Mr. Reliables: Plattenhardt and Kalou have made 33 & 31 appearances for Hertha this season, respectively.
Berlin – 15 weeks lie between the 34th matchday of last season and the start of the 2018/19 campaign. A long summer holiday, in which us Hertha fans have plenty of time to scrutinize all the facts and stats. So we have put together a smorgasbord of trivia from this year’s Bundesliga season.
The Olympiastadion was the fortress of the Berliners in 2016/18, but this year the Blue-Whites were particularly successful on the road, picking up 21 points away from home. Hertha banked more than 20 away points in the top flight for the first time since 2008/09, where they managed 24. This was largely thanks to the excellent shot accuracy of ‘The Old Lady’. Although Pál Dárdai’s team recorded the least shots on goal of all the Bundesliga sides, they scored a respectable 43 goals and boasted a shot-to-goal ratio of seven to one. Only the record champions from Munich bettered that feat. Also, in terms of converting good chances, the Berliners sit high and pretty with 22 of their 41 chances netted. Only FSV Mainz 05 were more efficient.
Kalou, the midfield strategist & Selke, the striver
Once again, Salomon Kalou displayed his invaluable importance for Berlin. The Ivorian was the club’s top scorer this year. With twelve goals and three assists in 31 appearances, Kalou ranks amongst the very best in the league. Because coach Dárdai predominantly played the 32-year-old behind the front line, he was officially the most deadly midfielder of the season. Kalou also scored five headers, the second most in the league behind Sandro Wagner.
Alongside Kalou, one other player stands out: Davie Selke. The 23-year-old began his Hertha career while battling with an injury, but he came up trumps in the final section of the season with some important goals. In his first year with the Blue-Whites, the U21 European champion has scored no less than ten goals. He said himself that he always strives to go above and beyond and tries to make life as difficult as possible for his opponents. The stats speak for themselves: no other Bundesliga player has won more penalties this year than Selke (4).
Plattenhardt, the dead-ball specialist
Hertha captain, Vedad Ibisevic’s team were especially deadly from set-plays, with 17 goals coming from such positions (fourth highest in the Bundesliga). The credit lies predominantly upon the foot of Marvin Plattenhardt. The German international scored three goals directly from free-kicks, but was chiefly a provider. Five of his corners were nodded into the net, a feat only matched by Augsburg’s Philipp Max and Hannover’s Pirmin Schwegler.
Hertha BSC and Borussia Mönchengladbach lead the list of accurate corner balls, with 48% reaching a teammate. As well as ‘Platte’, several of the Berlin back line contributed a formidable number of assists (15). Only FC Bayern’s defenders were more successful in this respect. The main task of a defender is obviously not to create chances, rather to prevent the team from conceding goals. The number of goalscoring chances for Hertha’s opponents was the lowest in the Bundesliga (30).
Whilst the majority of the Berlin squad are enjoying a well-deserved summer holiday, Marvin Plattenhardt will be sweating away in training for the German team and hopes to play a part in the World Cup in Russia (11.06 to 15.07.18). In his country’s colours, the 26-year-old can let his football as well as his stats do the talking.