Benito Raman scored his second brace of the season against Hertha Berlin as Fortuna Düsseldorf ran out 2-1 winners at the Olympiastadion on Saturday, leapfrogging the Old Lady to move up to 10th in the table.
Goals: 0-1 Raman (35'), 1-1 Grujic (41'), 1-2 Raman (61')
A ripple of panic went around the Olympiastadion on just three minutes as Dodi Lukebakio got in behind the Hertha defence, but the big Belgian was unable to clip his long-range effort over Rune Jarstein on his return from suspension. The hosts dominated the early stages in terms of possession, but failed to really trouble visiting keeper Michael Rensing, with Düsseldorf growing into the game midway through the half. Lukebakio fired an ambitious volley wide from Kevin Stöger's pin-point long ball, before being denied by Jarstein at the back post. Raman deservedly broke the deadlock for Fortuna on 35 minutes, latching onto Rouwen Hennings' through-ball and scooping a delightful finish high into the net for 1-0. Hertha were soon back on level terms, though, with Ondrej Duda beating the offside trap and pulling across the six-yard box for Marko Grujic to equalise shortly before half time.
Hertha came out all guns blazing at the start of the second half, with Davie Selke almost picking out Mathew Leckie in the middle after a lung-bursting run into the box. Rensing then made a terrific one-handed save to claw out Duda's close-range effort, and the hosts were left regretting their missed opportunities as Raman restored Düsseldorf's lead just after the hour. Captain Oliver Fink sent in a low ball from the left and, after a clever dummy from Hennings, Raman fired past Jarstein at the second time of asking. Both coaches rang the changes as Hertha went in search of an equaliser, with Valentino Lazaro rifling a free-kick straight at Rensing before whipping in a superb cross for Salomon Kalou, who somehow failed to get his header on target. The visitors couldn't quite manage a third goal through substitute Takashi Usami, but nevertheless held on for a victory which moves them two points above Hertha in the table.
- Four of Raman's nine Bundesliga goals this season have now come against Hertha. The Belgium U21 winger also grabbed a brace in November's reverse fixture (4-1), despite only coming off the bench in the 83rd minute.
- Liverpool loanee Grujic got his fourth of the campaign – all four have come at the Olympiastadion.
- Düsseldorf are up to nine goals against Hertha this season, having already won 4-1 in the Bundesliga and 3-1 in January's Telekom Cup.
- Hertha have now lost their last four Bundesliga games, a first since April-May 2016.
- Over the past 11 Bundesliga matchdays, Düsseldorf have picked up 20 points more than Hertha.
- Düsseldorf boss Friedhelm Funkel coached Hertha from October 2009 until the end of the season, when they were relegated. Pal Dardai was one of his players, making the last 11 of his 286 Bundesliga appearances under his opposite number on Saturday.
Hertha: Jarstein – Lazaro, Stark, Rekik, Mittelstädt – Grujic, Skjelbred – Leckie (Dardai 78'), Duda (Dilrosun 70'), Kalou (c) – Selke
Unused subs: Kraft, Pekarik, Klünter, Plattenhardt, Baak
Out: Darida (thigh), Ibisevic (suspended), Luckassen (ankle), Lustenberger (thigh), Maier (knee), Torunarigha (ankle)
Coach: Pal Dardai
Düsseldorf: Rensing – Zimmermann, Hoffmann, Kaminski, Gießelmann (Bormuth 78') – Lukebakio (Usami 68'), Fink (c) (Sobottka 73'), Bodzek, Stöger, Raman – Hennings
Unused subs: Theißen, Barkok, Ducksch, Karaman
Out: Ayhan (thigh), Contento (cruciate ligament), Drobny (hand), Morales (groin), Zimmer (ankle)
Coach: Friedhelm Funkel