Bremen/Berlin- As soon as it started Hertha seemed to stop. There were nervous moments – a disallowed Bremen goal, a last-minute block and a number of close calls – but Hertha came away from the Weserstadion with a draw. The goalless point on Saturday evening definitely saw lady luck smiling down on Hertha. “In the end we were very lucky,” admitted Pal Dardai. “But we will happily take the point we have managed to get out of this game,” added the Hertha boss.
In the first minute it was the post that saved Hertha, in the last it was Jordan Torunarigha, who anticipated Maxi Eggestein’s last-gasp drive to perfection to deny the Werder forward with the very last action of the game. “I just tried to guess in the moment and ran to the line, and thankfully it was the right decision!”, explained the centre back after the game.
The 20-year-old put in a brilliant performance at the back and made a substantial impression. “Jordan was the best man of the pitch for us following the substitution, he was superb” said Pal Dardai. All of this after he had originally started from the bench and had replaced Fabian Lustenberger in the 22nd minute.
“Lustis” withdrawal had only come after an elbow from Werder’s Thomas Delaney, which led to the ruling out of the Green-Whites apparent opener in the early stages. While the referee originally awarded the goal, VAR came to Hertha’s rescue after spotting the foul. The diagnosis for Lustenberger was light concussion. „He’ll be monitored for a bit and will sit out of training for the next few days,“ explained Pal Dardai.
The boss was far from pleased with his side’s first half performance. The game developed exactly as had been predicted, and Hertha stood firm at the back, while creating next to nothing going forward.“We weren’t there in the first half and we were a step off and we were very happy to not see Bremen take the lead,” said a critical Dardai. “Our forwards were too busy with defending,” said Valentino Lazaro, who did his best in the second period to create something in front of the Werder goal.”
No 'sucker punch'
The Blue and Whites re-emerged from the break with a little more purpose in their play. “We were better going forward after the break, but the Bremen back line stood firm and we weren’t able to combine,” said Davie Selke. Vedad Ibisevic had the best chance of opening the scoring, but the Bosnian was unable to turn home at the back post after some silky skills from Valentino Lazaro had unlocked the Bremen back line.
The fact that nil remained on both sides of the scoreline was largely thanks to Thomas Kraft, who pulled off several sensational saves to keep Werder out. „Looking at the stats, taking a point from the game was no bad thing at all,“ said Dardai.
“We were not the same team as against Stuttgart and Dortmund, so we can be very satisfied with point,” added Lazaro. Dardai said: “We have to thank our luck stars that we have not lost. It gets no easier for Hertha next week, as Julian Nagelsmann and Hoffenheim come to the Olympiastadion next Saturday for a 15:30 kick off. The first training session for that game will take place on Sunday.