Head coach Pál Dárdai made four changes to the side that faced FC Bayern München in the mid-week cup tie. Lukas Klünter replaced the suspended Valentino Lazaro, whilst Marvin Plattenhardt made way for Jordan Torunarigha. Fabian Lustenberger and Davie Selke returned to the starting lineup, with Per Skjelbred and Vedad Ibišević being named on the bench.
In an intense first half, the best chances to open the scoring fell to the home side. Thorgan Hazard had a chance but could only direct his finish into the arms of Rune Jarstein (2’) whilst Alassane Plea saw his effort glance just wide (6’). Six minutes later, Hertha came back with a chance of their own. Selke played Maximilian Mittelstädt through with a clever backheel, but his shot was deflected behind. From the resulting corner Salomon Kalou went close, only managing to find the side netting (13’). On the 20 minute mark, the Old Lady had their goalkeeper to thank as he kept the scores tied, denying Michael Lang who had found himself in space. After this, Hertha became more secure at the back, denying Gladbach any clear chances on goal. They finally seized an opportunity to counter attack when Marko Grujić found Kalou on the right flank, who skillfully beat three defenders before finishing into the far corner to put the visitors ahead (30’).
The second 45 minutes started in a similar fashion to the first. Hazard recorded the first shot on goal of the second half, but was denied again by Jarstein (55’). Hertha hit Gladbach on the counter once again: Selke dropped into his own half to pick up the ball and got to the byline on a fantastic run, before cutting the ball back to Ondrej Duda, who recorded his tenth goal of the season and Hertha’s second of the game with a first-time shot (56’). The Old Lady had the momentum and almost made it three: Kalou was denied by Yann Sommer (66’) before Selke couldn’t convert a chance in the box (71’). Five minutes later the ball was in the back of the Gladbach goal for the third time. On this occasion, Duda was the supplier, as his cross was headed home by Selke, who picked up his first league goal since Matchday 11 (76’). The undoubted player of the match almost clinched his second of the game, but was denied by a save from Sommer (82’). Gladbach’s best chance of the match came in the 91st minute, but Hazard wasn’t able to capitalise.
Conclusion and Outlook
Hertha sit 7th in the table with 31 points. Next Saturday (16.02.09, 18.30 CET) SV Werder Bremen will visit the Olympiastadion in the “Game of the Week”.