Eugen Polanski put Markus Gisdol's men in front from the penalty spot after Jaroslav Drobny was given his marching orders, and it was the former Mainz midfielder who struck again to make it two before Sebastian Rudy completed the scoring.
Red card, penalty and Hamburg's hopes ended
Hamburg were left with a mountain to climb after only 20 minutes when Drobny pulled Sven Schipplock down inside the area, giving away a penalty and also earning himself a red card. Rene Adler came on with Mohamed Gouaida sacrificed, but although he got his hand to Polanski's effort, he could not keep it out. With a man less, Hamburg could not craft any chances as Hoffenheim controlled proceedings, albeit without creating any clear-cut openings.
Hamburg showed a few glimpses of life early in the second half, but the hosts dampened their spirits late on with two goals in six minutes sealing their win. Polanski added the second with a shot through the legs of Dennis Diekmeier into the right-hand corner before Volland unselfishly set up Rudy to net with the outside of his boot to take Hoffenheim to within two points of the top six.
Line-ups and statistics