TSG go down to Hertha BSC

TSG Hoffenheim restarted their Bundesliga campaign following the two-month break enforced by the corona pandemic with a 3-0 (0-0) defeat at the hands of Hertha BSC. The match was even for long spells, but the capital club struck twice in close succession on the hour-mark to seal victory in a game that was played behind closed doors.

Personnel & tactics:

Stefan Posch returned to the defence in place of Håvard Nordtveit but played out of position at left-back. He was joined in the back four protecting shot-stopper Oliver Baumann's goal by Kevin Akpoguma, Benjamin Hübner and Pavel Kadeřábek. Another change from the last outing was Steven Zuber, who played alongside Florian Grillitsch and Sebastian Rudy in central midfield.

Coach Alfred Schreuder was without four forwards for the Bundesliga restart, with the attacking quartet of Andrej Kramarić, Sargis Adamyan, Munas Dabbur and Ishak Belfodil all unavailable. Robert Skov was therefore fielded on the right of a front three, with Christoph Baumgartner on the left and Ihlas Bebou in the centre.

Zuber frequently appeared on the left flank during the first period, with Baumgartner shifting into the middle.

The first change was made at the interval, with 17-year-old Maximilian Beier replacing Bebou ahead of the second half (46). Schreuder reacted to falling behind by making a double-change in the 66th minute, introducing Jacob Bruun Larsen and Dennis Geiger in place of Zuber and the injured Rudy. Ilay Elmkies was handed his Bundesliga debut in stoppage time, the youngster coming on for Baumgartner. It was the first time TSG have made four substitutions in a Bundesliga game, with the rules temporarily changed to allow for up to five changes.

Number of the game: 70

There were 70 days between TSG Hoffenheim's 25th and 26th matches of the season, with the Bundesliga on a break for over two months due to the coronavirus. 

Moment of the match:

The 54th minute: substitute Maximilian Beier was clean through on Jarstein's goal but fired his shot wide of the mark. Hertha BSC scored twice in close succession shortly afterwards to wrap up the points.


TSG Hoffenheim: Baumann – Kadeřábek, Akpoguma, Hübner, Posch – Rudy (Geiger, 66), Grillitsch, Zuber (Bruun Larsen, 66) – Baumgartner (Elmkies, 90), Bebou (Beier, 46), Skov

Hertha BSC: Jarstein – Pekarik, Boyata, Torunarigha, Plattenhardt – Skjelbred (Ascasibar, 87), Grujic – Lukebakio (Ngankam, 79), Cunha (Maier, 79), Mittelstädt – Ibisevic (Piatek, 79)

Goals: 0-1 Akpoguma (58, own goal), 0-2 Ibisevic (60), 0-3 Cunha (74)

Match highlights

24. Min.

Baumgartner breaks through down the left and plays the ball into the box towards Bebou, who shoots on the turn. But Torunarigha puts his body on the line and blocks the strike to deny Hoffenheim an opener.

28. Min.

Kaderabek plays a brilliant cross towards the unmarked Baumgartner at the back post. But the Austrian doesn't generate proper contact on his shot and spurns the chance to break the deadlock. That should have been a goal.

41. Min.

What a stop by Baumann! Ibisevic gets the better of Hübner and is clean through in the penalty area. The former TSG forward squares the ball towards Cunha, but Baumann stays on his feet and makes an excellent save.

54. Min.

Almost 1-0 there. Rudy plays a brilliant ball into the path of Beier, who is clean through on Jarstein but fires his shot wide. What a chance!

55. Min.

The visitors pose a threat at the other end almost immediately when Ibisevic gets the better of Hübner, but his shot is kept out thanks to a fingertip save from shot-stopper Baumann.

58. Min.

Hoffenheim can't clear the ball properly and Pekarik has a go from distance. The ball deflects off Akpoguma and Baumann has no chance of keeping it out.

60. Min.

Mittelstädt delivers a pinpoint cross from the left flank towards Ibisevic, who heads home from close range to make it 2-0.

71. Min.

An unmarked Grillitsch latches onto an excellent cross seven metres out, but he blazes the ball over the frame of the goal.

74. Min.

Cunha beats Akpoguma all too easily on the left flank and cuts into the penalty area before firing into the top-right corner. That's 3-0. Game over.

76. Min.

TSG also create a gilt-edged opportunity: Baumgartner is clean-through on Jarstein following a free-kick, but fires straight at the keeper from close range.

90 + 3. Min.

Maier strikes the woodwork. Almost 4-0.

Match facts and statistics »

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