schalke defeated Hannover 3-0 on Sunday to consolidate its hold on third place in the Bundesliga.
Raul headed Jefferson Farfan's cross in off the left post in the sixth minute, and the 34-year-old forward scored a delectable second in the 47th.
The former Real Madrid star accepted Farfan's return pass before beating goalkeeper Ron-Robert Zieler by playing the ball with his left foot and stroking it inside the post with his right.
Farfan then unselfishly crossed to give Klaas-Jan Huntelaar an easy finish for his 24th goal of the season in the 63rd.
Farfan, who hit the post in the first half after setting up a chance for Julian Draxler, was a constant menace down the right for the home side.
Fans had been chanting Raul's name after another show of skill to elude two Hannover defenders, and the Spaniard, who is yet to respond to Schalke's offer of a one-year contract extension, came off to a standing ovation in the 71st.
"He's a family man, so I can imagine if he gets on offer of two years somewhere else, he may take it," said Schalke coach Huub Stevens. "On the other hand, I hope he stays here another year."
Schalke is six points behind Bayern Munich and five ahead of Borussia Moenchengladbach with five games to play. Hannover dropped three places to eighth.
Hamburger SV was scheduled to host Bayer Leverkusen later.