Watch: Doekhi: "It's amazing to win the derby!"
Union win the derby
The three points are heading eastwards to Köpenick after Union deliver their fifth Berlin derby victory in a row over Hertha. The visitors go level with Bayern Munich at the summit of the Bundesliga table, firmly placing themselves in an extraordinary title race. For Hertha on the other hand, they remain in the bottom two with relegation now a serious threat for the capital club.
Four minutes added on
Into added time we go, as Hertha look to do the impossible.
Speed check: The fastest player in the game after 90 minutes
Into the final stages
There's not long to go here in Berlin. Union's 2-0 lead remains intact and it currently looks as though they are going level on points with Bayern. Can Hertha conjure up a late chance to make things interesting?
Yet another chance for Richter
Marco Richter sends a stinging volley into the palms of Frederik Rønnow, but the Danish goalkeeper is once again able to successfully defend his goal.
Union enjoying themselves now!
© Maja Hitij/Getty Images
Richter heads over
A chance to get back into the game, but following a delightful cross into the box, Marco Richter cannot keep his header down.
Rönnow with the save
In a game where the Union goalkeeper has had little to do, he comes up with a fine save at an important moment in the game. Florian Niederlechner flicks a corner directly on goal at the near post, but Rönnow's fine reaction to parry away ensures that Union's two-goal lead remains.
Seguin's derby delight
Union goalscorer Paul Seguin registered his second-ever Bundesliga goal after extending his side's advantage just moments ago. His only other Bundesliga goal also came against today's opponents Hertha whilst a Wolfsburg player (on December 3, 2016 in Wolfsburg's 3-2 defeat).
Weathering the storm
After a brief barrage of Hertha pressure, Union have made it count for nothing. The visitors have looked entirely solid at the back and now possess a two-goal lead. The hosts on the other hand are still yet to register a shot on target in this game, and now face a very long way back into the fraught encounter.
Union double their lead!
Clear daylight between the sides now! Union have doubled their lead on the break. Rani Khedira wins the ball back deep in the Union half, before the ball is played through to Sheraldo Becker. The Union striker shrugs off the defender, and heads directly towards goal, before teeing it off to Paul Seguin who tucks it away nicely into an empty net.
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Hertha regaining a foothold
Hertha are now enjoying a fine period themselves. Amidst re-establihsing a foothold in the game, a corner for the hosts flies past a number of bodies but nobody is quite able to prod at it. The Hertha home support has got audibly more vocal, perhaps sensing that this is the opportunity for their team to pounce.
Marco Richter notices Frederik Rönnow is off his line. The Hertha man tries to chip him from long range, but the execution is slightly off as the ball simply sails out for a goal kick.
Union continuing where they left off
Union are looking relatively secure at the back, whilst continuing to apply pressure when Hertha take to the ball. Can the visitors translate this period of dominance into a second goal?
Union have not lost any of their last 48 Bundesliga matches after taking the lead (34 victories, 14 draws). But perhaps there's hope for Hertha. The last time Union were defeated after going ahead was in December 2020 against today's hosts on this very ground (1-3 after 1-0).
Away we go again
We're back underway here in Berlin. It'll be interesting to see how that late Union goal will change the game. Will Hertha now come out of their shell and force an equaliser? Or will Union extend their lead and go level with Bayern Munich at the top of the Bundesliga?
Union lead at the break
It's Union who have ultimately made their chance count. Hertha have looked the slightly better side statistically-speaking, but the visitors ended the first half strongly, pinning Hertha back deep inside their own half. Having mustered just the one major opportunity and taken it, Union lead 1-0 at half time in the capital.
Goal for Union!
It's the visitors who take the lead! Danilho Doekhi scores with a bullet header to record Union's 10th goal from set-pieces this season. Doekhi has scored his all four of his Bundesliga goals this season with his head, a league high along with Niclas Füllkrug. Whilst Union are a constant threat in the air, the opposite is true of Hertha. They've conceded nine headed goals this season; also a league high.
Union building out from the back
Union are able to find their rhythm, building nicely out from the back. But whilst the initial attacking phases look promising, the attack ultimately fizzles out. That has largely been the story of this game so far.
Chance for Hertha on the break
Kevin Behrens gives the ball away for the visitors, and Hertha hit their opponents on the break. The ball finds Dodi Lukebakio on the edge of the box, before he neatly lays it off to Marco Richter. Whilst he fires the ball over the bar, that probably represents the game's first real chance.
