The Dutchman scored the first in style and assisted a further two for Lasogga, who grabbed quick-fire second-half hat-trick, with a stunning strike from Tolgay Arslan condemning Nürnberg to their heaviest home league defeat since losing 6-0 to VfB Stuttgart way back in 1983.
Van der Vaart special
Hamburg have been on an upward trend since the arrival of Bert van Marwijk as head coach just over a week ago. The 61-year-old led the Red Shorts to a battling point at Frankfurt last weekend and the confidence they gained from that result was on show in a strong opening from the visitors, Lasogga firing low at Raphael Schäfer early on as HSV looked to express themselves.
Nürnberg’s Michael Wiesinger had shown his own attacking intent by naming two strikers in a 4-1-3-2 formation and Tomas Pekhart missed a glorious chance to open the scoring when his close-range header went the wrong side of the post. It would have come against the run of play, however, as HSV were in control of proceedings, and they soon took a deserved lead. Heiko Westermann made an overlapping run from right back and his deep cross was volleyed home in style by the arriving van der Vaart.
Gulf in class
Hamburg looked comfortable with their 1-0 lead and they kept Schäfer busy with pot-shots at goal, with Hakan Calhanoglu firing in a free-kick and Marcell Jansen seeing a long-range drive held. At the other end, Pekhart was struggling to make his mark on HSV’s defensive pairing of Jonathan Tah and Johan Djourou, with the hosts clearly feeling the absence of injured striker Daniel Ginczek.
The second period began in much the same way, with Hamburg quicker and more purposeful than their hosts in all areas. Lasogga tested Schäfer with another low strike, before Jansen and Westermann went close with headers. Hamburg simply looked to have more quality in the final third of the pitch and it showed either side of the hour-mark as they wrested control of the game. First, Lasogga collected van der Vaart’s incisive pass to drill into the corner, before then tapping home another inviting corner from the Dutch international.
Just four minutes later, Lasogga had netted his hat-trick - needing only seven minutes to do so - and HSV led 4-0. Capitalising on a horrendous error from Per Nilsson, the Germany U-21 international beat Schäfer with an early strike from distance that found the net via the inside of the post.
It was to get worse still for the hosts though, as the usually reliable Schäfer succumbed to an error that was brutally punished. He charged out of goal to intercept a pass, but his clearance fell straight to Arslan, who sent a controlled shot over the keeper’s head and into the unguarded net. Substitutes Artjoms Rudnevs and Maximilian Beister might have further added to the score, but Nürnberg were spared further humiliation, with the referee’s whistle putting them out of their misery shortly afterwards.
Line-ups and statistics
You can check out more Rafael van der Vaart magic on the Bundesliga's official YouTube channel: