Now that Marco Reus is no longer routinely compared to or confused with Marko Marin, the similarly mercurial, slight, very badly coiffed dinker he replaced at Borussia Mönchengladbach, the 22-year-old attacking midfielder has only one problem: he's been a little too good for his own good in 2011.

Media hyperbole? Maybe. But consider this. Reus, or "Rolls Reus" as Bild has started calling him, was being genuinely targeted in the spring by Borussia Dortmund, Bayern Munich, Arsenal and Manchester United, when "the Foals" looked like galloping straight into the second division. A defeat by Bochum in the relegation play-offs would have made his departure a foregone conclusion. Hard offers were ready to be made, some personal terms had been discussed. Reus, however, saved Gladbach with his equaliser in the 1-1 draw in the return leg and effectively blocked his own move. Borussia suddenly valued him at €21m (£18.3m), a little too much for a player whose incredible talent was sadly matched by his fragility. Four times Jogi Löw invited him to play in the national side, four times Reus had to pull out before finally making his debut this month.

In hindsight, however, missing out on the big move and the one to two extra million euros he could have earned over the course of this campaign – he is reportedly paid €1.2m under his current contract, which expires in 2015 – may have worked out in his favour. On Saturday, he scored two more fine individual goals – one with his left foot, one with his right – to make it five in 11 league games and help Borussia to a 2-1 win over Hannover, three points that keep this year's surprise team in contention for the Champions League places.

Lucien Favre's side bear all the hallmarks of an intelligent collective who are performing to their maximum potential with the help of the Swiss manager's smart pressing game. But even the players admit that they would probably be nowhere near Europe if it wasn't for the inspired Reus. In the Borussia Park, he often took on the whole Hannover defence, one of the meanest in the business, all by himself – and came out on top. "The number of chances he creates for himself is unbelievable," said Gladbach captain, Filip Daems; Süddeutsche Zeitung felt he had left the Hannover centre-backs Emanuel Pogatetz and Karim Haggui like "two panicked chickens tasked to protect their coop against a wolf". The big bad Reus tore them apart at will.

"This was Gladbach v Hannover, not Reus v Hannover," he said with a touch of irritation after the match. But Reus knew that this kind of performance would fuel speculation about his future. Only a few days before, Bayern's captain, Philipp Lahm, had joined the Reus fan camp, proclaiming that "the best German players must play at Bayern" in direct reference to the Gladbach prodigy. Karl-Heinz Rummenigge went even further, calling him "an interesting player", Bavarian shorthand for: "We think we more or less have a deal with the guy. All we need is his inside leg measurement to get the Lederhosen made."

Reus uttered the customary semi-denial ("It's a fact that I have a contract until 2015. I'm very happy at Gladbach and don't think about a move right now") but the strong views of the sporting director, Max Eberl, on the matter betrayed deep worries. "Marco is young, talented and a Germany international," said the 38-year-old. "But does every young Germany player have to go to Bayern? In [Jan] Schlaudraff, [Marcell] Jansen and [Lukas] Podolski, there are enough examples [of players] who don't make it there. Bayern should concentrate on the Champions League and not on players who can't help them this year." Well, the year is nearly over. And his staggered release clause – he can move for €18m this summer, for €15m after next season, and for €12m in 2013-14 – makes an early sale rather prudent. Favre didn't sound entirely convinced himself when he said that Reus would be well advised to keep progressing under his guidance. "I can understand that Bayern would be interested in a player this good," added the 53-year-old. "When Bayern talk in such terms, you have to assume that they're buying the player."

The Bavarians in fact came closest to an agreement in the summer, and every day that Arjen Robben continues to miss strengthens Reus's case. He's no longer an inconsistent winger but a versatile creative force, able to find space and a way towards goal anywhere behind a centre-forward. "He moves like a player on PlayStation," said Favre. "He feels football; his match intelligence is incredible." A move to Munich might not be a foregone conclusion if one or two European superpowers renew their interest. Dortmund, however, are kicking themselves regardless of the tussle's outcome. Reus played for his hometown club as a 17-year-old but was shipped off to the B team of third division club Rot Weiss Ahlen. Dortmund thought he was too weak physically. "We should have taken a closer look," the champions' sporting director, Michael Zorc, conceded recently.