Speed check: The fastest player in the game after 30 minutes
A closely-fought battle
Which way this game will go is anyone's guess at the minute. Both sides have started reasonably well, with neither team fazed by the occassion. But whilst the visitors have nudged ahead on the possession statistics, nobody has been able to threaten either goal.
What an atmosphere!
© Oliver Hardt/Bundesliga/Bundesliga Collection via Getty Images
The ball floats up beautifully into the Union box to Wilfried Kanga, with the striker ready to pounce acrobatically. But just as the ball is about to reach the Hertha striker, the Union defence clears. Marvin Plattenhardt fires a ball into the box immediately afterwards, but nobody is able to get on the end of it.
More Hertha pressure
Half a chance for Hertha. The hosts are once again a threat in transition, winning the ball back off the Union midfield. Suat Serdar travels well with the ball down the left flank, before slotting back to Jean-Paul Boetius, whose heavy touch kills the attack and Union are able to regather themselves.
Amidst the cacophonous atmosphere here in Berlin, both sides are struggling to truly settle. Possession has been regularly exchanged in the opening phases, with no side yet to fashion an opportunity.
Union getting into the game
Union win a free-kick deep inside the Hertha half. After the hosts' initial pressure, the visitors are able to swing one in to the box. Nothing comes from it, but Union are now starting to see more of the ball.
Early Hertha pressure
After building nicely from the back, it's Hertha that are applying the early pressure here. Relentlessly pressing the Union defensive line, Hertha win the ball back just outside the penalty box. Whilst a chance is unable to be created, Hertha have started the most comfortably.
Away we go. The Berlin derby is underway!
All set to go
The Olympiastadion is packed to the rafters, and the players are in the tunnel. It's a derby that's getting hotter and hotter by the year. Can Union do the double over Hertha and win the Berlin derby for the fifth time running? Or will Hertha pick up a much needed three points against their local rivals?
Team news - Hertha
New signing Florian Niederlechner makes the Hertha matchday squad for the first time, whilst Julian Eitschberger also returns to the squad for the first time this season. Eitschberger lacks fond memories of playing Union, after his only Berlin derby experience so far was a 1-4 defeat back in April 2022.
Team news - Hertha
Marvin Plattenhardt captains the hosts today, making his first start for the club in 2023, whilst today also represents his first appearance since it was made public that his current contract at the club will not be renewed. Peter Pekarik also comes into the starting eleven for the first time this season, whilst Filip Uremovic starts for the first time in almost four months (October 2, 2022, 1-1 against Hoffenheim). This means that Hertha make changes to 3 of the 4 positions in the backline.
Team news - Union
Jerome Roussillon is in the starting eleven for the first time this season and his first ever start for the club comes against their city rivals. Andras Schäfer also returns to the starting eleven for the first time in three months, whilst striker Sheraldo Becker makes his 100th competitive appearance for Union.
Hertha starting line-up
Christensen - Pekarik, Uremovic, Kempf, Plattenhardt (c) - Tousart, Serdar - Richter, Boetius, Lukebakio – Kanga
Ernst, Niederlechner, Mittelstädt, Ngankam, Prince-Boateng, Dardai, Sunjic, Scherhant, Eitschberger
Union starting line-up
Rönnow - Doekhi, Knoche, Leite – Trimmel (c), Schäfer, Khedira, Haberer, Roussillon - Becker, Behrens
Grill, Jaeckel, Michel, Seguin, Juranovic, Gießelmann, Haraguchi, Leweling, Jordan
Watch: All set in the Union changing room
Watch: Hertha have arrived
Watch: Bremen 1-2 Union during the week
Watch: Hertha 0-5 Wolfsburg during the week
Watch: The Berlin family divide
Why is this such a special fixture?
© DFL Deutsche Fußball Liga
Watch: Highlights of the reverse fixture
the father a dyed-in-the-wool Hertha fan and the daughter a staunch supporter of Union.
Prior to 2020/21, no Berlin team had ever finished above Hertha when competing together in the Bundesliga. Union bucked that trend in only their second top-flight campaign and have since finished in seventh and fifth, with Hertha down in 14th and then 16th. The team from Köpenick have won the last four encounters, including a DFB Cup tie at the Olympiastadion last season, to assert their claim on being number 1 in the capital.
Watch: Time-travelling in Berlin
Hertha have lost both games so far in 2023, while Union have taken maximum points. That's left the Old Lady second bottom of the standings, poles apart from second-placed Union, who sit just three points adrift of leaders Bayern.
Watch: Get ready for the Berlin derby!
Hello and thanks for joining us for build-up and live coverage of the Berlin derby, the eighth top-flight meeting between these sides.