Sinsheim - 1899 Hoffenheim's worst fears were confirmed on Sunday evening when a scan confirmed that goalkeeper Koen Casteels had fractured his tibia.

The Belgian goalkeeper picked up the injury in a mid-air collision with Hertha Berlin forward Adrian Ramos in the two sides' 1-1 draw at the Olympiastadion and will not play again this season.

Immediate operation

"The game was overshadowed by this injury," said Hoffenheim coach Markus Gisdol. "He's already been taken to hospital." He was also operated on in a Berlin hospital on Sunday night and will miss the rest of the season as a result.

Understudy Jens Grahl is also currently out injured with a thigh strain, meaning 30-year-old Alexander Stolz is set to add to his first ever Bundesliga appearance, which he made on Sunday. "Luckily, we had a good goalkeeper on the bench," added Gisdol.