Personnel & tactics:
Head coach Sebastian Hoeness made four changes to the starting XI that beat Holstein Kiel 5-1 in the DFB-Pokal. Florian Grillitsch was drafted in and played alongside Stefan Posch and Kevin Vogt in a back three protecting goalkeeper Oliver Baumann. Robert Skov started at wing-back in place of David Raum, who is suffering from ankle problems, while Kevin Akpoguma began on the right. Dennis Geiger returned to the starting line-up and was deployed centrally alongside Sebastian Rudy and Angelo Stiller, with Andrej Kramarić and Ihlas Bebou in attack.
TSG made a double substitution in the 66th minute, with Georginio Rutter and Diadie Samassékou replacing Bebou and Rudy. Christoph Baumgartner came on for Stiller around 10 minutes later (77). In the closing stages, Geiger and Kramarić made way for Chris Richards and Jacob Bruun Larsen (84).
Moment of the match:
The opener: until Andrej Kramarić found the net, it was a disjointed game in which Hertha BSC narrowly had the upper hand. But then TSG seized control and doubled their advantage to 2-0 before the break.
Number of the game: 11
Andrej Kramarić kept his unbeaten streak against Hertha BSC going in his 11th appearance against the capital club. The Croat has never lost to the men from Berlin, winning eight times and drawing three.
TSG Hoffenheim: Baumann – Posch, Grillitsch, Vogt – Akpoguma, Geiger (Richards, 84), Skov – Rudy (Samassékou, 66), Stiller (Baumgartner, 77) – Bebou (Rutter, 66), Kramarić
Hertha BSC: Schwolow – Zeefuik (Jovetic, 46), Boyata, Stak, Pekarik – Ascasibar, Serdar – Richter (Ekkelenkamp, 69), Darida (Maolida, 46; Tousart, 77), Mittelstädt – Piatek (Belfodil, 61)
Goals: 1-0 Kramarić (19), 2-0 Rudy (36)
Red card: Boyata (76)
First chance of the match: TSG switch the play nicely after winning possession. Rudy squares the ball to Stiller, who goes for goal left-footed from the edge of the box but fires just over.
Huge chance for Hertha to take the lead: Mittelstädt goes through down the left and fizzes a low cross into the danger zone. Richter has the chance to make it 1-0, but Baumann adjusts his positioning well to make a great save.
TSG are ahead: Kramarić plays it out to Skov on the left and although his first attempt is blocked, the Dane follows up and passes into the centre. Bebou skilfully lets it run through to Kramarić, who is in space and slots home.
TSG are dominating: Rudy crosses from the right towards Skov, who bursts through down the left and heads goalbound only for Schwolow to make a fingertip save.
What a goal: Bebou switches the play to Skov on the left. He unleashes his trademark thunderbolt and shoots at goal. The strike hits the post, but Rudy is standing in the right place and taps the loose ball into the net.
Bebou uses his physicality (fairly) to get the better of Boyata. He and Kramarić are through against one defender, but his attempted shot is ultimately blocked and a good opportunity goes begging.