Favre joked Reus could still "improve when it comes to headers" on Saturday, perhaps echoing Pele's recent, rather ridiculous appraisal of Lionel Messi. Reus, to be fair, has a long way to go before he's anywhere near as "incomplete" as the Barcelona genius. But Mario Götze's "next big thing" tag certainly looks under threat.

Talking points

• Not content with snatching Serie A's fourth Champions League spot, the Bundesliga has taken a shining to 1980s-style crowd trouble, untrustworthy referees and tax evasion on an industrial scale, too. Alleged tax evasion on an industrial scale, we should say. Last week, German authorities raided the German FA headquarters in Frankfurt in connection with suspected tax evasion and wrong accounting by 21 referees. Matchday expenses were allegedly claimed twice – from the FA and the tax office – in many cases. Der Spiegel since revealed that Fifa paid German officials fees for international matches into accounts in Switzerland and Liechtenstein – a questionable practice, at best. Neither the German FA nor Fifa are commenting on the matter, naturally, citing "the ongoing investigation".

• Far more serious, however, is a recent spate of violence in and around stadiums. The midweek cup games of Dortmund v Dresden and Frankfurt v Kaiserslautern had mass punch-ups, and there was more of the same in Munich, where the police arrested 80 Nürnberg hooligans intent on breaking through a barrier. Masked Stuttgart supporters, if you can call them that, tried to attack a bus full of Dortmund fans at a service stations and even followed it in a couple of cars on the Autobahn. A few hours later, Bremen and Dortmund fans clashed at a petrol station. Six policemen were also injured at a fifth division match (KFC Uerdingen v SC Siegen); and most worryingly of all, 1. FC Magdeburg skipper Daniel Bauer was threatened by five masked men outside his house. "We'll be back unless something happens against Halle (in the next match)," the hardcore supporters told Bauer's girlfriend. The fourth division club are only 16th in the table.

In the press, there's much speculation about the root causes – if there are indeed any – of the recent disorder. Discontent about increasing ticket prices and a lack of movement on the question of allowing pyrotechnics back into the grounds are being cited as reasons but the suspicion must be that every transgression that doesn't result in bans or criminal charges simply encourages the next one. Germany's interior minister Hans-Peter Friedrich has called the escalation of violence "unacceptable" and has thus taken the strongest action possible: he's invited clubs, associations and supporter groups to a round-table discussion on November 14.

• On the pitch, there was more love, at least between Edson Braafheid and Klaas-Jan Huntelaar. The two Dutchmen shared a bromantic moment in the Veltins-Arena, including a little friendly kiss. "The Hunter", though, is too professional to let personal feelings get into the way of a goal or two and consequently scored a brace in the Royal Blues' 3-1 win. It was the 21st strike in 19 games (in all competitions) for the 28-year-old, who is doing his utmost to reconcile the reality of playing for Schalke with skills that belong in the Champions League. Huub Stevens' side are up to second in the table after a very strong performance that combined defensive rigour with pure class up front. "We have to continue playing like that," said Huntelaar. "If we do, we might put some pressure on Bayern."

• Said league leaders faced little to no pressure in the derby against Nürnberg, however. The 4-0 win was another routine "football lesson" (FCN defender Wollscheid) for the opponents, even though Bayern ran a combined eight kilometres less than the Franconians. That stat was in line with their less than average average distance: 15 teams run more in the Bundesliga. "We are the laziest side in the league," said Mario Gomez, scorer of two goals. "We let the ball do the running instead."

"Jupp Heynckes has made football into an art form," cheered president Uli Hoeness. If so, the 59-year-old's tastes seem more "Guernica" than "Flowering Garden at Sainte-Adresse": Bayern destroyed Nürnberg with effortless, playful cruelty, the way a six-year-old would blow up an ant hill with firecrackers.

Results: Freiburg 0-1 Bayer Leverkusen, Stuttgart 1-1 Dortmund, Borussia Mönchengladbach 2-1 Hannover, Wolfsburg 2-3 Hertha, Bayern 4-0 Nürnberg, Schalke 3-1 Hoffenheim, Mainz 1-1 Werder Bremen, Köln 3-0 Augsburg, Hamburg 1-1 Kaiserslautern .

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